Proposed Maritime Rules Lost at Sea

Talk about procrastination: OSHA is withdrawing four proposed safety standards for shipyard employment, 14 years after they were originally published.

Talk about procrastination: the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is withdrawing four proposed safety standards for shipyard employment, 14 years after they were originally published.

The agency says it only got a few comments on each rule, which were developed to update and consolidate coverage of various shipyard hazards into one standard, and that the comments "provided insufficient information on which to proceed."

A press release from OSHA notes that since the proposed rules were published on Nov. 29, 1988, "newer technologies have been developed … and would need to be incorporated before final rules could be issued."

The specific proposed rules being withdrawn are Scaffolds in Shipyard Employment, Subpart N; Welding, Cutting and Heating in Shipyard Employment, Subpart D; Access and Egress in Shipyards, Subpart E; and Fall Protection for Shipyard Employment, Subpart M. The hazards that these revised rules would address are currently covered under the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, 29 CFR, Part 1915, Subparts D, E and I.

The agency plans to devote its resources "to higher priority shipyard standards," although no specific standards were mentioned.

For more information, go to www.osha.gov/dts/maritime/index.html.

by Sandy Smith ([email protected])

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