The Massachusetts Department of Public Safety has developed proposed regulations that could exempt hundreds of manufacturing and warehouse companies from burdensome rules for licensing people who operate forklifts, overhead cranes and other hoisting equipment on company property.
State law requires individual licenses for every operator of even smaller pieces of hoisting equipment commonly used in smaller manufacturing facilities, retail outlets, warehouses and warehouse- type stores. AIM worked with state regulators two years ago to pass a law - signed by Governor Deval Patrick on October 14, 2010 - allowing the Department of Public Safety to streamline the existing regulations.
The proposed new regulations would expand the current exemption from the licensing and permitting requirements for public utilities to include companies operating certain hoisting equipment solely on company property - provided certain conditions are met. In order for the exemption to apply, the company must, among other requirements, have an employee training program approved by the commonwealth that meets the specifications of the new regulation.
The rules also impact temporary permits that may be issued by a short-term rental entity for the operation of compact hoisting machinery.
Individuals or organizations seeking to offer continuing education courses for individuals to be licensed to operate hoisting machinery must submit an application to the department. All courses must be monitored by a Massachusetts hoisting license holder and must offer a curriculum that, at a minimum, complies with detailed requirements for each class of hoisting machinery, as outlined in the proposed regulation.
The Department of Public Safety will be hold a public hearing to solicit comments on the proposed regulation on December 3 at 10 am at One Ashburton Place, Boston. Written comments are due by December 3. These new regulations may offer significant relief for entities using this equipment solely with the confines of their own property, but AIM urges all employers to review the proposed rules and contact us with comments.
The proposed regulation can be found here.
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