Quick Guide to OSHA's Fall Protection Standard Update (2017)

May 31, 2017

The 2017 update to the OSHA standard for fall protection compliance (1910 Subpart D) implements terminology that didn't exist in the previous version of the standard. For those of you who knew the pre-2017 standard by heart, here's a quick-reference breakdown of the current standard terminology compared to what was used before 2017.

The most signifcant change with the 2017 update is that the generic term for anything that is a mobile work platform is now called a "mobile ladder stand platform" (even if it has a staircase instead of a ladder). OSHA has also redefined standard railing as a "guardrail system," and portable metal ladders are now "mobile ladder stands."

Be sure to check out the employer deadlines at the bottom of this post and read more about the key five OSHA standards for industrial work platforms. 


Old Terms New Terms
Manually Propelled Ladder Stands Mobile Ladder Stand Platform
Standard Railing Guardrail System
Portable Metal Ladder Mobile Ladder Stand


OSHA STANDARD 1910.21-30

Old §1910 Subpart D Standard Number New §1910 Subpart D
Scope and Definitions 1910.21 Scope and Definitions
General Requirements 1910.22 General Requirements
Guarding Floor and
Wall Openings and Holes

Fixed Industrial Stairs 1910.24 Step Bolts and Manhole Steps
Portable Wood Ladders 1910.25 Stairways
Portable Metal Ladders 1910.26 Dockboards
Fixed Ladders 1910.27 Scaffolds and Rope Descent Systems
Safety Requirements for Scaffolding 1910.28 Duty to Have Fall Protection and Falling Object Protection
Manually Propelled Mobile Ladder Stands and Scaffolds 1910.29 Fall protection Systems and Falling Object Protection - Criteria and Practices
Other Working Surfaces 1910.30 Training Requirements 


  • May 17, 2017 | Training workers on fall and equipment hazards
  • November 19, 2018 | Installation of fall protection (personal fall arrest systems, ladder safety systems, cages, wells) on existing fixed ladders (over 24 feet) that do not have any fall protection
  • November 19, 2018 | Installation of personal fall arrest systems or ladder safety system on all new fixed ladders (over 24 feet) and replacement ladders/ladder sections
  • November 18, 2036 | Installation of ladder safety systems or personal fall arrest systems on all fixed ladders (over 24 feet

Do you wish to learn more about OSHA-compliant work platforms by Spika? Contact us! 

Want a quick cheat-sheet for OSHA compliance? Download this free checklist!

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