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Operating Engineers Regional Training Program - Inland Empire
Apprenticeship & Training Local Union 302

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Crane Operator Certification

WA State Crane Rule

Updated On: Sep 28, 2010 (15:16:00)


Washington State to Require Certification of Cranes and Operators

April 2007 - While the revised federal requirement for crane operators continues its administrative journey through the corridors of federal OSHA, attempts in the “other” Washington to implement a similar law came to fruition in early April. 

Washington state Governor, Chris Gregoire, signed into law HB 2171 on April 10, 2007 and, in doing so, made her state the fifteenth in the nation to require crane operators to be certified. 

Effective January 1, 2010, no employer or contractor may permit a crane operator engaged in construction work to operate a crane unless the crane operator is qualified.  The new law also requires cranes to be certified at least annually by a certified crane inspector.

Washington’s Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) has been given the responsibility of establishing the requirements for a qualified crane operator, but they must include, at a minimum, a provision for crane operators to have a valid certificate for the type of crane they operate.  The certificate must be issued by a crane operator testing organization that is accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting agency.  The National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO) has been accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA) since 1998.

The new law also requires the accredited certifying organization to administer written and practical examinations and have procedures for the recertification of crane operators at least every five years.  In addition to being certified, the new law also requires crane operators to have up to 2,000 hours of documented crane experience that meets experience levels to be established by L&I.  There are provisions for an apprentice or trainee operator to operate cranes under the “direct and continuous supervision” of a qualified crane operator.  They must also pass a substance abuse test conducted by a recognized laboratory service.  

The new law covers mobile, tower and overhead (gantry) cranes when used in construction work.  Knuckleboom cranes, piledrivers and locomotive cranes are also included.  Specifically excluded are electrical line trucks, mechanics’ trucks, hydraulic jacking systems and aerial lifts.

The enactment of the law, whose passage is one of the swiftest of its kind ever, comes less than five months after the fatal Bellevue, WA tower crane collapse in which a Microsoft lawyer was killed in his condominium, and three buildings were damaged.  The investigation into that accident, which sparked a state-wide inspection of tower cranes and resulted in a number being shut down, is continuing.    *Article located at


Jan 13, 2011

Jan 13, 2011

Jan 13, 2011
Download: Press Release OECP CCO CIC 6-19-14.pdf , OECP RECERT COC.pdf , OECP INITIAL COC.pdf , OECP Prerequisites.pdf , CandidateManual.pdf

Jan 13, 2011
This is a closed testing facility....You must be a Local 302 Operating Engineer on the "A List" or an Operating Engineer from another Local on their "A List" and we will try to fit you in as space is available. If you would like to schedule a practical test please call the office at least 4 weeks before you want to test and we will do our best to get you tested. You can call us at 509-235-9393
Jan 13, 2011
Certification Time Frames Updated On: Nov 05, 2008 (11:58:00) Candidates must pass a written exam and a practical exam in the category they wish to be certified in.

Page Last Updated: Sep 02, 2014 (15:17:00)
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