Health & Safety Insights

Construction Compliance Confusion

Date: 9/14/2021


Construction regulations and best practices can be confusing to say the least. A considerable number of myths continue to persist, particularly in the areas of lifting devices, falls and multi-employer sites. We’ll debunk three common myths in these areas to provide the facts you need to run a safe, compliant jobsite.



MYTH: OSHA requires that daily forklift inspections be completed in writing.  

FACT: Believe it or not, OSHA does not actually require daily forklift inspections to be documented or written. That means there are no specific record retention times set if you do decide to document your inspections. However, even though not required, using an inspection checklist, either written or electronic, is a good idea for two reasons:

  • Ensures that all essential features of the vehicle are inspected routinely, and
  • Provides evidence to an OSHA compliance officer that the vehicles are being inspected as required.



MYTH: You can’t tie off to a mobile construction crane’s hook.

FACT: OSHA’s 1926.1423(j) crane standard states that a personal fall arrest system is permitted to be anchored to a crane/derrick’s hook (or other part of the load line) when all of the following requirements are met:

  • (i)(1) A qualified person has determined that the set-up and rated capacity of the crane/derrick (including the hook, load line and rigging) meets or exceeds the requirements in §1926.502(d)(15). Anchorages used for attachment of personal fall arrest equipment shall be independent of any anchorage being used to support or suspend platforms and capable of supporting at least 5,000 pounds (22.2 kN) per employee attached
  • (i)(2) The equipment operator must be at the work site and informed that the equipment is being used for this purpose.
  • (i)(3) No load is suspended from the load line when the personal fall arrest system is anchored to the crane/derrick’s hook (or other part of the load line).



MYTH: The controlling employer must inspect for hazards as frequently as the employer it has hired.

FACT: The controlling employer is the one who has general supervisory authority over the jobsite, including the power to correct safety and health violations itself or require others to correct them. Control can be established by contract or, in the absence of such provisions, by the exercise of control in practice. The reason a controlling employer is not responsible for all theother contractors onsite is because a controlling employer must exercise “reasonable care” to prevent and detect violations on the site.

The extent of the measures that should be implemented is less than what is required of an employer with respect to protecting its own employees. This means that the controlling employer is not normally required to inspect for hazards as frequently, or to have the same level of knowledge of the applicable standards or of trade expertise as the employer it has hired.