The National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO) has made available a new CCO certification program for service truck crane operators.
Service truck cranes are widely used for propane delivery, mining, and heavy equipment assembly, repair, and service, as well as by local municipalities’ service workers. Although relatively small, these cranes are still engaged in lifting operations covered by OSHA 1926 Subpart CC, which requires operators to be certified or qualified if they are involved with material delivery at construction sites.
The service truck crane industry—including manufacturers, users, dealers, trainers, and labor—requested that NCCCO develop the new program tailored to the unique needs of service truck crane operators. Representatives from these industry sectors, as well as members of NCCCO’s Written Exam and Practical Exam Management Committees, developed the new program over the last nine months.
“I am very pleased with the finished product,” said Tim Worman, product manager for commercial vehicles at Iowa Mold Tooling (IMT), Garner, Iowa, and a leading proponent of the new program who also participated on the Service Truck Crane Work Group. “The written and practical exams are challenging but appropriate for the level of knowledge and skill operators need to safely do their work. Our industry will be better off with this new tool for assessing operators’ abilities.”
A restricted version of the CCO Mobile Crane Operator Telescopic Boom—Fixed Cab (TSS) certification, the new certification has the designation “TSS-STC.” Certification requirements include passing a single written exam and a practical exam similar to the TSS exam but modified to accommodate the smaller service truck cranes as well as the use of remote or pendant controls. Operators already holding CCO TSS certification do not need the TSS-STC certification to operate service truck cranes, but those holding the new TSS-STC certification are restricted to operating service truck cranes only.
"This industry support and subject matter expertise, as well as psychometric guidance from NCCCO and International Assessment Institute, were all key in developing this new program,” said NCCCO manager, Program Development and Administration, Joel Oliva. “This multi-faceted approach ensures that the tests are (and remain) fair, valid, reliable, and legally defensible.” As with its existing programs, NCCCO conducted a professional job task analysis to serve as the foundation for exam development.
Service truck cranes are identified by their telescopic booms, where the base and mast structure is not integral to the stabilizer/outrigger system. Lifting is typically accomplished via a winch (electric or hydraulic) and its functions (rotation, elevation, telescoping) are either powered or manual. These machines tend to have relatively shorter boom lengths (10 to 35 feet) and lower capacities (1 to 7 tons) as compared to other Telescopic Boom—Fixed Cab machines (e.g., boom trucks, carry deck cranes). Additionally, operations are usually conducted by the use of radio remote or pendant controls with the operator standing on the ground following the load.
In addition to IMT, other manufacturers of service truck cranes, as well subject matter experts from the service truck crane user community, participated on the 17-member Service Truck Crane Work Group.
“The new TSS-STC certification program promises to bring the same safety, insurance, and risk reduction benefits that NCCCO’s other certification programs have demonstrably delivered since 1996,” said Oliva. “We anticipate this new program being highly popular among users of these cranes keen to protect their employees and manage the risks inherent in any lifting activity.”
Complete information about the new TSS-STC certification—including candidate handbooks, exam applications, and references—is now available from NCCCO’s website at www.nccco.org/certification/STC.html.