In-house Qualified Signalperson
A signal person is needed when heavy equipment is traveling and the view of the direction of travel is obstructed, if the point of operation (the load travel or area near or at the load placement) is not in full view of the operator, or if there are specific site safety concerns in which the operator or person handling the load determines that it is necessary to use a signal person.
OSHA Signal Person Requirement & Qualifications
1. Communication between the crane operator and the signal person shall be maintained continuously during all crane movements. If at any time communication is disrupted, the operator shall stop all crane movements until communication is
restored and a proper signal is given and understood.
2. If the operator has any concerns regarding the requested movement of the crane or needs to communicate with the signal person, the operator shall stop all crane movement. Crane movement shall not resume until the operator and the signal person agree on the issue at hand has been resolved.
3. If it is desired to give instructions to the operator, other than those provided by the established signal system, the crane movements shall be stopped.
Standard signals to the operator shall be in accordance with the standards prescribed in para. 5-3.3.4 or para. 5-3.3.5. Signals shall be discernible or audible at all times.
No response shall be made unless signals are clearly understood.
Signal Personal Qualifications
Prior to signaling crane operations, all signal-persons shall be tested by a designated person and demonstrate their qualifications in the following areas:
1. Basic understanding of crane operation and limitations
2. Standard hand signals described in para. 5-3.3.4 whenever hand signals are used
3. Standard voice signals described in para. 5-3.3.5 whenever voice signals are used
Standard Hand Signals
Hand signals shall be as shown in Fig. 17 and shall be posted conspicuously at the job site.
Standard Voice Signals
Prior to beginning lifting operations using voice signals, the signals shall be discussed and agreed upon by the person directing lifting operations, the crane operator, and
the appointed signal person.
1. Telephones, radios, or equivalent, if used, shall be tested before lifting operations begin. If the system is battery powered, extra batteries should be available at
the job site.
2. Prior to commencing a lift, the operator and signal person shall contact and identify each other.
3. All directions given to the crane operator by the signal person shall be given from the operator’s direction perspective (e.g., swing right).
4. Each series of voice signals shall contain three elements stated in the following order:
a. Function and direction
b. Distance and/or speed
c. Function stop
5. For lifting operations using voice signals, the person directing lifting operations shall consider the complexity of the lift, the capabilities of the particular crane, the experience and skill of the operator and signal person, and the ability to communicate
the necessary signals before permitting multiple simultaneous crane function signals.
For operations or crane attachments not covered by para. 5-3.3.4. para. 5-3.3.5, or para. 5-3.3.7, additions to or modifications of the standard signal procedures may be required. In all such cases, the required special signals shall be agreed upon in advance by the person directing lifting operations, the crane operator, and the signal person. These special signals should not be in conflict with the standard signals.
Audible Travel Signals
When moving the vehicle, the following signals shall be used:
1. STOP: one short audible signal;
2. GO AHEAD: two short audible signals;
3. BACK UP: three short audible signals.
Practical Examination Outline
The following is an outline of the practical testing procedure, as provided to candidates at the time of testing.
The signal person Practical Examination consists of 16 scenarios. There is no time limit for this examination. Candidates will typically complete the exam in approximately 15 minutes.
Prior to testing, you will watch a short video showing a typical Practical Examination as well as the following instructions:
1. There are two types of scenarios for which you will be asked to demonstrate proper hand or voice signals:
a. Match Scenario: In these scenarios, you observe the crane performing certain functions and give the necessary hand or voice signal(s) that match or matches the function.
b. Candidate-Initiated Scenario: In these scenarios, you give the necessary hand or voice signals to initiate and direct crane movement.
2. All signals must be given in accordance with current ASME B30 standard signals (e.g., the swing signal is: Arm extended, point with finger in direction of swing of boom).
3. Make sure to give only one signal at a time.
4. Give all signals in a clear and precise manner.
5. Maintain the hand signal as long as the function is being performed. For voice signals, remember to maintain constant communication.
6. Remember to give stop signals whenever necessary.
NOTE: A proper stop hand signal is moving the arm back and forth at least one time.
7. At no point in time will a signal be required that would result in an unsafe act. If at any time an unsafe act is being performed, immediately give an appropriate signal to stop the lift operation.
8. In scenarios where multiple signals are required, you must give all signals correctly to receive any points for that scenario (no partial credit).
9. During candidate-initiated scenarios, you will have up to five seconds to give the hand or voice signal.
10. During candidate-initiated scenarios, you will have only one attempt to reach the appropriate stopping area before giving the next function. You are not allowed to stop short and go further or go long and bring it back.
11. At the start of each scenario, the instructions will be shown on the screen and given verbally. You will be asked if you understand the instructions. Take time to make sure you understand the instructions before proceeding.
12. Follow the instructions! If you have any questions, ask the examiner before beginning each scenario.
Candidate ID and Signature
Prior to beginning the examination, the Practical Examiner will ask you for a photo identification, which you must provide in order to test.
The Examiner will ask if you have understood the Candidate Instructions and will answer any questions you may have. You will be asked to sign your application indicating you understand the instructions for the test.