The White House ain't up to code

Saw there was a medical emergency and rescue at the White House today, thought it odd and found the video below. Those familiar with OSHA, take a look at this:

I have questions. Like, how the hell is there an unprotected, unmarked 10 foot drop at the White House? I know federal workers get certain exemptions, and the White House is a national park (right? I think) But holy hell, that’s a 10 foot unmarked/protected fall. Its 2018. What am I missing here?

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That is a well known drop. Anybody who is authorized to be on the general White House grounds should be well aware of it and generally there should not be people wandering around on the surface level in that area. The reason behind no rail is aesthetic, as they don’t want to call visitor’s (outside the White House fence) eyes to the depression.

That is the first injury of that type I have heard of, so no reason to overreact and install a rail.

I wish I could tell OSHA that.

I can’t argue with anything your saying from a common sense standpoint.

God help me at all for playing OSHA inspector but, that’s an unprotected 10 foot fall on an active jobsite.

OSHA will have been there by now or will be tomorrow. If this were at a business in my downtown it would have city code guys all over it too.

I’m assuming there are exemptions for that being a historic federal building but even then, with workers around that thing either needs barricades or guardrails or some sort of fall safety system.

I’m guessing people don’t want to don a harness and lanyard to traverse the area, so here comes your new guardrail.


“Unprotected sides and edges.” Each employee on a walking/working surface (horizontal and vertical surface) with an unprotected side or edge which is 6 feet (1.8 m) or more above a lower level shall be protected from falling by the use of guardrail systems, safety net systems, or personal fall arrest systems.

The White House is almost certainly exempt from the general codes.

The electrical and other systems of the White House are a nightmare. Technology has advanced by leaps and bounds since the Truman restoration.

While I don’t think that the White House needs to be totally gutted as it was during Truman’s term, I think portions of it, particularly the West Wing, may need to be overhauled, with some areas stripped down to the studs to allow for a total redo of the electrical and other systems. Not to the point where the President and his family would have to leave the White House, as Truman did.

Hmm. Yet federal employees or contractors aren’t exempt from OSHA.

So I guess this guy’s boss gets the fine for not setting up a temporary barricade in an area his workers were in. Everyone else gets sued.

also, the Eisenhower building gets a new shiny guard rail to match the fence.