A description of the proposed changes are as follows:

1. TITLE 8:

General Industry Safety Orders
Chapter 4, Subchapter 7, Articles 5 and 6, Sections 3281, 3284, 3285, 3286, 3287, 3291, 3293 and Appendix C to Article 6
Personal Fall Protection for Window Cleaning Operations and Building Maintenance using Powered Platforms and Equipment

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:

Article 5. Window Cleaning

Section 3281. Definitions.

This section contains definitions of terms used in the window cleaning and building maintenance industries. It is proposed to amend Section 3281 to add a definition for the term "Competent Person" verbatim of the existing Construction Safety Order definition contained in Section 1504. The proposed new definition will clarify to the employer the meaning and intent of the regulations contained in Appendix C to Article 6. Further revisions are proposed to delete the reference to body belts in the definition of Personal Fall Arrest System, and add a definition for the term "Terminal Strap (Runner)". The proposed revision to the definition of personal fall arrest system will have no effect other than to clarify to the employer that body belts are not to be used as part of a personal fall arrest system. The term "Terminal Strap (Runner)" is used to describe the piece of a window cleaner’s belt that connects the "waist band" to the "terminal". The term "Runner" was included as this term is used in ANSI/ASME A39.1-1995, Safety Requirements for Window Cleaning and by persons in the industry.

Section 3284. Window Cleaner’s Belts, Safety Belts, Harnesses and Other Attachments.

Section 3284 provides the requirements for the use of Window Cleaner’s Belts, Safety Belts, Harnesses and Other Attachments used for window cleaning operations.

It is proposed to amend the title of this section by replacing the outdated fall protection terms, "Safety Belts" and "Harnesses", with the current terminology, "Personal Fall Arrest Systems", "Personal Fall Restraint Systems" and "Positioning Devices". The effect on the regulated public will be to make employers aware of the new terminology for personal fall arrest and restraint systems and positioning devices used for window cleaning and building maintenance operations.

Subsection 3284(a)(1), General Requirements, requires that safety belts be kept in good repair, visually inspected prior to each use and inspected by the employer at least twice a year. A revision is proposed to change the reference from "safety belts" to "window cleaner’s belts". The proposed revision will have no effect on the regulated public, since it merely replaces outdated terminology with that currently used within the industry.

Subsection 3284(a)(2), Belt Design, requires that window cleaner’s belts be labeled as meeting the design and testing requirements of ANSI/ASME A39.1-1991. It also requires that the label include the name or designation of the manufacturer, model designation, date manufactured, serial number, and test specifications. Revisions are proposed to delete the specific labeling requirements, update the referenced ANSI standard, and require the belts be designed, built and labeled to conform to ANSI/ASME A39.1-1995. Since ANSI A39.1 already requires the belts to be labeled, the effect on the regulated public is to eliminate the need for additional and redundant labeling.

Proposed new subsection 3284(c), will require fall protection equipment used in window cleaning operations to comply with Section 1670 of the Construction Safety Orders. The effect on the regulated public will be to make fall protection requirements for window cleaning consistent with fall protection for other industries and to clarify to employers the requirements for fall protection equipment.

Section 3285. Suspended Scaffolds.

Subsection 3285(c) requires each window cleaner on a working platform to attach their lanyard to a lifeline that is secured to a fixed anchorage on the roof. Proposed revisions will require each window cleaner on a working platform to be protected by a personal fall arrest system that meets the requirements of Article 6, Appendix C, Section I, of the General Industry Safety Orders. The effect on the regulated public will be to clarify to employers that fall protection requirements for window cleaners working on suspended scaffolds are the same as fall protection requirements for employees doing building maintenance from a suspended scaffold.

Section 3286. Manual Boatswain’s Chairs and Controlled Descent Apparatus (CDA).

Subsection (a)(4) requires that employees using boatswain’s chairs or CDAs wear full body harnesses as part of their personal fall arrest system. Proposed revisions will require these employees to be provided, and instructed in the use of, a personal fall arrest system which meets the requirements of Article 6, Appendix C, Section I of the General Industry Safety Orders. The effect on the regulated public will be to clarify to employers the fall protection requirements for window cleaners using boatswain’s chairs or CDAs and to make these requirements consistent with the fall protection requirements for employees using boatswain’s chairs or CDAs in other industries.

Section 3287. Ladders.

Subsection (a)(12) requires that no employee be allowed to stand on the top three rungs of any ladder unless there are structural members that provide a firm handhold or the worker is protected from falling by an approved safety belt or other equivalent means. Proposed revisions will replace the outdated term "safety belt" with the term "personal fall protection system", and add a new subsection (a)(12)(B) restricting employees working on a stepladder from standing on the topcap or the step below the topcap. The effect on the regulated public will be to clarify to employers the fall protection requirements for window cleaners working from ladders and to make these requirements consistent with the fall protection requirements found in the Construction Safety Orders.

Section 3291. Special Design Considerations—Permanent Roof Top Installations.

Subsection (c)(2) requires that personnel standing on unguarded roofs or ledges to reposition davits be protected by an approved safety belt. Proposed revisions to this section will require these employees to be protected by a personal fall restraint system meeting the requirements of Section 1670 of the Construction Safety Orders. The effect on the regulated public will be to require the employers to provide a personal fall restraint system as described in Article 24 of the Construction Safety Orders.

Article 6. Powered Platforms and Equipment for Building Maintenance

Section 3293. Definitions.

This section states that the definitions for terms in Article 6 can be found in Article 5. The proposed amendment adds language stating that additional definitions may also be found in Article 1, Section 3207. The effect on the regulated public will be to clarify to the employer where definitions for the terms "Personal Fall Arrest System", "Personal Fall Restraint System", "Personal Fall Protection System" and "Positioning Device System" are located.

Article 6, Appendix C, Section I. Personal Fall Arrest Systems.

Section I of Appendix C sets out the criteria for personal fall arrest systems used by all employees using powered platforms.

Subsection (b). Definitions.

Subsection (b) states that the definitions for terms in Article 6 can be found in Article 5. The proposed amendment adds language stating that definitions may also be found in Article 1, Section 3207. The effect on the regulated public will be to clarify to employers where the terms "Personal Fall Arrest System", "Personal Fall Restraint System", "Personal Fall Protection System" and "Positioning Device System" are located.

Subsection (c). Design for System Components.

Subsection (c) contains design requirements for personal fall arrest components.

Subsection (c)(10) requires that the anchorage for personal fall arrest systems be capable of supporting at least 5400 pounds per employee attached. A revision is proposed to reduce the anchorage requirement to 5000 pounds. The effect of the proposed action on the regulated public will be to permit lower strength requirements for the fall protection anchorage for employees using powered platforms for building maintenance to be the same as those in other industries and consistent with the Federal OSHA standard.

Subsection (c)(11) requires that ropes and straps used in lanyards, safety lines, and the strength components of body belts and body harnesses be made from synthetic fibers or wire rope. A revision is proposed to remove the term "body belt" from this requirement. The effect of the proposed action on the regulated public will prohibit body belts from being used as part of a personal fall arrest system.

Proposed new subsection (c)(12) will require all body harnesses and lanyards manufactured on or before January 1, 1998 to be designed and built to conform to ANSI A10.14-1975, Requirements for Safety Belts, Harnesses, Lanyards, Lifelines and Drop Lines for Construction and Industrial Use, which is incorporated by reference. There will be no effect on the regulated public as body harnesses and lanyards are constructed to meet these standards.

Proposed new subsection (c)(13) will require all personal fall arrest systems manufactured after January 1, 1998 be designed and built to conform to either ANSI A10.14-1991, American National Standard for Construction and Demolition Use, or ANSI Z359.1-1992, American National Standard Safety Requirements for Personal Fall Arrest Systems, Subsystems and Components, which are incorporated by reference. There will be no effect on the regulated public as all personal fall arrest systems manufactured after this date are already built to these standards.

Subsection (d). System Performance Criteria.

Subsection (d) provides performance criteria for personal fall arrest systems.

Subsection (1)(A) requires that when stopping a fall, personal fall arrest systems limit the maximum arresting force on an employee to 900 pounds when used with a body belt. A revision is proposed to delete this subsection and renumber subsections (d)(1)(B) through (d)(1)(D) accordingly. The effect on the regulated public will be to clarify to employers that body belts shall not be used as part of a personal fall arrest system.

Subsection (e). Care and Use.

Subsection (e) contains mandatory care and use requirements for personal fall arrest systems used by employees performing building maintenance from powered platforms.

The proposed amendment will insert a new subsection (e)(1) prohibiting the use of body belts as part of a Personal Fall Arrest System, and to renumber subsections (e)(1) through (e)(8) accordingly. The effect on the regulated public will be to clarify to employers that body belts shall not be used for fall arrest.

Subsection (f). Inspections.

Subsection (f) contains the criteria for inspections of fall arrest systems.

Proposed new subsection (f)(2) will require that all personal fall arrest systems be inspected at least twice annually by a competent person in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations, and the date of the inspection be documented. The effect on the regulated public will be that employers using personal fall arrest systems for window cleaning and building maintenance will have to perform the same inspections as employers using personal fall arrest systems in the construction industry.

Article 6, Appendix C, Section II. Test Methods for Personal Fall Arrest Systems.

Section II sets out test procedures that are used to determine compliance with applicable requirements contained in Section I of this Appendix.

Subsection (b). General conditions for all tests in Section II.

Subsection (b) describes the general conditions to be used for all of the tests described in this section.

Subsection (b)(1) states that during the required tests, safety lines, lanyards, and deceleration devices shall be attached to an anchorage and connected to the body belt or body harness in the same manner as they would be when used to protect employees. A revision is proposed to delete the term "body belt". The effect on the regulated public is to clarify to employers that body belts shall not be used for fall arrest.

Subsection (c). Strength Test.

Subsection (c) describes the tests to be used to determine that a fall arrest system meets the strength requirements outlined in Section I of this Appendix.

Subsection (c)(3) requires that during the strength test for lanyard systems, the lanyards be six feet in length measured from the fixed anchorage to the attachment on the body belt or body harness. A revision is proposed to delete the term "body belt". The effect on the regulated public will be to prohibit body belts from being used for fall arrest.

Subsection (d). Force Test.

Subsection (d) describes the tests to be used to measure the maximum arresting force on an employee using a fall arrest system as required by Section I of this Appendix.

Subsection (d)(2)(B) requires that during the force test, lanyards be six feet in length measured from the fixed anchorage to the attachment on the body belt or body harness. A revision is proposed to delete the term "body belt". The effect on the regulated public will be to clarify to employers that body belts shall not be used for fall arrest.

Subsection (d)(3)(B)(1) requires that the free fall distance, used in the force test for deceleration systems that have a connection link or lanyard, be equal to the distance between the centerline of the safety line and the attachment point to the body belt or harness. A revision is proposed to delete the term "body belt". The effect on the regulated public will be to clarify to employers that body belts shall not be used for fall arrest.

Subsection (d)(3)(B)(4) states that a system fails the force test if the recorded maximum arresting force exceeds 1,260 pounds when using a body belt, and/or exceeds 2,520 pounds when using a body harness. A revision is proposed to delete the force requirement for a body belt. The effect on the regulated public will be to clarify to employers that body belts shall not be used for fall arrest.

Article 6, Appendix C, Section III. Non-Mandatory Guidelines for Personal Fall Arrest Systems.

Section III provides non-mandatory guidelines which are intended to assist employers in complying with the provisions of Sections I and II of this Appendix.

Subsection (c). Component Compatibility Considerations.

This subsection provides non-mandatory guidelines on the compatibility of fall arrest devices, including body belts. A revision is proposed to delete the term "body belt". The effect on the regulated public will be to clarify to employers that body belts shall not be used for fall arrest.

Subsection (e). Instruction Considerations.

Subsection (e) provides non-mandatory guidelines on the types of instructions employers should obtain from the supplier of the personal fall arrest system.

Subsection (e)(6) references the proper hook-up, anchoring, and tie-off techniques, including the proper dee-ring or other attachment point to use on the body belt and harness for fall arrest. A revision is proposed to delete the term "body belt". The effect on the regulated public will be to clarify to employers that body belts shall not be used for fall arrest.

Subsection (j). Free Fall Considerations.

Subsection (j) provides non-mandatory guidelines on the effects of free fall distances on users of personal fall arrest systems. A revision is proposed to delete the term "body belt". The effect on the regulated public will be to clarify to employers that body belts shall not be used for fall arrest.

Subsection (l). Obstruction Considerations.

Subsection (l) provides non-mandatory guidelines on the hazard of obstructions in the potential fall path of an employee using a fall arrest system, including obstructions that may interfere with the jack-knife motion an employee wearing a body belt may experience. A revision is proposed to delete the language referring to the use of body belts along with the jack-knife motion caused by the use of a body belt when arresting a fall. The effect on the regulated public will be to clarify to employers that body belts shall not be used for fall arrest.

DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE

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 1300 I Street, Suite 920, Sacramento, California.