WSR 08-23-087

PREPROPOSAL STATEMENT OF INQUIRY

DEPARTMENT OF

LABOR AND INDUSTRIES

[ Filed November 18, 2008, 3:02 p.m. ]

Subject of Possible Rule Making: Chapter 296-45 WAC, Safety standards for electrical workers.

Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: RCW 49.17.010, 49.17.040, 49.17.050, 49.17.060.

Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: The electric utility safety advisory committee (EUSAC) has come to the department with concerns about the protection of nonqualified workers while in energized electric utility substations. EUSAC recommends that the department adopt language to help the industry ensure the safety of these workers.

The new language establishes a "safety watch," which entails direct supervision of a qualified person when a nonqualified employee approaches exposed energized electrical equipment in substations or switch yards.

Other Federal and State Agencies that Regulate this Subject and the Process Coordinating the Rule with These Agencies: No other state or federal agencies (other than OSHA) are known to regulate worker safety and health for this subject.

Process for Developing New Rule: Parties interested in the formulation of these rules for proposal may contact the individual listed below. The public may also participate by commenting after amendments are proposed by providing written comments or giving oral testimony during the public hearing process.

Interested parties can participate in the decision to adopt the new rule and formulation of the proposed rule before publication by contacting Kimberly Johnson, Administrative Regulations Analyst, Department of Labor and Industries, Division of Occupational Safety and Health, P.O. Box 44620, Olympia, WA 98504-4620, phone (360) 902-5008, fax (360) 902-5619, e-mail rhok235@lni.wa.gov.

November 18, 2008

Judy Schurke

Director

Washington State Code Reviser's Office