Expiration date: 5/5/2023
TO: All INTERESTED AGENCIES, PUBLIC GROUPS, AND CITIZENS
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Detroit District, is proposing work at St. Marys Falls Canal (Soo Locks, Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan). The work includes the following: adding additional fall protection at the MacArthur and Poe Lock chambers, installing bridge anchoring points at the MacArthur and Poe Lock chambers, and MacArthur Lock handrails replacement (Enclosure 1). This project constitutes an “undertaking” under Section 106 of the NHPA. This notice is provided pursuant to Section 800.6 of 36 C.F.R Part 800, Protection of Historic Properties, and Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA), 54 U.S.C. § 300101 et seq. A copy of this public notice can be provided upon request or can be reviewed online at http://www.lre.usace.army.mil/ by clicking on the link to “Other Public Notice” in the bottom left corner.
Fall Protection for Soo and MacArthur Locks Chambers: During the navigation season, for any maintenance or inspection activities that require approaching lock chamber walls, the USACE personnel are required to wear safety harnesses, secured to mooring points to reduce the fall risk, per an Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requirement (OHSA 1917.112(b)(1) which requires a guard rail at least 43 inches in height near an opening. Line handlers cannot use safety harnesses during mooring activities, as it poses a risk of entanglement with the mooring lines. During the winter maintenance season, the USACE utilizes temporary plastic barriers around dewatered locks to reduce the fall risk.
The USACE has determined that additional safety measures, such as guard rails or concrete walls, are needed along the MacArthur and Poe Locks to meet current OSHA standards.
Additional safety measures would help reduce the risk of a person falling into an empty or filled lock chamber, or a person being crushed between a vessel and a lock wall (the railing/wall will also reduce or eliminate the risk of drowning).