Table of Contents
Does OSHA Require Riggers To Be Certified?
Rigging in hoisting operations is only as strong as the weakest link. Workers’ lives are dependent on the strength of that link. As a result, standards state: “Employers must use qualified riggers during hoisting activities for assembly and disassembly work and whenever workers are within the fall zone and hooking, unhooking, or guiding a load, or doing the initial connection of a load to a component or structure.”
A rigger must be designated a “qualified rigger” in order to perform certain activities on the project site. This is in accordance with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) laws and regulations. A qualified rigger must meet two primary requirements:
- They must have a recognized degree, certification, or otherwise have extensive knowledge, training, and rigging experience.
- They must be able to demonstrate their capabilities in identifying hazards and implementing solutions to prevent or avoid these hazards.
To simplify this answer, yes, OSHA does require riggers to be certified and up to date with this certification before being able to rig loads on the job.
The Regulations Around Rigging: Safety Tips
- Before beginning a lift, check the weather conditions. If the weather is bad, postpone the lift until the weather improves.
- Check that the communication system that is in place with the rig operator is effective and functional.
- Obstructions such as buildings, poles, towers, power lines, antennas, satellite dishes, and so on should be avoided in the lift area and load path.
- Ensure that the receiving surface is sturdy, flat, and clear of loose items that may get hit when the load is delivered.
- Make sure to determine the weight of the load and its center of gravity.
- Determine the appropriate type of hitch based on the load.
- Before using any rigging hardware, inspect it thoroughly. Never utilize faulty hardware.
- Remove any faulty gear from service as soon as possible.
- When lifting goods with sharp edges, remember to protect your slings from cuts and tears.
- Make no shackle-to-shackle connections.
- Wear a hard hat and sturdy work gloves at all times.
- Check to see if your work boots or shoes have built-in toe protection. This protection is especially critical while you are getting a load.
- Plan to rig the load such that it is raised straight up whenever possible. This will prevent the load from swaying.
- Never connect two or more slings.
- Always use an appropriate-sized shackle to link two slings.
- Always use a shackle when attaching a sling to a lifting lug. Never thread a sling through lifting lugs or eyebolts. This puts too much strain on the lugs or eyebolts.
- On synthetic web slings, never choke below the threads.
What Are Common Rigging Certifications That Are Not Mandated by OSHA Requirements?
There are actually many courses and certifications available for you to purchase and achieve to help with your rigger qualifications but are not necessarily required by OSHA or other governing bodies.
Class of Construction
Outside of rigger signal person courses, training in the construction industry has even more to offer. For example, one of the most common optional safety trainings are OSHA 10 and OSHA 30-hour construction industry courses.
While the general industry does not normally coincide with employees in the construction industry, OSHA 10 and OSHA 30-hour general industry certifications are also a great, optional certificate to add to your rigging resume.
Who Is Considered To Be a Rigger Signal Person?
The signal person is responsible for safely guiding the crane operator in carrying the load from its rigging location to its predetermined destination. They are also in charge of ensuring that all activities involving crane operation are carried out safely.
Breaking Down the Difference Between Qualified Riggers & Certified Riggers
In the rigging industry, the phrases “qualified” and “certified” are used interchangeably. However, many construction professionals are completely unaware of the distinction.
OSHA regulations require qualified riggers during hoisting activities for assembly and disassembly work. They are also required when employees are inside the fall zone and hooking, unhooking, or guiding a load.
OSHA, on the other hand, does not require riggers to be “certified.” So, why is the certification of riggers important? What do these terms actually mean?
OSHA only loosely defines who qualifies as a qualified rigger, leaving the final decision to the employer. As stated previously, a qualified rigger is someone who has a recognized degree or meets other qualifications such as:
- Extensive knowledge
- Proper training
- Rigging experience
Riggers are not required to be certified by an approved organization or third party. A rigger with substantial hands-on experience but no official training or certifications may be regarded as qualified under these criteria.
A certified rigger is someone who has passed rigging-related written and practical exams. Rigger certification testing is provided by accredited organizations, as are many crane and rigging training institutes.
The majority of programs provide basic, intermediate, and advanced credentials. Advanced-certified riggers typically have extensive rigging experience as well as completion of master rigger courses and training.
Are Different Qualifications Required for Different Rigging Jobs?
Each load that requires rigging has its own set of characteristics that can range from basic to complex. A rigger, for example, may have substantial experience rigging structural components and other construction equipment when it comes to certain rigging tasks. Such knowledge could have been accumulated over a long period of time.
This experience, however, does not immediately qualify this rigger to rig unstable, extremely heavy, or eccentric loads that may necessitate the use of a tandem lift, multiple lifts, or custom rigging equipment.
In essence, an employer must ensure that the individual can perform the rigging work required for the specific types of loads and lifts for a certain assignment. They must also be competent to rig and operate the necessary equipment.
Therefore, yes, some riggers may be qualified for certain rigging jobs based on training and experience; however, these same riggers may not be qualified for other rigging jobs that require different training and experience.
What Do Our Rigging Courses Offer?
Here at Hard Hat Training, our rigging courses comply with OSHA safety regulations. All of our courses are also kept up to date and adhere to the most current safety standards. Meaning that our rigging courses are capable of informing, training, and certifying riggers. Here are some of the different rigging courses we offer:
- Rigger & Signal Person (Basic) Training
- Rigger & Signal Person (Intermediate) Training
- Rigger & Signal Person (Advanced) Training
Do Our Rigger Courses Meet Qualified Rigger Requirements?
Our rigger courses do fulfill the requirements necessary for qualifying a rigger. However, becoming a qualified rigger in your workplace is ultimately up to the employer. Our training course will give you the information and skills needed to demonstrate your capabilities as a rigger, but your employer will decide whether or not you will end up meeting their specific rigger qualifications.
Do Our Rigger Training Meet Certified Rigger Requirements?
Our rigger courses are designed to certify employees who successfully complete the course. Therefore, they also meet the qualifications for a certified rigger.