EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH
APPEALS BOARD

Summary of J.F. SHEA, INC. - DAR


The Division cited Employer under section 1670(a) [fall protection at perimeter] because a foreman seated on the edge of a "needle beam", a 10' high steel grating work platform on a railed machine that moves concrete forms in tunnels, was not tied-off or otherwise protected against falling. Employer argued that the needle beam was more in the nature of a "beam" than the perimeter of a structure, that section 1669(a) covers protection against falling from beams, and that protection is not required thereunder unless the fall distance exceeds 15'. The Board held that a "needle beam" is not like a regular beam, i.e., a narrow, linear structural steel member. It is a platform on top of two horizontal beams designed to carry employees and tools. Hence, an employee at the edge of a needle beam is exposed to a hazard that is more like that of falling in one direction from the perimeter of a building surface than that of the hazard of falling off either side of a beam being traveled. A violation of section 1670(a) was sustained.

J.F. SHEA, INC. 95-R5D2-2070
June 7, 2000