A description of the proposed changes are as follows:

1. TITLE 8:

CONSTRUCTION SAFETY ORDERS
Chapter 4, Subchapter 4, Article 24, Section 1670 and Section 1671.2

Fall Protection in the Construction Industry

INITIAL STATEMENT OF REASONS


INFORMATIVE DIGEST OF PROPOSED ACTION/PLAIN ENGLISH OVERVIEW

This proposed rulemaking action contains numerous nonsubstantive, editorial, reformatting of subsections, and grammatical revisions. These nonsubstantive revisions are not all discussed in this Informative Digest. However, these proposed revisions are clearly indicated in the regulatory text in underline and strikeout format. In addition to these nonsubstantive revisions, the following actions are proposed:

Section 1670. Personal Fall Arrest Systems, Personal Fall Restraint Systems and Positioning Devices.

Existing Section 1670 contains requirements pertaining to personal fall arrest systems, personal fall restraint systems and positioning devices, including but not limited to: trigger heights, use of lifelines on scaffolds, fall arrest system component criteria, use of self-retracting lifelines and lanyards, minimum lanyard breaking strength, free fall distances for personal fall arrest systems, attachment points, prohibited uses of body belts, anchorage, etc.

Subsection (a) requires employees to wear approved personal fall arrest, fall restraint or positioning systems when the work exposes the employee to a fall in excess of 7 feet from the perimeter of structures, unprotected sides and edges, leading edges, shaftways, and sloped roof surfaces steeper than 7:12 or other sloped surfaces steeper than 40 degrees not otherwise protected by other applicable safety orders within the CSO. A revision is proposed to add a requirement which addresses use of personal fall protection as outlined above for employees whose work exposes them to a potential fall in excess of 15 feet from roof surfaces 7:12 or less and other sloped surfaces 40 degrees or less. A revision is also proposed to add a new item (3) in the note at the end of the subsection, to explain that fall protection requirements pertaining to employees in roofing operations can be found in Section 1730 of the Construction Safety Orders. The proposed revisions will clarify to the employer that employees must wear appropriate fall protection not only when the roof or working surface is sloped in excess of the parameters stated above, but also when the roof/working surface is sloped less than 7:12 or 40 degrees and the fall distance exceeds 15 feet. The proposed revisions will make this requirement consistent with other regulations in the CSO pertaining to structural wood framing systems, and clarify that there are other regulations pertaining strictly to roofing operations in Section 1730 of the Construction Safety Orders.

Subsection (b) contains language establishing the scope of the subsection as containing various requirements for personal fall arrest systems, including but not limited to the following: use on suspended scaffolds, use of horizontal lifelines, minimum breaking strength of lanyards, protection of lifelines, use of self-retracting lifelines, anchorages, body belts, etc. A revision is proposed to delete the reference to fall arrest systems in subsection (b) and replace it with the term fall protection systems, and to insert the word "applicable" between "the" and "provisions" in the first sentence. The proposed revision will clarify to the employer that while the use of body belts with fall arrest systems is clearly prohibited, certain subsection (b) requirements apply to systems other than personal fall arrest systems and include positioning device and fall restraint systems where body belts may be used.

Subsection (b)(11) contains various requirements pertaining to the use and operation of personal fall arrest systems. Revisions are proposed to delete subsection (b)(11)(A), and re-letter the remaining paragraphs consistent with the Title 8 format. A revision is also proposed to transfer the maximum 900 pound arresting force requirement, which pertains only to body belts, to the most appropriate Section in 1670, which is subsection (b)(13). In addition, language specifying the attachment point of the anchor ends of lanyards in relation to the employee’s waist is proposed to be added to proposed subsection (b)(11)(B). The primary effect of the proposed revisions will be to clearly indicate to the employer that body belts are no longer acceptable as part of a personal fall arrest system, consistent with existing subsection (b). The proposed revision will also clarify how a lanyard end is to be anchored in relation to the employee’s body.

A revision is proposed to delete the parenthetical reference to personal fall arrest and positioning device systems in subsection (b)(13), and to add language pertaining to the 900 pound maximum arresting force transferred from subsection (b)(11)(A). The proposed revision will simplify the language of this subsection, which is intended to stress body belts, harnesses, and components are not to be used for hoisting and hauling.

Further revisions are proposed to delete duplicative subsection (b)(14) which pertains to impact loading tests and the removal from service of equipment which does not pass the test, and to re-letter remaining subsections consistent with Title 8 format. The proposed revisions will improve clarity via consolidation and eliminate duplication within Section 1670(b) with regard to in-service load testing, anchor ends of lanyards, and fall arrest system free fall distance, eliminate a technical inaccuracy with regard to the use of fall arrest system components, clarify which types of components are subject to in-service loading, which loading tests apply and where the test criteria are to be found.

Subsection (b)(18) pertains to requirements prohibiting the attachment of personal fall arrest systems to guardrails or hoists except as specified within these Orders unless the guardrail is capable of safely supporting the load. A revision is proposed to renumber the subsection to (b)(17), and to restructure the sentence to improve clarity within the subsection.

Subsection (c) contains requirements for positioning device systems and addresses methods of rigging, inspection and use of components. A revision is proposed to delete subsection (c)(3) as it is duplicated in proposed subsection (b)(13). The proposed revision will improve clarity within Section 1670.

Proposed revisions consist of deleting subsection (e), which is partially duplicated in proposed subsection 1670(b)(11)(B). That portion pertaining to the requirement that the anchor end of the lanyard be secured at a level not lower than the employee’s waist, which is not duplicated, is proposed for relocation to subsection 1670(b)(11)(B). Additional proposed revisions include deletion of language in existing subsection (f) pertaining to the use of energy absorbing devices, addition of language pertaining to harnesses, droplines, lifelines or other components, and adding references to the ANSI A10.14-1975, ANSI A10.14-1991 and ANSI Z359.1-1992 standards in the "Note" to existing subsection (i).

The proposed revisions will improve clarity via consolidation and eliminate duplication within Section 1670 with regard to in-service load testing, anchor ends of lanyards, and fall arrest system free fall distance, eliminate a technical inaccuracy with regard to the use of fall arrest system components, clarify which types of components are subject to in-service loading, which loading tests apply and where the test criteria are to be found.

Section 1671.2 (b). Safety Monitoring Systems.

Existing subsection (b)(1) contains requirements for safety monitors and requires the employer to designate a competent person to fulfill those duties which include: being competent to recognize hazards, warning unaware employees about fall hazards, communication, visual observation, etc. A revision is proposed in paragraph (C) to allow the safety monitor to be within visual sighting "where practicable", as opposed to existing language which requires it always, and to clarify that the monitor shall always be in communication with the employee being monitored. The proposed revisions will consolidate duplicative language in paragraphs (C) and (D) into one paragraph (C), require the safety monitor to be within visual sighting when it is possible to do so, and will continue to require the monitor to always be in communication with the employee being monitored.

DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE

1.  American National Standard (ANSI) A10.14-1975, American National Standard- Requirements for Safety Belts, Harnesses, Lanyards, Lifelines, and Drop Lines for Construction and Demolition Use.
2.  ANSI A10.14-1991, American National Standard-Requirements for Construction and Demolition Operations-Requirements for Safety Belts, Harnesses, Lanyards and Lifelines for Construction and Demolition Use.
3.  ANSI Z359.1-1992, American National Standard-Safety Requirements for Personal Fall Arrest Systems, Subsystems and Components.

These documents are too cumbersome or impractical to publish in Title 8. Therefore, it is proposed to incorporate the documents by reference. Copies of these documents are available for review during normal business hours at the Standards Board Office located at 2520 Venture Oaks Way, Suite 350, Sacramento, California