Federal Government to Institute Nationwide Certification Test for Crane Operators

In the wake of several deadly crane accidents nationwide, the Department of Labor has announced that it will soon require crane operators nationwide to pass a certification test (the first update of crane regulations in nearly four decades). Presently, only 15 states require a test; under the new rule, tests will be required in all 50 states.

According to Edwin Foulke, the assistant secretary of labor for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the new proposed rule "comprehensively addresses the hazards associated with the uses of cranes and derricks in construction, including tower cranes."

OSHA recently issued citations to three contractors with proposed penalties totaling $313,500 for alleged violations of safety standards after investigating the catastrophic March 15, 2008 collapse of a tower crane in New York City that killed seven people.