Federal agencies Agriculture, forestry and fishing

OSHA seeks volunteers to assist small-business panel on tree care safety

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Photo: Tree Care Industry Association Inc.

Washington — OSHA is planning to convene a Small Business Advocacy Review panel on a possible tree care operations safety standard early in 2020.

According to a Dec. 17 press release from the Small Business Administration, the potential standard would likely cover “employees who perform tree care operations, such as pruning, maintaining, repairing or removing trees, as well as establish safe work practices for such operations.” The regulation would apply to municipalities along with employers who “occasionally perform tree care and removal as part of their primary operations (e.g., residential and commercial construction and remodeling, landscaping, golf course maintenance, power and pipeline clearing, certain agricultural operations, etc.).”

SBA is seeking volunteers to assist the panel, namely from small businesses, small nonprofit organizations and small governmental jurisdictions. Employers potentially affected by the proposed rule are asked to contact Bruce Lundegren, assistant chief counsel at SBA, at bruce.lundegren@sba.gov or (202) 205-6144.

 

According to the Fall 2019 Unified Regulatory Agenda published Nov. 20, OSHA uses “a patchwork of standards” to address hazards in the tree care industry, which petitioned the agency for rulemaking more than a decade ago. OSHA issued an advance notice of proposed rulemaking in September 2008.

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