Outline Of Hazardous Occupations For 16 And 17 Year Olds

Higher Standards
  1. If both federal and state law apply, the more restrictive provision controls.
General Exemptions
  1. Apprentice:
    • employed in recognized apprenticeable trade;
    • work is incidental to training;
    • intermittent, short, and under close journeyman supervision; and registered or under written agreement about work standards.
  2. Student­learner:
    • enrolled in authorized cooperative vocational training program; and employed under a written agreement providing that:
      1. work is incidental to training;
      2. work is intermittent, short, and under close supervision;
      3. safety instructions are given by school and employer; and a schedule of organized and progressive work is prepared.
Hazardous Occupations To Which The General Exemptions Apply
  1. Power­Driven Woodworking Machines
  2. Power­Driven Metal Forming, Punching, and Shearing Machines
  3. Power­Driven Meat Processing Machines (Slaughtering, Meat Packing, Rendering)
  4. Power­Driven Paper­Products Machines
  5. Circular Saws, Band Saws, and Guillotine Shears
  6. Roofing Operations
  7. Excavation Operations
Hazardous Occupations to Which the General Exemptions Do NOT Apply
  1. Manufacturing or Storing Explosives
  2. Motor Vehicle Operator or Outside Helper
  3. Coal Mining
  4. Logging, Sawmill, Lath Mill, Shingle Mill, or Cooperage Stock Mill
  5. Radioactive Substances or Ionizing Radiations
  6. Power­Driven Hoisting Apparatus
  7. Mining Other Than Coal
  8. Bakery Machines
  9. Manufacturing of Brick, Tile, and Kindred Products
  10. Wrecking, Demolition, and Shipbreaking
There have been some important changes to the Child Labor Laws affecting Hazardous Occupation Orders No. 2 and No. 12. The Texas Child Labor Laws restrict the types of occupations that minors under 18 years of age may perform. One such provision, Hazardous Occupation Order No.2 (HO 2), prohibits minors under 18 years of age from driving motor vehicles on public roadways unless conditions for certain exemptions are met. Another provision, Hazardous Occupation Order No. 12 (HO 12), prohibits minors under 18 years of age from operating, loading or unloading certain power­driven paper processing machines, including scrap paper balers and paper box compactors. Two amendments to the Fair Labor Standards Act were adopted by the Texas Workforce Commission by rule effective April 22, 1999. One amendment modified HO No. 2, setting the minimum age of 17 for any on­the­job driving on public roadways. Another amendment modified HO No. 12, to permit minors 16 years of age or older to load, but not operate or unload, certain scrap paper balers and paper box compactors. Changes to Hazardous Order No. 2: No employee under 17 years of age may drive on public roadways as part of their employment. Seventeen­year­olds may drive on public roadways as part of their employment, but ONLY if all the following requirements are met:
  • The driving is limited to daylight hours;
  • The 17­year­old holds a State license valid for the type of driving involved in the job performed;
  • The 17­year­old has successfully completed a State approved driver education course and has no record of any moving violation at the time of hire;
  • The automobile or truck is equipped with a seat belt for the driver and any passengers and the employer has instructed the youth that the seat belts must be used when driving;
  • The automobile or truck does not exceed 6,000 lbs. gross vehicle weight;
The driving may not involve:
  • Towing vehicles;
  • Route deliveries or sales;
  • Transportation for hire of property, goods, or passengers;
  • Urgent, time sensitive deliveries, such as pizza or floral delivery;
  • Transporting more than three passengers, including employees of the employer;
  • Driving beyond a 30­mile radius from the youth's place of employment;
  • More than two trips away from the primary place of employment in any single day to deliver the employer's goods to a customer (other than urgent, time­sensitive deliveries which are prohibited);
  • More than two trips away from the primary place of employment in any single day to transport passengers, other than employees of the employer; and,
  • Such driving is only occasional and incidental to the 17­year­old's employment. This means that the youth may spend no more than 1/3 of the work time in any workday and no more than 20% of the work time in any workweek driving.
The above requirements apply whether the youth is driving a personal or employer­owned vehicle. Employers can guard against violations of the new requirements by securing documentation from 17­year­old employees who drive as part of their job. Such documentation would include evidence of the employee's age, completion of a driver education course, clean driving record and appropriate State driver's license. Changes to Hazardous Order No. 12: Minors 16 years of age or older are permitted to load ­ but not operate or unload ­ certain scrap paper balers and paper box compactors, but ONLY if all the following requirements are met:
  • The employer must ensure that the equipment meets, and continues to meet, the American National Standards Institute's Standard ANSI Z245.5­1990 for scrap paper balers or Standard ANSI Z245.2­1992 for paper box compactors (ANSI).
  • Prior to permitting minors under age 18 to load materials into balers and compactors, the employer must provide a notice and post a notice on each piece of equipment that:
    1. The equipment meets the appropriate ANSI standard named above, and
    2. 16­ and 17­year olds may only load the equipment, and
    3. any employee under age 18 may not operate or unload such equipment.
  • The equipment must include an on­off switch incorporating a key­lock or other system, and the control of the system must be maintained in the custody of employees who are 18 years of age or older.
  • The on­off switch of the equipment must be maintained in an off position when the equipment is not in operation.
It is the responsibility of the employer to make the initial determination that the equipment to be loaded by 16­ and 17­year olds meet the appropriate ANSI standards. It is also the employer's responsibility to provide the notice and post it on each piece of equipment which is loaded by 16­ or 17­year old workers. The amendment also requires that all employers subject to the FLSA submit a report to the Secretary of Labor when an injury that requires medical treatment (other than first aid) or death to an employee under 18 years of age occurs as a result of contact with a scrap paper baler or a paper box compactor during the loading, operation, or unloading of the equipment. This reporting obligation, which remains in effect for two years after the enactment of the amendment, requires that such report be submitted within ten days of the occurrence of the injury or death. The Child Labor Law Unit of the Texas Workforce Commission is developing guidelines and information to facilitate compliance. The Federal government also sets standards for child labor and teen drivers. When both Federal and State laws apply, the law setting the more stringent standard must be observed. For information regarding the Federal child labor standards, contact your local office of the Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division. For more information regarding HO No. 2 or HO No. 12 or any other child labor matter, please contact the Child Labor Law Unit of the Texas Workforce Commission.

The information on this page is meant to provide a general overview of the law. The laws in your state and/or city may deviate significantly from those described here. If you have specific questions related to your situation you should speak with a local attorney.

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