•   USCG oversees and regulates all inspected vessels and worker health and safety on oil and gas platforms, but the regulations that are promulgated for this setting may be unique to oil and gas operations.

•   As mentioned earlier, OSHA or approved state regulations cover all workplace health and safety activities unless preempted by another federal agency. OSHA regulations are enforced for land-based wind farm operations and would be applied to wind farms in state waters. BOEM could adapt or adopt these regulations for offshore wind farms on the OCS, but they may be inadequate for BOEM’s needs or for the unique marine environment.

•   Organizations and associations, both domestic and international, have developed standards and guidelines for worker health and safety on offshore wind farms. They are in use by other countries and companies, but BOEM would need to adapt them to serve as regulations in the United States.


In an effort to meet its mandate for enhancing safety regulations, the former Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation, and Enforcement (BOEMRE) received the results of a study from the Marine Board of the National Research Council in April 2011 that focused on the structural safety of offshore wind turbines (TRB 2011). In August 2011, BOEMRE approached the Marine Board again to request an assessment of BOEMRE’s approach for regulating the health and safety of wind farm workers on the OCS. The charge of the committee is shown in Box 1-2.

As discussed with the sponsor at the first meeting, the study’s objective includes the examination of rules for worker health and safety on the OCS during each phase of wind farm development, from construction to decommissioning. In addition, the committee believed that it should consider the role of design and human factors engineering (HFE) in mitigating hazards, and this matter was accepted as part of the committee’s charge after its first meeting. The committee recognizes that aspects of offshore wind farm operations occurring in state waters and the Great Lakes, although relevant to those on the OCS, are outside the scope of its charge and not within the enforcement jurisdiction of DOI. However,

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