How often are ANSI standards updated?

ANSI standards are revised more regularly than OSHA’s regulations due to the fact that revising regulations can be incredibly cumbersome and time consuming in comparison to revising voluntary standards. In fact, under the ANSI Essential Requirements, these standards must go through a reevaluation process to keep their validity with an accredited standard developer. This kind of development is called continuous maintenance and is kept up by the American National Standard (ANS). The purpose of this kind of maintenance is to make sure that those standards are offering the best and most current advice on the subject that they concern. Industry and processes change constantly which means that the standards involved need to accurately show those adaptations.

ANSI-accredited standard developers are required to have records detailing their own compliance with the standards that they themselves have put forth. These standard developers are occasionally audited by the ANSI Executive Standards Council (ExSC) regarding those standards which are then evaluated by the ANSI Board of Standards Review (BSR) for approval (if the standard is new), withdrawal, revision, or reaffirmation. The ending status of the standard is decided by the BSR from utilizing the criteria listed in 4.2.1.1 of the ANSI Essential Requirements documents.

ANSI has a wonderful transparent take on their activity, what standards are being reviewed for changes, and new standards that have been proposed. In fact, there is an option for the public to weigh in on these new proposed and potential revisions on standards put forth by their accredited standard developers. Everyone that is directly influenced by the proposal under revision is able to participate. These proposals can be found in the institute’s key public review vehicle titled standards action.

 

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