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WAC 296-54-601

No agency filings affecting this section since 2003

Signals and signal systems.

(1) Standard hand or whistle signals as described in this chapter must be used for the movement of rigging, logs, or equipment when using a high lead, slackline, or cable skidder system for yarding. For hand signal illustrations, see appendix 1.
(2) Voice communication may be used to move rigging and control movement of logs, provided a standard audible whistle signal is sounded before any line is moved.
Note:
Subsections (1) and (2) of this section do not apply to grapple or other special yarding systems where employees are not exposed to the movement of logs or rigging.
(3) Voice communications may be used for grapple yarding under the following conditions:
(a) Voice communications by use of radio frequencies may be used to transmit instructions and directions to the yarder operator when using a grapple type logging system, if no employee is in a hazardous area near live rigging.
(b) Voice communication may be used to instruct the yarder operator when picking up an occasional log with the use of a choker on a grapple system, if the grapple is on the ground before the setting of the choker and no lines are moved by the operator until the person setting the choker has returned to a safe location away from any running lines. When a number of logs must be yarded by using chokers instead of the grapple, the requirements for high lead logging apply.
(4) Voice communication on the same radio frequencies used to transmit skyline, high-lead, slackline or skidder whistle signals (154.57 and 154.60 MHz channels), must be limited to reporting injuries, fire, and emergency situations where special tools or precautions are needed to prevent or alleviate a hazardous situation. In addition:
(a) The rigging crew must call the yarder engineer by name to ensure that proper contact is established;
(b) The yarder engineer must acknowledge the call with a whistle "stop" signal before the caller starts transmitting the voice message;
(c) Voice transmission must be kept as brief and to the point as possible; and
(d) After receiving the voice message, the yarder engineer must again acknowledge with a whistle "stop" signal that the message has been received and is clearly understood.
(5) If a standard signal is not listed for an unusual or new situation, a hand or whistle signal other than any listed for the type of yarding being done may be used for the specific situation only. Any special signals developed must be understood by all persons working in the area who may be affected by their use.
(6) A copy of the standard hand and whistle signals must be posted on the yarder and at places where crews congregate. For tractor logging operations, hand signals must be posted at places frequented by the crew members such as in crew buses, etc.
(7) Only one person in any crew shall give signals at the point where chokers are being set. Any person is authorized to give a stop signal when someone is in danger or another emergency condition is apparent.
(8) Hand signals are permitted only when the signal person is in plain sight of the machine operator and when visibility allows signals to be seen. Hand signals may be used at any time as an emergency stop signal.
(9) Throwing of any type of material or relying on engine noise, such as from a chain saw, as a signal is prohibited.
(10) All persons must be in the clear before any signal is given to move the rigging, logs, or turns. Rigging, logs, or turns must not be moved until after the proper signals have been given.
(11) Machine operators must not move any line unless the signal received is clear and distinct. If in doubt, the operator must repeat the signal as understood and wait for confirmation.
(12) A horn or whistle that is automatically activated by the radio or electric signaling system must be used on each yarder used for skyline, high lead, skidder or slackline system of yarding, except where hand signals or voice communication as described in subsection (2) of this section is permitted. The horn or whistle must emit a sound that is clearly audible to all persons in the affected area and must be sounded before any line is moved. Such a horn or whistle is also required on combination yarding and loading machines and tree pullers. Audible signals are not necessary on grapple or other yarding systems where persons are not exposed to the movement of logs or rigging.
(13) All radio-controlled motorized carriages and skycars must have a warning horn which must be sounded before any lines or loads are moved or an audible whistle must be sounded from the yarder.
(14) Each unit of the signal or control system in use must be tested daily before logging operations begin. Audible signals used for test purposes must not include signals used for the movement of lines or materials.
(15) Citizen band (CB) radios must not be used to activate any signal, machine, or process, either automatically or by voice. CB radios may be used for communication between sides, vehicles, work units, or for emergency situations.
(16) When audible whistle signals are being used simultaneously by yarding and loading machines at a landing, signal whistle or horn tones used in connection with machine movements must be so differentiated as to distinctively identify any intended work movement of either machine.
(17) When the normal crew configuration consists of two or more persons at the point where chokers are being set, they must each carry an operable transmitter on their person. Only one transmitter is required if:
(a) The signal person has no other duties and remains in an area where there are no hazards created by the moving rigging or logs; or
(b) The rigging crew is comprised of only one employee.
(18) The use of a jerk wire whistle system for any type of yarding operation is prohibited.
[Statutory Authority: RCW 49.17.010, [49.17].040 and [49.17].050. WSR 99-17-117, § 296-54-601, filed 8/18/99, effective 12/1/99. Statutory Authority: RCW 49.17.040, [49.17].050 and [49.17].060. WSR 96-22-013, § 296-54-601, filed 10/28/96, effective 1/1/97. Statutory Authority: RCW 49.17.040, 49.17.050, 49.17.240, chapters 43.22 and 42.30 RCW. WSR 80-11-057 (Order 80-15), § 296-54-601, filed 8/20/80. Statutory Authority: RCW 49.17.040, 49.17.150 and 49.17.240. WSR 79-10-081 (Order 79-14), § 296-54-601, filed 9/21/79.]