Small Business Administration (SBA) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) are actively seeking small entity representatives to serve on a panel to review and comment on the scope of OSHA’s contemplated rulemaking proceeding concerning construction and maintenance activities on telecommunications structures. OSHA’s intention to propose new standards stems from concerns of employee safety risks in construction and maintenance activities on telecommunications structures.

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In 2015, due to a high number of tower worker fatalities, OSHA issued a Request for Information (RIF) seeking comments from wireless carriers and all parties involved in the contracting chain on regulatory and non-regulatory actions that would address the hazards associated with work on telecommunication structures. At this time, OSHA stated that because such activities are not adequately covered by current OSHA standards, it intends to take action to address the hazards and risks.

OSHA provided notice to SBA of its intention to convene a Small Business Advocacy Review (SBAR) panel in the next sixty (60) days, which it is required to do when its proposal is expected to have a significant impact on a substantial number of small entities. SBA now seeks small entity representatives for the panel. This is the first step in the process. Participation with this panel offers an opportunity to provide concerns and recommendations prior to the initiation of a rulemaking proceeding, or the publication of any proposed new rules governing construction/maintenance activities on telecommunications structures.