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ESH Manual Page: 10000: Material Handing and Transportation

It is the policy of the Sanford Underground Laboratory at Homestake (Sanford Laboratory), that all hoisting and rigging equipment, design, installation, inspection, testing, and operations activities shall be in accordance with OSHA and ANSI/ASME standards. A list of these standards is provided in section 6.2.


This chapter applies to all personnel and equipment used to perform any crane and hoist activity on the Sanford Laboratory.

Activities involving the following equipment are included - Cranes, hoists and miscellaneous lifting devices- Rigging hardware and accessories- Powered industrial vehicle (forklift) when used as a hoist

This chapter does not apply to the Ross and Yates Cage, Skip, or work platform hoists.


Crane - a device for lifting and lowering a load, and moving it horizontally. Cranes may be driven manually, by power, or by a combination of both.

Critical Lift - Load requires exceptional care in handling because of safety concerns, size, shape, close-tolerance installation, high susceptibility to damage, value, impact to operations, or other unusual factors.

Hoist - a machinery unit that is used for lifting or lowering a freely suspended (unguided) load. Hoists may be integral to a crane or mounted in affixed position, permanently or temporarily. Hoists may be hand-operated, air, or electric powered.

Initial Load Test – The test performed when a crane is newly installed or re-installed. Refer to ASME/ANSI B30.20. Although an initial service lift may exceed the capacity of the crane, it is not considered a “Planned Engineered Lift”.

Inspection – Inspections assess the condition of equipment to assure its ability to perform intended tasks.

Load - The total weight superimposed on the load block or hook. This includes not only the material being lifted but also all the rigging equipment necessary to attach the load to the load block; i.e., lines, shackles, rigging, etc.

Modified - A variation or alteration that changes the original configuration of the crane or adds other features not originally installed with the crane and impacts the crane's lifting capacity or load bearing components.

Person-in-Charge (PIC) – A Qualified Person appointed to be responsible for the safe execution of a Planned Engineered Lift or a Critical Lift.

Qualified Person - a person who, by possession of a recognized degree in an applicable field or a certificate of professional standing, or who by extensive knowledge, training, and experience, has successfully demonstrated the ability to solve or resolve problems relating to the subject matter and work.

Qualified Operator - A person who has successfully completed the training requirements outlined in this chapter and has been so designated by the division/section head.

Rated Load (Capacity) - The posted maximum load designated by the manufacturer for which a crane or individual hoist is designed and built.


4.1. Operations Departmentis responsible for

  • Maintaining an inventory of all hoists and cranes on site.
  • Performing or arranging for and documenting all required inspections and maintenance.
  • Developing and implementing a crane/hoist training program.This training program will include the incorporation of Lessons Learned from Hoisting and Rigging incidents on a ongoing basis.
  • Providing and documenting necessary training for any employee involved in hoist and crane operations.
  • Maintaining manuals and manufacturer information and records related to testing, inspection, and repair of overhead cranes and hoists.
  • Performing a yearly audit of its own compliance with this policy
  • Performing, supervising, or reviewing all major hoisting and rigging activities at Sanford Laboratories.
  • In conjunction with the EHS Department, conducting a biennial review of the Hoisting and Rigging Program, including a review of this policy to ensure it still meets Sanford Laboratory needs.

4.2. The EHS Department is responsible for:

  • Auditing Operations for compliance with the requirements of this Policy on an annual basis.
  • In conjunction with the Operations Department, conducting a biennial review of the Hoisting and Rigging Program, including a review of this policy to ensure it still meets Sanford Laboratory needs.

4.3. Engineering Department is responsible for:

  • Providing consultation and design of all new overhead cranes and hoists that are attached to building structural supports.
  • Arranging for an initial inspection of all new, modified or re-installed overhead bridge cranes, hoists and monorails that are attached to building structural supports.
  • At the request of Operations Department, assisting with the selection of a qualified contractor to perform annual inspection, testing, maintenance and repair of cranes.

4.4. Supervisors and Foremen are responsible for

  • Assuring that employees assigned to perform rigging or crane/hoist operation duties are properly trained and qualified to perform the work assigned. Successful completion of crane/hoist training is necessary, but not necessarily sufficient, to deem a person qualified to perform all rigging and crane operation tasks.
  • Ensuring that documentation on cranes and hoists is maintained.
  • Ensuring that all cranes and hoists within their areas of responsibility are inspected, tested, maintained, and repaired as required in this document.
  • Assuring that service contractors who may perform inspections, testing, maintenance and repair of hoists and cranes are qualified and have adequate oversight.
  • Ensuring that lift plans are submitted for all Critical Lifts• For Planned Engineered or Critical Lifts, appointing a qualified Person-in-Charge.

4.5. The EHS Department is responsible for:

  • Providing support to supervisors and foremen regarding the safety of crane and hoist operations and training opportunities.
  • Assisting with the interpretation of standards.
  • Auditing the Operations Department on an annual basis for compliance with this policy.
  • Assisting with training, as requested.

4.6. Project Manager (PM)is responsible for:

  • Ensuring contractors under their supervision are trained with respect to the requirements of this policy.
  • Coordinating with the Operations Department all hoisting and crane activities.
  • Verify the all contractors are trained and/or certified to operate hoists and cranes.
  • Ensuring that lift plans are completed where required (even outside certified crane/hoist operators are required to develop lift plans for critical lifts).

4.7. The Person-in-charge is responsible for:

  • Reviewing the Job Hazards Analysis (JHA) and lift plan for planned engineering and Critical Lifts with all involved or affected by the lift before the lift is initiated.
  • Directing the operation of assigned lift in accordance with the JHA, lift plan, and all appropriate rigging and lifting as defined by Sanford Laboratory standards.
  • Identification of appropriately trained individuals participating in the lift. The skill level of each participant in the lift shall be commensurate with the assigned duty.

4.8. The Qualified Operator is responsible for:

  • Recognizing if a lift or rigging task is within his/her capability based on previous experience or training. If level of training or experience is insufficient to assure a safe lift, the operator must state this to their supervisor or the Person-in-Charge and not proceed with the task.
  • Following best practices in rigging and hoisting to assure a safe lift.
  • Identify hazards and mitigations associated with the hazard, including appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE).
  • Identifying appropriately trained individuals, if required, to participate in the lift. The skill level of each participant in the lift shall be commensurate with the assigned duty.
  • Performing a pre-lift inspection of lift site location. If a problem or situation appears to not be safe, or if the crane is not operating properly, contact the Operations Department to have a pre-lift inspection/repair completed.
  • Conducting crane inspection and checks prior to use.
  • Inspecting slings, fastenings and attachments for damage or defects prior to each use and remove from service if damaged or defective. (See Slings, Rigging Hardware, and Below-The-Hook Lifting Devices .)
  • Ensuring the sling identification is legible and shows the rated capacities for each type of hitch (vertical, basket and choke). (See Slings, Rigging Hardware, and Below-The-Hook Lifting Devices .)
  • Performing lift in accordance with any formal hazard analysis (JHA) or lift plan, if one exists.


5.1. Training

Line management is responsible for ensuring that personnel who perform hoisting and rigging activities, such as design of lifting fixtures, inspection of equipment, preparation and approval of lift plans, and review of equipment compliance, are qualified to do so. A person may be qualified to inspect one type of equipment but not qualified to inspect another. When designating personnel to perform hoisting and rigging functions, line management must be specific as to the scope and limitations of the designation

5.2. Operations Personnel

Overhead crane/hoist activities may only be performed by qualified individuals who have a certified crane/hoist inspection course.

5.3. Incidental Operator Qualification

Individuals who do not operate overhead cranes on a regular basis (several times a week) may operate Sanford Laboratory cranes/hoist only when they have provided evidence of qualifications and training and demonstrate to the Sanford Laboratory subject matter expert their competency to operate the specific hoist. The following are conditions for Incidental crane/hoist operation.

  • Permission to use a Sanford Laboratory crane is required from the Operations Department.
  • The Project Manager or Supervisor overseeing the work activity reviews the qualifications and training of Incidental Operator.
  • Contractor use of cranes/hoist (regardless of whether the crane is owned by Sanford Laboratory or the Contractor) should be included in the Procurement exhibits and must be in the written hazard analysis when applicable.

The Sanford Laboratory Hoisting and Rigging Subject Matter Expert evaluates the Incidental Operator’s ability to operate each hoist involved in the planned work and is satisfied that the Incidental Operator has the skill to operate the hoist(s) safely either with or independent of oversight.

5.4. Control of Cranes and Hoists • The Operations Department shall develop means to restrict crane and/or hoist use by unqualified personnel (e.g., restricting access, locking crane controls or hoist chains, or other appropriate measures - generally by use of administrative configuration locks (See Lockout/ Tagout (LOTO) Verification ).• The Director of Operations will only allow individuals who have provided evidence of their training and competency to operate overhead cranes at Sanford Laboratory.

5.5. Inspection, Maintenance, and Repair

The Operations Department is responsible for assuring cranes and hoists are inspected annually and maintained/repaired as necessary. If a crane is not inspected annually because of lack of use or location in an inaccessible area it must be inspected before it is placed back in service. Sanford Laboratory employees who are qualified may to perform repairs on the existing cranes and hoists A. Annual inspections and Repairs

  • Only cranes and hoists that have been inspected and certified within the past year may be operated
  • Records associated of inspections shall be maintained by the Operations Department.
  • Repairs to Sanford Laboratory cranes may only be performed by qualified Operations Department personnel or a qualified outside contractors.

B. Pre-Use (Daily) Inspection

The pre-operational inspection is a non-recorded inspection to identify obvious discrepancies. Inspections shall be conducted per the manufacturer’s instructions.

5.6. Crane/Structure Modification

Structural modifications or extensive repairs to cranes and hoists that may impact the load capacity of the building structural components shall only be done after the plans being reviewed by the Engineering Department and approved by the manufacturer before proceeding with the reviewed application.

5.7. New, Re-Installed, Altered, Repaired, and Modified Cranes and Hoists Operational Tests

New, re-installed, altered, repaired, and modified cranes shall be tested by a qualified person prior to initial use according to the manufacturer’s specifications.

Prior to being placed into service; equipment is evaluated by qualified shall verify that equipment is:

  • Assigned to a designated equipment custodian
  • Uniquely identified and registered in the H&R Equipment Database
  • Designed, engineered, manufactured, inspected, and tested to meet applicable requirements
  • Given an initial inspection
  • Authorized and released for use

5.8. Load Tests

New, re-installed, altered, repaired and modified cranes shall be load tested prior to initial use as determined by the qualified person.

A load test performed at Sanford Laboratory shall not be less than 100% of the rated load of the crane or more than 125% of the rated load of the crane.

5.9. Crane Damage

When a crane is damaged or fails operational testing, it shall be tagged and locked out of service by the Operations Department (See Lockout/ Tagout (LOTO) Verification ).

Incidents resulting in damage to a crane shall be investigated and documented by the Operations Department.

The crane shall not be returned to service until it has been repaired and appropriate acceptance testing is conducted.

5.10. Cranes Supporting Work Platforms

Using a crane platform may be a suitable alternative method to perform maintenance activities. Workers using the crane as a work platform face several hazards, which include mechanical pinch points, overhead hazards and electrical shock and fall hazards.

Prior to starting work from a crane platform, a job hazard analysis ( Job Hazards Analysis Form ) shall be performed and the actions or precautions taken must address the hazards and the conditions stated below:

  • A. Work cannot be performed from a suspended load or hook.
  • B. Fall protection and standard guardrails shall be provided and used.
  • C. Ladders shall not be used on cranes to gain access to areas that are not directly accessible from a crane without the use of a ladder.
  • D. Only a qualified electrician shall be permitted to perform work on or near electrical equipment ( Electrical Safety ).
  • E. Machinery and live electrical equipment shall be guarded.
  • F. Work from cranes shall be performed only when a crane is stationary.
  • G. Crane operators shall be notified before work is performed from a crane.
  • H. Crane shall not be moved until all employees on the crane are in locations where they will not be exposed to injury.
  • I. Rail stops or other suitable methods shall be used to prevent a crane from being struck, whenever other cranes are in operation on the same runway.
  • J. Signs, which indicate work is being performed, shall be posted whenever work is performed from a crane (on the crane or from a manbasket hanging below the crane). Such signs shall be visible from the floor.
  • K. Lockout/Tagout procedures shall be implemented, as appropriate, when work is being performed from a crane.
  • L. Safe egress to and from a crane shall be provided.
  • M. Work performed from a manbasket hanging below the crane is permitted only if ASME B30.23 is followed and that both the crane and manbasket are inspected prior to work being performed.

The EHS Department Director shall approve Crane Lifted Work Platform lifts.

5.11. Performing Lifts

A. All Lifts

  • Must be performed as planned. Any deviation must be made in accordance with the departmental work authorization protocol.
  • Only trained, qualified, and authorized personnel will be allowed to rig loads or operate cranes or hoists.
  • All pre-use inspections for hoists, cranes, and hoisting and rigging hardware and accessories must be performed prior to the lift.
  • Personnel must not place any part of their body under a suspended load. However, if no alternative exists and the work must be performed under a suspended load, this may be done but the lift must be performed as a high hazard lift (see below).
  • Must have a designated leader
  • Deviations from the established lift planning must be reviewed by the designated leader, and the first-line supervisor may be consulted as necessary.

B. Critical Lifts

• When lifting a load that exceeds 85% of the rated capacity of the hoist requires exceptional care in handling because of its size, shape, close tolerance installation, a high susceptibility to damage, value, impact to operations, or other unusual factors

• A written lift plan will be developed that includes the following:

a. Identification of the Person-in-Charge (PIC) of the lift, other than the operator to oversee the lift.

b. Detailed plan including equipment, PPE, and description of how critical connections will be mad.

c. Pre-lift inspection of lift site location.

d. Pre-lift inspection of equipment.

A Post-lift critique shall be written, if beneficial, to identify any lessons learned.

C. High Hazard Lifts

  • Any lift that requires a worker to place any part of his or her body under a suspended load requires mitigation measures and management level approval (department head or higher) from that worker’s department. Mitigation measures must prevent the body or body parts from being struck against or impacted by the load. For example, a lift plan could incorporate a structure or support that would protect the worker from the suspended load if it were to drop or swing while the worker is under the load.
  • The document used to describe the high hazard activity (job safety analysis [JSA], work integration plan [WIP], or lift plan) must clearly describe what parts of the body will be under the load, the mitigation measures used, and management’s approval.

D. Lifting of Personnel

Any hoisting and rigging activities that involve lifting of personnel must receive prior written approval by the EHS Director.

5.12. Records

  • The EHS Department will maintain all training records.
  • The Operations Department shall maintain the following records:
    • Planned engineered lifts
    • Monthly and annual inspections
    • Modifications or additions to overhead cranes

6.1. Related Documents• Slings, Rigging Hardware, and Below-The-Hook Lifting Devices (EHS-7007-L1-01)

6.2. Appendices• Crane Operator’s Monthly Inspection Report (EHS-7007-L4-04)

6.3. Standards

  • 29 CFR 1910, Subpart N, OSHA General Industry Standards - Materials Handling and Storage.
  • 29 CFR 1926 Subpart N, OSHA Construction Standard - Cranes, Derricks, Hoists, Elevators, and Conveyers
  • ANSI/ASME B30.10 (Hooks)
  • ANSI/ASME B30.11 (Monorails and Underhung Cranes)
  • ANSI/ASME B30.16 (Overhead Hoists (Underhung))
  • ANSI/ASME B30.17 (Overhead and Gantry Cranes (Top Running Bridge, Single Girder, Underhung Hoist))
  • ANSI/ASME B30.2 (Overhead and gantry cranes)
  • ANSI/ASME B30.21 (Manually Lever Operated Hoists)
  • ANSI/ASME B30.22 (Articulating Boom Cranes)
  • ANSI/ASME B30.23 (Personnel Lifting Systems)