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Subchapter 5. Electrical Safety Orders
Group 2. High-Voltage Electrical Safety Orders
Article 36. Work Procedures and Operating Procedures

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§2940.7. Mechanical Equipment.

(a) General.
(1) Prior to use on each shift, visual inspections and operational checks shall be made of equipment to determine that it is in safe operating condition.
(2) Truck warning devices shall comply with the provisions of Section 3706, General Industry Safety Orders, Title 8, California Code of Regulations.
(3) Hydraulic fluids used for the insulated sections of derrick trucks, aerial lifts, and hydraulic tools which are used on or near energized conductors or equipment shall provide insulation for the voltage involved.
(b) Aerial Lifts.
(1) Except as otherwise required or permitted by these orders, personnel aerial lift equipment used in the construction, operation or maintenance of electric power supply systems shall comply with the requirements of the General Industry Safety Orders, Title 8, California Code of Regulations, Article 24, Elevating Work Platforms and Aerial Devices.
(2)(A) When working near energized lines or equipment, aerial lift trucks shall be grounded or barricaded and considered as energized equipment, or the aerial lift truck boom shall be insulated for the voltage being worked on.
(B) Aerial lifts/digger derricks used for rubber gloving high voltage conductors and equipment energized over 7,500 volts shall have both upper and lower horizontal and vertical positioning controls. Both sets of controls shall be operational when high voltage work is being done.
(C) A minimum distance that must be extended shall be marked on the insulated portion of the boom on digger derrick vehicles to meet the dielectric capabilities required for the voltages involved. The minimum distance that shall be maintained is three (3) feet.
(D) When performing work on voltages above 7,500 volts, buckets of aerial lifts/digger derricks shall have insulating bucket liners with a liner bottom protector installed.
(E) Effective Feb. 23, 1998, insulating booms of aerial lifts/digger derricks used for work on energized high voltage conductors and equipment shall have a periodic dielectric test performed every 12 months in accordance with paragraph of American National Standard Institute (ANSI) Standard A92.2 (1990), Vehicle-Mounted Elevating and Rotating Aerial Devices, which is hereby incorporated by reference.
(F) Effective Feb. 23, 1998, insulated bucket liners used for work on energized high voltage conductors and equipment shall have a periodic dielectric test performed every 12 months in accordance with paragraph of American National Standard Institute (ANSI) Standard A92.2 (1990), Vehicle-Mounted Elevating and Rotating Aerial Devices, which is hereby incorporated by reference.
NOTE: Newly purchased and placed in service aerial lifts/digger derricks labeled or certified by the manufacturer as meeting the requirements of ANSI 92.2 (1990) are exempt from field testing for one year.
(3) Equipment or material shall not be passed between a pole or structure and an aerial lift while an employee working from the aerial lift is within reaching distance of energized conductors or equipment that are not covered with insulating protective equipment.
(4)(A) Employees in aerial lift equipment shall be secured to the lift equipment when in an elevated position by a lanyard attached to a safety belt, body belt or body harness.
(B) Safety belts/body belts are prohibited for use in personal fall arrest systems, but may be used as part of a fall restraint or positioning device system.
(C) Safety belts/body belts used as part of a positioning device system shall be rigged such that an employee cannot free fall more than 2 feet.
(D) A body harness may be used in a personal fall restraint, positioning or fall arrest system. When a body harness is used in a fall arrest system, the lanyard shall be rigged with a deceleration device to limit maximum arresting force on an employee to 1,800 pounds and prevent the employee from hitting any levels or objects below the basket or platform, and shall limit free fall to a maximum of 6 feet.
(5)(A) Climbing on the edge of a basket or work platform railing of aerial lift equipment or using planks across a basket or work platform railing for added height shall be prohibited. Except in an emergency involving immediate hazard to life, no employee shall be permitted to climb in or out of a basket or work platform with railings, unless it is in the cradle position; at ground level; or is equipped with a self-closing gate so designed and constructed that it will not open outwardly nor inadvertently.
(B) When an employee is elevated in aerial lift equipment without full controls at the upper level, there shall be an employee in the immediate vicinity of the lower level controls which must be “readily accessible” to that employee.
(6) Clearances. Metal booms, metal baskets, or metal platforms of personnel aerial lift equipment operated in accordance with Section 2949 shall not be brought closer than the distances specified in Section 2940.2 to any exposed energized conductors or equipment.
EXCEPTION: The insulated portion of an aerial lift operated by a qualified employee in the lift is exempt from this requirement if the applicable minimum approach distance is maintained between the uninsulated portions of the aerial lift and exposed objects having a different electrical potential.
(7) Visual Inspection. A visual inspection of personnel aerial lift equipment for defects and safe operating conditions shall be made daily, prior to use. Insulated sections of the boom shall be maintained in a clean condition.
(8) Shop Inspection. A shop inspection of personnel aerial lift equipment shall be made at such intervals as may be reasonably necessary to maintain the equipment in a safe operating condition. Inspection information shall be recorded by the owner of the equipment.
(9) Warning Lights. Approved-type flashing amber warning lights shall be installed and used on vehicles having personnel aerial lift equipment in use on a highway or when moving at a speed slower than the normal flow of traffic.
(10) Operating Controls. Articulating boom and extensible boom platforms, primarily designed as personnel carriers, shall have both platform (upper) and lower controls. Upper controls shall be in or beside the platform within easy reach of the operator. Lower controls shall provide for over-riding the upper controls. Controls shall be plainly marked as to their function. Lower level controls shall not be operated unless permission has been obtained from the employee in the lift, except in case of emergency.
(11) Stop Mechanism. Personnel aerial lift equipment shall be equipped with a stop mechanism readily available to the employee at the work platform in addition to controls at the truck level.
(12) Aerial lift equipment shall be operated to check each of its functions prior to each day's use. Only equipment in proper operating condition shall be used.
(c) Derrick Trucks, Cranes and Other Lifting Equipment.
(1) Derrick trucks, cranes and other lifting equipment shall comply with Articles 91 through 101 of the General Industry Safety Orders except:
(A) Section 2946, which contains provisions to prevent accidents due to overhead high voltage lines.
(B) Section 2940.2, which prescribes minimum approach distances for qualified electrical workers performing work.
(C) Derrick trucks (electric line trucks) shall not be required to comply with ANSI B30.5 and B30.6 as referenced in Section 4884, General Industry Safety Orders, Title 8, California Code of Regulations.
(2) For work to be performed by qualified electrical workers, a designated qualified employee other than the equipment operator shall observe the approach distance to exposed lines and equipment and provide timely warnings before the minimum approach distance required by Section 2940.2 is reached, unless the employer can demonstrate that the operator can accurately determine that the minimum approach distance is being maintained.
(3) Each employee shall be protected from hazards that could arise from mechanical equipment contact with energized lines or equipment. The measures used shall ensure that employees will not be exposed to hazardous differences in electric potential. Unless the employer can demonstrate that the methods in use protect each employee from the hazards that could arise if the mechanical equipment contacts the energized line or equipment, the measures used shall include all of the following techniques:
(A) Using the best available ground to minimize the time the lines or electric equipment remain energized,
(B) Bonding mechanical equipment together to minimize potential differences,
(C) Providing ground mats to extend areas of equipotential, and
(D) Employing insulating protective equipment or barricades to guard against any remaining hazardous electrical potential differences.
NOTE to subsection (c)(3): Appendix E to this section contains information on hazardous step and touch potentials and on methods of protecting employees from hazards resulting from such potentials.
(4) With the exception of equipment certified for work on the proper voltage, mechanical equipment shall not be operated closer to any energized conductor or exposed energized parts of equipment than the clearances set forth in Section 2940.2 unless, in addition to the requirements of Section 1612.3:
(A) an insulated barrier is installed between the energized part and the mechanical equipment, or
(B) the mechanical equipment is insulated.
(5) When setting, moving, or removing poles using cranes, derricks, gin poles, A-frames, or other mechanized equipment near energized conductors or equipment, precautions shall be taken to avoid contact with energized conductors or exposed energized parts of equipment except where barriers or protective devices are used.
(6) When a pole is set, moved, or removed near an exposed energized overhead conductor, the employer shall ensure that each employee wears electrical protective equipment or uses insulated devices when handling the pole and that no employee contacts the pole with uninsulated parts of his or her body.
(d) Hoisting Devices.
(1) A crane, boom, derrick, hoist, or winch shall not be loaded beyond the rated capacity or safe working load, whichever is smaller.
(A) Except as provided in (B) below, such devices shall not be left unattended while a load is suspended, unless the load is suspended over water, a barricaded area, or is blocked up or otherwise supported from below during repairs or emergency.
(B) While energized conductors are supported or suspended with an umbrella arm, auxiliary hot arm, or similar devices, and employees are working in an elevated position where the conductor movement could present a hazard to them, there shall be an employee at ground level at the pole or structure where the conductors are supported. The boom operating controls shall be readily accessible to such employee.
(2) During construction, operation or maintenance of power transmission and distribution systems, employees operating equipment such as cranes, booms, or derricks, shall not be permitted to stand on a grounded surface, other than the equipment itself, when such equipment is operated within 6 feet of exposed energized high voltage conductors or equipment. During movement of such cranes, booms, or derricks, employees on the ground shall be required to stay clear of the equipment.
(e) Hoisting Cables.
(1) Chains, wire ropes, and fiber ropes used for hoisting purposes shall be of sufficient strength to safely lift or otherwise handle the loads. The maximum allowable working loads shall be based on manufacturer's specifications.
(2) During construction, operation, or maintenance of power transmission and distribution systems, wire rope or chains, except slings, shall not be used to raise or lower transformers, poles or any other material within 6 feet of exposed energized high voltage conductors or equipment.
EXCEPTION: No. 1: When the cable is rigged below exposed energized conductors or equipment a sufficient distance (not less than specified in Section 2940.2(b) Table 2940.2) to prevent the possibility of electrical contact between such conductors or equipment and the cable or conductive material being raised or lowered.
EXCEPTION: No. 2: When the cable and any conductive material being raised or lowered are protected by insulating covering placed on such energized conductors or equipment.
Note: Authority cited: Section 142.3, Labor Code. Reference: Section 142.3, Labor Code.
1. Amendment of subsection (d)(1) filed 3-7-80; effective thirtieth day thereafter (Register 80, No. 10).
2. Editorial correction of subsection (c)(1)(A) filed 11-2-83 (Register 83, No. 45).
3. Amendment filed 12-10-87; operative 1-9-88 (Register 88, No. 1).
4. Amendment of subsection (b)(4)(A) filed 7-11-96; operative 8-10-96 (Register 96, No. 28).
5. Redesignation of subsection (b)(2) as new (b)(2)(A) and new subsections (b)(2)(B)-(F) filed 11-25-97; operative 12-25-97 (Register 97, No. 48).
6. Amendment of subsection (b)(4)(A), new subsections (b)(4)(B)-(D), amendment of newly designated subsection (b)(5)(A) and subsection renumbering filed 10-4-99; operative 11-3-99 (Register 99, No. 41).
7. Amendment of subsection (c)(2) filed 7-7-2011; operative 7-7-2011. Exempt from OAL review pursuant to Labor Code section 142.3(a)(3) (Register 2011, No. 27).
8. Amendment of subsection (c)(1), repealer of subsection (c)(1)(A), new subsections (c)(1)(A)-(B), subsection relettering and amendment of newly designated subsection (c)(1)(C) filed 4-28-2014; operative 7-1-2014 (Register 2014, No. 18).
9. Amendment filed 2-27-2018; operative 4-1-2018 (Register 2018, No. 9).

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