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Direct Final Rule issued by OSHA to protect demolition and underground construction workers

On August 17, 2012, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued a direct final rule and notice of proposed rulemaking applying the requirements set in the August 2010 cranes and derricks in construction standard to demolition and underground construction work.

The direct final rule applies the crane rules already used by most construction sectors to underground construction and demolition work. This change will help streamline OSHA's standards by removing the separate standard currently used for cranes and derricks in underground and demolition work. The new rule also fixes many errors that were noted in the 2010 standard, making it easier for workers and employers to understand and implement the standards.

OSHA's direct final rule will go into effect November 15, 2012, unless heavy opposition forms against the rule.

OSHA states that the construction industry has many inherent hazards, including falls, traffic hazards, crane accidents, and being struck by vehicles and equipment. Protect employees by providing high visibility safety vests and the appropriate safety products, including hard hats, respiratory protection, fall protection, and work gloves