Regulators asked for input, and that's exactly what they got.

A significant number of public responses to a proposed federal regulation on cranes and derricks, estimated at 150 so far, have convinced the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration to push back the comment period, which was to expire on Dec. 8. The public now has until Jan. 22, 2009.

The move is a reaction to the "significant" number of responses, many of which asked for more time to digest the lengthy rule, says the agency.

A copy of the roughly 240-page proposed rule, which ran in the Oct. 9 Federal Register, can be found here.

Many respondents have asked for extensions ranging from 60-90 days, regulators say. "OSHA believes that a 45-day extension will be sufficient," the agency said in yesterday's Federal Register. A hearing will be scheduled “shortly,” it adds.

Comments can be submitted online. The rule�s docket number is “OSHA�2007�0066.”