Frequently Asked Questions

What Are The Training Requirements For Cranes & Derricks Signal Persons?

Today's question comes from Daniel Heimall at Brayco Inc. Thanks Daniel!

Signal Person Training Requirements

29 CFR 1926.1428 Subpart CC - Cranes & Derricks in Construction requires each signal person to:


1926.1428(c)(1) - Know and understand the type of signals used. If hand signals are used, the signal person must know and understand the Standard Method for hand signals.
1926.1428(c)(2) - Be competent in the application of the type of signals used.
1926.1428(c)(3) - Have a basic understanding of equipment operation and limitations, including the crane dynamics involved in swinging and stopping loads and boom deflection from hoisting loads.
1926.1428(c)(4) - Know and understand the relevant requirements of § 1926.1419 through § 1926.1422 and § 1926.1428.
1926.1428(c)(5) - Demonstrate that he/she meets the requirements in paragraphs (c)(1) through (4) of this section through an oral or written test, and through a practical test.

Training Options for Cranes & Derricks Signal Persons

Option 1 - Third Party Qualified Evaluator

A signal person can get a certification from a third party qualified evaluator. OSHA defines this as:

"an entity that, due to its independence and expertise, has demonstrated that it is competent in accurately assessing whether individuals meet the Qualification Requirements in this subpart for a signal person."

OSHA does not endorse any particular product or company, and does not detail any specifics as to what makes a"third party qualified evaluator" qualified to certify operators. The closest it gets to recommending a specific training product or company is in a letter of interpretation, where it states:

labor-management joint apprenticeship training programs that train and assess signal persons would typically meet the definition for a third-party qualified evaluator.

In the end, it is up to the employers best judgement to determine if the third party evaluator they have selected is an appropriately qualified party.

OSHA Letter of Interpretation on "Qualified Evaluator"

Option 2 - Employers Qualified Evaluator

The employer can designate an employee to train and certify signal persons. They must be a "qualified evaluator, which OSHA defines as

"a person employed by the signal person's employer who has demonstrated that he/she is competent in accurately assessing whether individuals meet the Qualification Requirements in this subpart for a signal person."

Again, OSHA leaves it up to the employer to determine who meets this criteria. In it's letter of interpretation on the subject, OSHA reminds us that the employer is ultimately responsible for the training of their employees, regardless of where the training was completed.

Training For A Signal Person

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