OSHA Regulations for Crane Baskets

Written by tony oldhand
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OSHA Regulations for Crane Baskets
This man is working without a safety harness. (tightening down image by Pix by Marti from Fotolia.com)

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has strict guidelines for the design and use of crane baskets to prevent injury from falls, design flaws from objects falling from the baskets. If you work in crane baskets or from "bucket trucks," following or not following these safety guidelines could mean the difference between life and death.

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Design of Crane Baskets

OSHA guidelines for the design of crane baskets include these requirements:

1) Baskets must be designed by a qualified structural engineer or other professional. 2) Basket design must minimise tipping. 3) Baskets must be able to support their own weight plus five times the maximum intended load. 4) A guardrail system must be in place, along with anchor points for safety harnesses. 5) Hooking systems that attach the basket to the crane line must be able to be closed and locked.

Pre-lift Inspection

OSHA states that, before any lifting is done, the basket and supporting hardware must be thoroughly inspected for fraying of cables and lanyards; worn hooking mechanisms that do not lock properly; rusty clevis pins, hooks, guardrails or ancillary hardware; and rusty flooring or flooring support. If an inspection reveals any of these problems, the faulty hardware must be replaced with adequate or new hardware. Also, trial lifts must be done before workers are lifted in the crane basket.

Platform Regulations

The platform must have a guardrail, and a grab-rail system must line the entire inside perimeter. Access gates must be lockable to prevent accidental opening. The crane basket must not have rough edges that could cut a worker. And the basket must have enough headroom for the worker to stand upright.

Specifications for Personal Safety Equipment

OSHA also mandates personal protection equipment for people working in the crane basket. Workers must wear hard hat while in the crane basket and must wear lanyards attached to safety tie points. Safety glasses are required, and people in the crane basket must be visible to the crane operator, and vice versa.


OSHA's specifications, regulations and recommendations for workers using a crane basket are designed to prevent injury or death. Anyone working with this equipment should be aware of--and follow--these safety protocols.

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