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Crane Hot Line

OSHA Stops Accepting CIC Certifications Until New Accreditation is Completed

OSHA’s Directorate of Construction has temporarily stopped accepting certifications that are issued by Crane Institute Certification (CIC) after Dec. 2.

OSHA is recognizing CIC certifications issued up to that date.

The temporary enforcement policy comes as a result of CIC’s accreditation having lapsed while its latest application for accreditation is in process.

OSHA requires organizations that certify crane operators to meet the requirements in 29 CFR 1926.1427(d) to be accredited in order to assure that the certification process meets required standards.

OSHA’s temporary enforcement memo says that although CIC is not currently accredited, OSHA recognizes that CIC was previously properly accredited and that CIC expects to receive accreditation in the next few months.

OSHA will revisit the temporary policy when CIC shows that it is accredited in accordance with the requirements in 29 CFR 1926.1427(d).

CIC CEO Headley Comments

In an exclusive interview with Crane Hot Line, CIC CEO James Headley said that the company’s current application for ANSI accreditation was, by CIC’s choice, extremely thorough and rigorous.

“CIC wants to make sure it not only reaches the threshold for accreditation, it wants to reach the highest standard of excellence, so our application was extremely thorough. As a result, it has taken ANSI extensive time to review and approve it. That longer processing time resulted in our previous accreditation having lapsed before the new accreditation has been completed.”

Headley says that the only remaining step for completion of ANSI’s accrediting of CIC is a two-day onsite audit by ANSI representatives to make sure processes are actually operating as presented in the application.

Headley expects the audit will take place in three to five weeks, although ANSI has not yet confirmed a date.

“OSHA’s honoring the certifications CIC has issued up to Dec. 2, and we will not issue any more certifications until we are accredited by ANSI,” Headley said. “Anyone who holds a CIC certification is good to go, and we look forward to again issuing certifications when our impending accreditation is complete.”   

Full Text of OSHA’s Memo

November 25, 2019




Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary


Directorate of Construction


Temporary Enforcement Policy- Certification Issued by Crane Institute Certification


Subpart CC—Cranes and Derricks in Construction requires crane operators to be certified by a certification body “accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting agency.” 29 CFR 1926.1427(d). The Crane Institute Certification (CIC) had previously been accredited by an organization that appeared to meet that requirement. However, CIC has informed OSHA it is not currently accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting agency. CIC also stated that it expects to receive that accreditation within the next few months. Therefore, operator certifications currently being issued by CIC do not meet the requirements of OSHA’s standard. Nevertheless, OSHA understands that CIC was previously accredited, and even after its accreditation lapsed, many employers may have acted in good faith by obtaining crane operator certifications from CIC that they believed would comply with OSHA’s requirements. The agency wishes to avoid unnecessary disruptions in the industry.

Temporary Enforcement Citation Policy

To eliminate construction industry confusion going forward, OSHA will consider whether crane operators acting in good faith obtained certifications issued by CIC prior to December 2, 2019 believing they met the requirements of the standard. Where such good faith is found, employers should not be cited for violating the operator certification requirement of 29 CFR 1926.1427(d). This policy will only apply until the expiration date listed on each certificate (that date cannot exceed the 5-year maximum specified in 29 CFR 1926.1427(d)(4)). OSHA will not accept CIC certification (including recertification) issued on or after December 2, 2019, as evidence of compliance with OSHA’s operator certification requirements in 29 CFR 1926.1427. Please contact the Directorate of Construction if there are any questions during compliance inspections about the validity of crane operator certifications issued by CIC.

OSHA intends to revisit this policy when CIC produces evidence that it is accredited in accordance with the requirements found in 29 CFR 1926.1427(d).


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