Why should you become a Certified Rigger Level I?

In accordance with OSHA Regulation (1926.1404(r)(1) and 1926.1425(c)) employers are required to use a qualified rigger during hoisting activities for assembly and disassembly work, and whenever workers are within the fall zone and hooking, unhooking, or guiding a load, or doling the initial connection of a load to a component or structure.  According to OSHA, a qualified rigger is a person that possesses a recognized degree, certificate, or professional standing, or has extensive knowledge, training, and experience, and can successfully demonstrate the ability to solve problems related to rigging loads.

Why go through becoming Certified vs. Qualified?  Although OSHA Regulations only require “qualification” at this point, some jurisdictions and employers require riggers to be certified.  By becoming a National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO) Certified Rigger you demonstrate the ability to pass a written and practical exam developed by a nationally recognized and internationally certified program.  Many employers, federal and state agencies, labor unions, industry organizations, and insurance firms have come to recognize or require NCCCO certification.

Becoming a Certified Rigger makes you more marketable and often means a higher pay rate.  As an employer, having properly trained and Certified Riggers makes your job site safer for everyone working around moving loads.

What does USTC offer?

USTC can provide OSHA compliant training at your facility in preparation for NCCCO Certified Rigger Level I testing, in accordance with OSHA Regulation 1926.1404(r)(1) and 1926.1425(c)).   USTC will provide both classroom and practical training on the following topics:

  • How to determine hoisting and rigging hazards
  • Elements that can affect hoisting safety
  • Factors that reduce capacity
  • Determining Load Weights
  • OSHA Regulation 29 CFR 1910.184 Slings
  • OSHA Regulation 29 CFR 1926.251 Rigging equipment for material handling
  • ASME B30 as it pertains to lifting and material handling related to lifting equipment
  • Use and inspection of different types of slings
  • Basic hitch connections, there advantages and disadvantages
  • Calculating sling loading based on rigging configuration
  • Basic understanding of crane operation and what to be aware of during a lift
  • Signal operations
  • Use and inspection criteria for different types of rigging hardware
  • Basic rigging knots
  • And more

Once training is complete, a Certified Rigger Level I can perform simple, repetitive rigging tasks when the load weight, center of gravity, the rigging, and rigging configuration are provided or known by the rigger through experience or on-the-job training prior to the rigging activities. Specifically, Level I Riggers should be able to demonstrate or have knowledge of how to:

  • Inspect rigging before use
  • Identify and attach rigging with basic knowledge of hitch configurations, capacities, and basic knots
  • Recognize associated hazards
  • Signal operations

A typical training course is completed in 1 to 3 working days.  USTC will work with you to address any site-specific training needs to ensure employees have the best job specific training possible.  Actual training schedule dependent on the number of students and the extent of site-specific training.  Once course work is completed students will take a written and practical exam through the National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO).


Eligibility Requirements for NCCCO Certified Rigger Level I Certification include the following:

  • Be at least 18 years of age
  • Meet Medical Requirements
  • Comply with NCCCO’s Substance Abuse Policy
  • Pass Written Examinations
  • Pass Practical Examination
  • Comply with NCCCO code of ethics

Why is proper training critical for operators and those working around cranes?

“From 2011 to 2015, the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) reported 220 total crane-related deaths, an average of 44 per year over this 5-year period. Just over half of all fatal crane injuries involved the worker being struck by an object or equipment. More than three-fifths of these cases (69 of 112) involved the worker being struck by a falling object or equipment; in 60 of these cases, the worker was struck by an object falling from a crane. Transportation incidents and falls to a lower level each made up 14 percent of the remaining fatal injuries involving cranes.”

-United States Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics

Having properly trained and Certified Riggers on the job site is critical not only to protect the load, but also to protect those working around it.  Don’t become one of the statistics, work with USTC to obtain proper safety training for yourself and/or your employees.

Contact USTC today to schedule your Certified Rigger Level I Training!