WATERTOWN, S.D.—The American National Standards Institute and American Society of Safety Engineers have finalized the A10.48-2016 Standard on tower safety, the National Association of Tower Erectors announced in a press release. Officially titled A10.48 Standard – Criteria for Safety Practices with the Construction, Demolition, Modification and Maintenance of Communication Structures, the ANSI/ASSE standard encompasses the entire tower, construction, service and maintenance industry, and is being described as "the most comprehensive tower construction and use standard ever developed," according to NATE Executive Director Todd Schlekeway.
The new standard establishes minimum criteria for safe work practices and training for personnel performing work on communication structures, including antenna and antenna supporting structures. Other areas of construction addressed in the standard include pre-job planning; job site conditions; fall protection; radio frequency/electromagnetic energy; base mounted hoists used for overhead material lifting and personnel lifting; personnel lifting accessories and process; rigging; gin poles and other lifting devices; structural construction loading considerations; training program; capstan hoist; demolition; and helicopters used for lifting loads.
Kathy Stieler of Electronics Research Inc. was a member of NATE’s A10.48 subcommittee that worked with ASNI/ASSE to develop the new standard. “The A10.48 Standard will provide the ultimate road map for companies and workers to adhere to in order to raise the bar on safety and quality in the industry,” she said. “This transformative standard will fill a huge void that currently exists right now in the industry.”
Schlekeway also believes that this new standard is coming out at just the right time. "The timing of the standard's completion is significant as well as it comes prior to the Broadcast Repacking work that will be done in the aftermath of the 600 MHz Incentive Auction," he said. "The timing of this new standard is also great as it will be a go to resource for contractors and subcontractors involved in the FirstNet Public Safety Broadband Network deployment in the near future."
Representatives from NATE, ASSE and the Telecommunications Industry Association will be providing information and educational opportunities on the A10.48 standard in the coming weeks. NATE says it will also provide an update on how to purchase the standard when it is officially published.