Construction worker injured at Ridgefield job site flown to hospital


By Jessica Prokop, Columbian Courts Reporter



A construction worker who suffered serious injuries Friday morning when he fell from the top of a two-story house in Ridgefield was flown via helicopter to a local hospital.

The man, identified by Ridgefield police as 55-year-old Rodrigo Baltazar-Martinez, was in critical condition late Friday afternoon, according to a hospital spokesman.

Police and first responders with Clark County Fire & Rescue were called at about 8:45 a.m. to the area of North 35th Avenue and Pioneer Canyon Drive for a man who fell off the roof of an under-construction, two-story house.

Division Chief Tim Dawdy said paramedics began treating the man at the scene but, due to the serious nature of his injuries, activated LifeFlight.

He was flown to the trauma center at PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center in Vancouver, Dawdy said.

Reposted from Guardian Fall Protection Blog

As promised, this week we return to the OSHA 1910 General Industry update. Last week we covered some of the major issues, and if you missed it, go back and have a read – there are some things you need to know. And now, without further delay, let’s continue to wade through the 1910 tome.


Rope descent systems, anchorages in particular, are also now addressed by the 1910 regulations. Instead of relying on consensus standards for anchor inspection and certification as in the past, OSHA now requires that before use, “…the building owner must inform the employer, in writing, that the building owner has identified, tested, certified, and maintained each anchorage so it is capable of supporting 5,000 pounds in any direction…” By OSHA’s own estimates, somewhere around “… 487,500 buildings will require annual inspections and decennial (every 10 years) certifications.” Of that total, OSHA estimates a tenth (48,750) of the buildings’ anchorages will need to be qualified, and 1,734 anchorages will need to be replaced. That’s a lot of work, and this on anchorages that are already installed and presumed to be in use. If you are on either side of a rope descent system, make SURE your anchorages have been inspected and certified by a Qualified Person – no excuses.


Speaking of Qualified Persons, OSHA changed the definition of “qualified” to be more in line with 1926.32(m), but fell short (despite several commenter’s wishes) to require a Qualified Person to be an engineer. OSHA pushed back on this suggestion by saying that because the rule required the “demonstrated ability to solve or resolve problems,” it would be more effective than an otherwise unproven degree. Basically, they are saying that actions speak louder than words; if you can prove through your past work and also certification testing that you are capable of “performing the required functions,” it shows that you possess the requisite knowledge of a Qualified Person. Furthermore, because 1910.27 requires anchorages for rope descent systems be inspected and certified before use and periodically thereafter, OSHA, “…believes that building owners will likely consult and work with engineers to ensure that all building anchorages…meet the requirements in 1910.27.”  This is sort of a “trust but verify” approach to the Qualified Person. OSHA is fine with non-engineers being qualified persons because their work will then be certified though testing that it meets OSHA’s strength requirements.

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Additionally, OSHA updated the definition of Competent Person to, as you might expect, align with the 1926 Construction standards. Whereas the existing definition stated a Competent Person, “…is capable of identifying hazardous or dangerous conditions…and of training employees to identify such conditions,” the new definition includes “existing and predictable hazards in any personal fall protection system…component…[and] application,” and very importantly, “…the authorization to take prompt corrective measures to eliminate the identified hazards.” This latter addition now confers much responsibility and authority to the Competent Person in the general industry setting. This change was partly in response to many commenters who expressed concern that having limited authority means that a Competent Person could identify a hazard, but could not do anything about it. Now, they can. Well, after they get the proper training of course. Just because OSHA has added a level of responsibility the Competent Person, doesn’t mean that an existing Competent Person (as defined by 1910 in General Industry) is fully prepared to make decisions regarding the new fall protection options. Remember: new rules, new training.  Now that the Competent Person will also assess fall protection solutions within the General Industry, they need to know what to look for – proper training is the answer.


We hope our exploring the new 1910 regulations has helped you understand a bit more of how these changes will affect you and your operations in the years to come. Remember, the new regulations go into effect January 17, 2017, so by the time you read this, you are probably already under their authority. With that in mind, there’s a lot of work to do – so get going, and be safe up there.

Reposted from Guardian Fall Protection Blog

As you’ve no doubt heard by now, OSHA has updated its 1910 General Industry regulations regarding walking-working surfaces and personal protective equipment, which will go into effect January 17, 2017. Since its release, we’ve been sifting through, picking out what we feel are the most impactful updates and what they mean to you. There are quite a few changes in the 513 (yes, I said 513!) page update that strike a chord,** most of which were much-needed, and will hopefully make choosing the right fall protection easier and ultimately, make working at height safer.


Before I get into specifics, I’ll go out on a limb (with proper fall protection, of course), and say that in general, I note a sense of convergence in the new regulations. If there is an over-arching trend, it is that General Industry standards for walking-working surfaces and personal protective equipment are starting to look a lot like the 1926 Subpart M standards for Construction. That’s a good thing. Based on what we hear from customers, there is already enough confusion regarding OSHA regulations and which one(s) should be engaged with for a certain activity. When two workers can do the same job and be held to different safety standards, it’s time to take a step back and re-evaluate the situation.


Perhaps the most wide-ranging change is the addition of personal fall protection systems and safety nets as a stated option for protecting workers from falls. The existing standard specifies only a “standard railing (or the equivalent…)” is suitable in such situations, which left many workers and supervisors at a loss to comply. In situations where workers chose a personal fall protection system over a guardrail, they could actually be levied a de minimis violation – under certain circumstances. By expanding the standards to allow more options to protect the worker, OSHA will allow employers/workers to use the system they feel protects them the best, and is most suitable for the specific situation. These include, but are not limited to: personal fall arrests systems, fall restraint, and work positioning systems. Surely many workers at one time or another have crossed the OSHA 1910 and 1926 standards line and been frustrated at having to change their preferred method of protection. This will no longer be the case.

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Hand-in-hand with expanding the options for fall protection is the requirement for training. After all, if a worker does not know how to identify fall hazards, or to properly wear and use personal fall protection, what good is it? The good news is that workers will be even more knowledgeable about fall protection hazard identification and mitigation. The bad news is that you’ve already lost a month of time (of the 6 months OSHA has allowed) to be compliant with the new training standard. As stated in 1910.30 (a)(1), “…employers must ensure employees are trained in the requirements of this paragraph on or before May 17, 2017.”  Even though the new regulations were released just ahead of the busy holiday season, the clock is ticking to get trained and to also document that the training has occurred. After all, if you can’t prove to OSHA you’ve been trained, how will they know you have?


Fixed ladders are also severely affected by the update. To understand these changes, you will need to know two dates: November 19, 2018, and November 18, 2036. All existing fixed ladders taller than 24’ (those installed now, or until the cut-off) MUST have a cage, well, ladder safety system, or personal fall arrest system in place by November 19, 2018. This delay gives employers two years in which to get compliant with the current 1910.27 standard if they are not already. After November 19, 2018, all new or repaired fixed ladder installations over 24’ will no longer be allowed to have cages or wells as the sole means of fall protection, but must have a ladder safety system or personal fall arrest system. Employers will then have 20 years, until November 18, 2036, to replace all cages and wells on existing ladders and install a ladder safety system or personal fall arrest system. In a nutshell, after November 18, 2036, OSHA will no longer allow cages or wells on fixed ladder installations, period. For employers faced with the task of getting current with the existing standard, while technically you are allowed to install a cage and then replace it sometime over the next couple decades, why not just be ahead of the game and install the safest system now and save yourself the trouble of having to address the ladder again in the future??


Is your head swimming yet?  Mine too…  As you can gather, the 1910 update includes some pretty comprehensive changes. But we’re not finished yet! For the sake of our collective sanities, I’m going to stop here and leave the rest of the changes for a second installment. Considering the updates already discussed, you’ve probably got enough work to do to get up to speed anyway. To read the 1910 update yourself, grab a cup (or gallon) of coffee, and follow this link. Until next time, Be Safe Up There!

**If you got this reference you must be a musician. If you didn’t, here’s the skinny: Everyone knows that there are scales in music; you’ve heard variations of these in every song you’ve ever heard, especially classical (look up Paganini for good examples). Combinations of the notes within a scale make a chord. These are what modern angst-filled troubadours strum in dimly-lit, woody coffee houses filled with sweater-wearing friends all across the nation. But what makes a chord? For a major chord, which could be considered the basic chord of any scale, it is the first, third, and fifth note of the scale. So, for a G major scale (G A B C D E F# G), a G major chord is G, B, and D, or 1, 3, 5. You can arrange these in any order you want (thus the 513 reference), but as long as you are playing the first, third, and fifth notes of the scale, you’ve got a major chord! Your third-grade teacher was right – math (and music) is everywhere! OK, lesson over, back to work!
Tuesday, 03 January 2017 00:00

Changes to the ANSI A92 Standards

Written by

Recap of the Pending ANSI/CSA Standards – Everything is Changing

Reposted from Aerial Pros Author Scott Owyen - Training Manager Genie Aerial Pros

ANSI (United States) and CSA (Canada) standards have, for almost four decades, provided best practices for safe, reliable access to work at height and have delivered a consistent benchmark for safe machine design in North America. Standards set a safety level for all participants in the market. Good standards also bring global markets closer together, driving commonality and stronger market competition.


ANSI and CSA both require periodic updates to all standards. The updating process include a review of any ISO standards that apply to the products being addressed. Benefits from incorporating ISO concepts in the new ANSI/CSA standards include: North American aerial lift manufacturers, including Genie, will be more closely aligned with global markets like Europe, Australia and China.

These changes will allow aerial owners to more easily trade new and used equipment in many countries. due to increased world-wide commonality of aerials.

 When are the standards changing?
The new CSA B354 standards are expected to be finalized and published in Q1, 2017, and go into effect in early 2018.

The new ANSI A92 standards are expected to be finalized and published in Q2, 2017, and go into effect mid-2018.

Once the final standards are approved, all aerial equipment brands and manufacturers serving North American customers will have one year to comply.

What is changing?

  • Equipment Terminology
  • Equipment Design Standards
  • Safe Use and Planning
  • Risk Assessment Planning
  • Training (Operators, Supervisors & Occupants)
  • Maintenance and Repair Personnel Training

Equipment Terminology

Aerial Work Platforms (AWPs) will now become known as Mobile Elevating Work Platforms, or MEWPs. The word “mobile” is important because it means that the equipment can be driven, either under its own power or by manual effort; it is not stationary.

In previous iterations of the standards, AWPs were classified by product types, such as booms, scissors and so on. In the new standards, MEWP classifications are made up of a combination of two key distinguishing descriptions:

  1. a MEWP Group
  2. an associated MEWP Type

A MEWP Group is determined by the platform location in reference to the equipment’s tipping line, which is either at the wheels or the outriggers.

A Group A machine has a design that does not allow the main platform to extend beyond the tipping line. In other words, the platform does not go outside of the drive chassis envelope. A perfect example of a Group A would be a scissor lift.

Conversely, a Group B machine has a design that allows the platform to extend beyond the tipping line. A great example of a Group B machine would be an articulating or telescopic boom.

A MEWP Type is in reference to the equipment’s ability to travel:

  • Type 1 – Traveling is allowed only with the MEWP in its stowed position
  • Type 2 – Traveling with the work platform in the elevated position is controlled from a point on the chassis
  • Type 3 – Traveling with the work platform in the elevated travel position is controlled from a point on the work platform


Type 2 MEWPS are not as common as the others. In fact, Genie does not manufacture any machines within this category so for the purposes of this article, I will focus on Type 1 and Type 3 machines only.

An example of a Group A, Type 1 MEWP would be the Genie® AWP™ Super Series manually-propelled lifts. The platform never extends beyond the tipping line, and the machine is designed to only be moved with the platform in the stowed position.

The Genie TZ™-34 and TZ-50 trailer-mounted booms are examples of a Group B, Type 1 MEWP. The platform is designed to extend beyond the tipping line, and the machine is designed to only be moved with the platform in the stowed position.

An example of a Group A, Type 3 MEWP would be electric or rough terrain scissor lifts. The main platform never extends beyond the tipping line, and machine travel is controlled from the platform controls.

Articulated and telescopic booms are examples of a Group B, Type 3 MEWP. The platform is designed to extend the tipping line, and machine travel is controlled from the platform controls.

Equipment Design Standards

In addition to the terminology and language changes in the new ANSI A92 and CSA B354 standards, the standards also include several big changes to the equipment itself:

  • Platform Load Sense (aka Overload System or Load Sense System) — All MEWPs will be required to continuously check the weight in the platform and disable certain functions if the load is above the platform load limit.
  • Dynamic Terrain Sensing — Drive and certain boom functions must be disabled when out of their slope limit and functions restricted only to those that safely return the machine to terrain that is within limits.
  • Indoor-only Machines — Allows for the development of smaller, lighter-weight MEWPs bearing an “indoor only” rating because these MEWPs cannot be used in conditions where they might be subjected to any wind.

In addition to the changes highlighted above, there will be many other alterations including:

  • Toeguards on work platform entrances
  • Prohibited use of chain gates and flexible gates
  • Reduced lift and lower speeds on some models.

Safe Use and Planning

The user must develop a Safe Use Program specific to MEWPS which must include, but not be limited to:

  1. Performing a site risk assessment;
  2. Selection, provision and use of a suitable MEWP and associated equipment;
  3. An assessment that the support surface is adequate to support the weight of the MEWP;
  4. MEWP maintenance including inspections and repairs as required;
  5. Inform the operator of local site requirements and warn and provide the means to protect against identified hazards;
  6. Have a trained and qualified supervisor to monitor the performance or the work of the operator;
  7. Prevention of unauthorized use of the MEWP;
  8. Safety of persons not involved in the operation of the MEWP.

Risk Assessment and Rescue Planning

The risks associated with the task specific to MEWP operations shall be identified. These might be associated with the location where the work is to be carried out, the nature of the MEWP or the personnel, materials and equipment to be carried.

  • Identify control measures
  • Identify safe work procedures
  • Rescue from height
  • Communicate the results

The user must develop a written rescue plan that will be carried out in the case of machine breakdown, platform entanglement or fall from platform. The plan shall be put in writing and become part of the company’s training manual.

All occupants must receive training that explains procedures to follow if they fall and await rescue or witness another worker’s fall. This plan must limit the time that a properly restrained worker hangs suspended in the air. Rescue plans can include the following:

  1. Self-rescue – by the person involved
  2. Assisted rescue – by others in the work area
  3. Technical rescue – by emergency services

Training (Operators, Supervisors & Occupants)

To prepare for these standards changes, it is important for users (most commonly the employer) to understand several significant changes.

Supervisor Training (ANSI only)
The user must ensure that all personnel that directly supervise MEWP operators are trained in the following areas:

  • Proper selection of the correct MEWP for the work to be performed;
  • The rules, regulations and standards that apply to MEWPs, including the provisions for safe use as defined in ANSI A92.22 Training and Familiarization, and the work being performed;
  • Potential hazards associated with use of MEWPs and the means to protect against identified hazards;
  • Knowledge that the manufacturer’s operating manual(s) are an integral part of the equipment and need to be stored properly in the weather resistant compartment on the MEWP.

Occupant Training
The MEWP operator must ensure that all occupants in the platform have a basic level of knowledge to work safely on the MEWP.

  • The requirement to use fall protection and the location of fall protection anchors;
  •  Factors including how their actions could affect stability;
  • Safe use of MEWP accessories they are assigned to use;
  • Site specific work procedures the occupants must follow related to the operation of the MEWP;
  • Hazards related to the task at hand and their avoidance;
  • Manufacturer’s warnings and instructions;
  • At least one of the occupants must be provided with the knowledge to operate the controls in an emergency where the operator cannot.

Maintenance and Repair Personnel Training


Users must ensure that maintenance and repair personnel are trained by a qualified person to inspect and maintain the MEWP in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations, as well as ANSI and CSA standards.

In the case where a MEWP is being rented, arrangements must be made by the owner to identify the entity that will be responsible for the inspections and maintenance activities described in the standard:

Frequent Inspections — When the MEWP is put into service or has been out of service for three months.

Annual Inspections — Performed no later than 13 months after the previous Annual Inspection.

Final Comments

This article only scratches the surface of the changes that the industry will be facing. We encourage you to purchase a copy of the standards for you to achieve a full understanding of the requirements. Do not to underestimate the impact the introduction of the new ANSI/CSA standards will have and start preparing now for a smoother transition.

To help you interpret what’s included in the new standards, we offer articles that will assist you in understanding the new requirements and provide ongoing suggestions and support to help you navigate the changes.

With the implementation of the updated ANSI/CSA standards, we continue to evaluate and manufacture our products to meet the most current industry standards worldwide and to provide our customers with innovative work at height solutions.

WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration today issued a final rule updating its general industry Walking-Working Surfaces standards specific to slip, trip, and fall hazards. The rule also includes a new section under the general industry Personal Protective Equipment standards that establishes employer requirements for using personal fall protection systems.

"The final rule will increase workplace protection from those hazards, especially fall hazards, which are a leading cause of worker deaths and injuries," said Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Dr. David Michaels. "OSHA believes advances in technology and greater flexibility will reduce worker deaths and injuries from falls." The final rule also increases consistency between general and construction industries, which will help employers and workers that work in both industries.

OSHA estimates the final standard will prevent 29 fatalities and more than 5,842 injuries annually. The rule becomes effective on Jan. 17, 2017, and will affect approximately 112 million workers at seven million worksites.

The final rule's most significant update is allowing employers to select the fall protection system that works best for them, choosing from a range of accepted options including personal fall protection systems. OSHA has permitted the use of personal fall protection systems in construction since 1994 and the final rule adopts similar requirements for general industry. Other changes include allowing employers to use rope descent systems up to 300 feet above a lower level; prohibiting the use of body belts as part of a personal fall arrest system; and requiring worker training on personal fall protection systems and fall equipment.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to ensure these conditions for America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education, and assistance. For more information, visit

Atlanta – OSHA’s Fall Protection Standard (1926.501) is once again the agency’s most frequently cited standard.

This is the fifth year in a row that the Fall Protection Standard tops the annual list, which was presented Sept. 29 during the NSC Congress & Expo by Patrick Kapust, deputy director of OSHA’s Directorate of Enforcement Programs, and Safety+Health’s Senior Associate Editor Kyle W. Morrison.

“Fall protection systems are out there,” Kapust said during the presentation. "They're moderately priced. There's no reason your employees shouldn't be in them."

The preliminary list, which covers fiscal year 2015, is:

  1. Fall Protection (1926.501)
  2. Hazard Communication (1910.1200)
  3. Scaffolding (1926.451)
  4. Respiratory Protection (1910.134)
  5. Lockout/Tagout (1910.147)
  6. Powered Industrial Trucks (1910.178)
  7. Ladders (1926.1053)
  8. Electrical – Wiring Methods (1910.305)
  9. Machine Guarding (1910.212)
  10. Electrical – General Requirements (1910.303)

Finalized data, along with additional Top 10 details and exclusive content, will be published in the December issue of S+H.

On a regular basis Washington State, as well as other states publish FACE Reports that give a narrative of a particular accident where one or more employees were killed as well as what the employer should have done to prevent this accident from happening.


I subscribe to Washington, Oregon and California's FACE reports and use these reports to emphasize the importance of safety during my training classes.  In Washington, safety meetings are required to be done on a monthly basis at a minimum.  Furthermore the subject of the meetings must be documented as well as a list of attendees kept as proof that the safety meeting was done.  FACE reports are a great tool that can be used when you, the safety manager or employer, don't have subjects to talk about or don't know where to source material for a safety meeting.


The link below is the most current FACE report from Washington.  it describes an accident where a worker was killed while demoing structural steel.  Have a look...


Steel Collapse



Oregon OSHA

Construction Depot

Safety and health newsletter for the Oregon construction industry

February 22, 2016


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Graphic of an aerial lift accident

Aerial lifts: Don't forget to follow the manufacturer's instructions

What is the most important thing you should understand before you use an aerial lift? The information in the operator's manual. Many, if not most, work-related injuries involving aerial lifts happen when operators assume they know how to operate a lift, but do not follow the manufacturer's instructions. Regardless of the type of lift you use – a boom-supported lift or a scissor lift – you must follow the lift manufacturer's operating and maintenance instructions. Also, you must be trained by a person who understands the hazards associated with the lift.

What you must know

  • The manufacturer's instructions for operating the lift.
  • How to recognize and avoid operating hazards, such as overhead power-transmission lines.
  • The fall protection requirements associated with the lift.
  • How to handle materials on the lift and the lift's load capacity.
  • How to report lift defects or maintenance needs.

What you must do

  • Keep the operating manual with the lift.
  • Use the lift only for its intended purpose.
  • Know the lift's rated load capacity and don't exceed it.
  • Inspect the work area and the lift's path of travel for potential tip-over hazards.
  • Inspect the lift before using it to make sure that it is working properly.
  • Keep the lift level and stable; use outriggers and intermediate stabilizers.
  • Never move the lift when the boom is up and workers are on the platform, unless the manufacturer permits it.
  • Stand on the platform's floor. Don't sit or climb on the edge of the basket, guardrail, or midrail.
  • Close the access gate while you are working from the platform.
  • Stay at least 10 feet away from energized electrical power lines.
  • Never use the lift during severe weather.
  • Use warning signs or barricades to keep others out of the work area.
  • Never tie off to equipment or to a structure next to the platform.
  • Never use the lift to tow or pull anything.

Oregon OSHA's requirements for aerial lifts

How injuries happen: four examples

The following cases – taken from the Safety Notes column in past issues of Oregon OSHA's Resource newsletter – illustrate four different injury events involving aerial lifts. What did they have in common? The operators did not follow the instructions in the operator's manual.

Thumbnsil images of PDF containing Safety Notes

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Training Calendar

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