|2004 OSHSPA Report > State incentives: promoting voluntary compliance|
|State incentives: promoting voluntary compliance|
Voluntary protection programs
Alaska devotes substantial resources to its VPP and SHARP programs. As a result, Alaska exceeded its goals by increasing the number of VPP sites by 20 percent. Alaska currently maintains six VPP sites and 12 SHARP sites.
Alaska has established four partnerships:
The annual Alaska Governor’s Safety Conference brings hundreds of employers, employees, safety professionals and vendors – from all over the state – together to discuss new and existing safety topics. The structure of the conference is flexible enough to allow targeting training to current safety and health issues. The Alaska Consultation and Training Section provides training courses about construction and general industry standards to participants at the conference.
The Consultation Section of Arizona Division of Occupational Safety and Health (ADOSH) is responsible for promoting and operating Arizona’s Voluntary Protection Program (VPP). In 2003, the Consultation Section did an outstanding job at promoting the virtues of VPP. Because of their outstanding outreach and promotion of the program, ADOSH is now seeing a significant increase in employer interest and application assistance requests. ADOSH continues to interact with and promote the Voluntary Protection Participants Program Association (VPPPA). ADOSH participated in regional and national meetings to promote safer workplaces throughout the nation.
Connecticut currently has five employers that have been awarded SHARP certifications. Connecticut also recently hosted the Second Annual Region 1 SHARP Luncheon. Ten companies throughout the New England region were honored. Approximately 80 individuals attended the event. Marthe B. Kent, Region 1 regional administrator, delivered the keynote address.
Eight new employers achieved VPP status in Indiana in 2004.
In fiscal-year 2004, Kentucky awarded its first two SHARP certifications. Kentucky also raised one new VPP flag in fiscal-year 2004.
Maryland approved the recertification process of the Northrop Grumman site for an additional five years. There are two additional sites that should successfully complete the VPP process during fiscal-year 2005.
Michigan awarded its first Star flag in 1999. In fiscal-year 2004, eight Star and two Rising Star awards were celebrated. As of Sept. 30, 2004, Michigan OSHA (MIOSHA) has awarded Star status to 16 sites and Rising Star status to seven sites. Two companies have achieved SHARP recognition.
By fiscal-year 2004, Minnesota had awarded 13 MNSHARP and 13 MNSTAR sites.
Nevada OSHA is proud to currently have three VPP Star sites in the program. The Nevada OSHA VPP Team continues to work with many interested employers throughout the state, with program growth anticipated to double during the next fiscal-year.
Nevada’s Safety Consultation and Training Section (SCATS) currently has 15 businesses in SHARP status, two in deferral status and another five businesses finalizing entry into deferral status. The state of Nevada also recognizes exceptional employers through the Safe partner of the quarter recognition program. The program recognizes employers that participate in a comprehensive survey and enhance employee safety awareness through attendance at a SCATS 10- or 30-hour formal training program. Safe partner of the quarter not only recognizes businesses, it also provides state-level recognition to associations that request SCATS participation in their meetings or seminars. SCATS currently has four Safe partner of the quarter recipients.
North Carolina initiated the Carolina Star program in 1993. There are currently 76 Carolina Star sites. Included under the Carolina Star umbrella is the Building Star program that recognizes construction worksites that have quality safety and health programs. The newest Carolina Star program is the Public Sector Star, which recognizes state agencies and local governments. This new program was launched in April 2004. To assist in the expansion of all of the state’s recognition programs with limited resources available, North Carolina has developed the Independent Star Assessors (ISA) Program. This joint venture allows safety and health professionals in the private sector to assist in conducting evaluations of North Carolina’s top employers applying for Star status. ISA has been approved as a pilot project by federal OSHA. The state also has 27 active SHARP sites.
Oregon OSHA’s SHARP program has been so successful that strategic-plan targets have been met and increased several times during the life of the plan. As of Sept. 30, 2004, 86 Oregon companies had achieved SHARP. The interest shown by Oregon employers in SHARP has exceeded all expectations.
This high level of participation has prompted OR-OSHA to re-examine the goals for the program and the agency’s role, particularly with those employers that have successfully implemented an effective safety and health management program. It has been Oregon’s experience that companies that have participated in SHARP for three or more years have made the changes necessary to support a culture of continual improvement in safety and health. These employers tend to have an in-depth understanding of the value of an effective safety and health program and have incorporated this value into their culture. Given the level of sophistication in implementing a safety and health program, the benefits these long-time SHARP employers receive from OR-OSHA monitoring is minimal. As such, Oregon has implemented a pilot program to "graduate" employers from SHARP. This "graduation" will allow OR-OSHA to focus its resources on companies that are in need of more basic safety and health assistance.
The Puerto Rico Voluntary Protection Programs have approved nine VPP sites in the electronics, pharmaceutical and petrochemical industries. On Feb. 27, 2004, the program approved the first agricultural industry, Monsanto Caribe, LLC to the Guanín Award, equivalent to the Star Award, under the VPP Program.
The first company participation of the SHARP Cooperative Program is the Clendo Reference Laboratory. The company’s participation was approved June 24, 2004.
South Carolina has now approved 48 Star sites and two SHARP sites. There continues to be increased interest and activity in these programs. One goal is to add two SHARP sites a year. Seven companies have been recognized as Super Star sites; these sites are current Palmetto Star sites that have successfully completed one three-year re-evaluation and continue to reduce TCIR and DART rates. The sites must also complete a thorough self-evaluation to assess improvements in the its safety and health system. A Palmetto Star "Best Practices" workshop was conducted for current Palmetto Star sites to discuss best practices that have been implemented at their facilities. This provided a great opportunity for current VPP sites to learn from each other and help make their workplaces as safe as possible. A workshop is planned for the last quarter of the year for companies interested in becoming Palmetto Star sites.
Tennessee OSHA began its VPP efforts in 1991, with the Volunteer Star Program. Interest in the program continues to grow as current members network with their peers and communicate the value of the Volunteer Star Program. The Volunteer Star Program currently has 18 members, including two sites added and three sites recertified during 2004. The Tennessee OSHA Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP) has nine participants. Two new employers were added to this program and seven were recertified during 2004.
Voluntary programs continue to grow in Utah. During 2004, two companies were approved for VPP (one Star and one Merit) and one company was re-approved for Star. Utah actively participates in the VPPPA, VPP initiatives led by federal OSHA and Region VIII VPP activities.
Utah’s VPP manager wrote an article for the VPPPA magazine that discussed the challenges of managing VPP programs in state-plan states with limited resources.
During the past year, Vermont OSHA (VOSHA) has accomplished the following:
Washington recognized its first VPP site in 1996, and currently has 10 VPP sites, including a construction site. The most recent recipient, Utility Vault Auburn, makes precast concrete products for the construction industry. It is a division of an international building materials group headquartered in Dublin, Ireland. They are the first precast facility in the United States to earn the VPP distinction. WISHA has a VPP Web site with information about all its VPP sites, plus information and instructions for interested applicants. It is online at www.lni.wa.gov/safety/topics/atoz/vpp/default.asp.
Wyoming offers three workplace recognition and assistance programs for state employers.
Partnerships and alliances
The Arizona Division of Occupational Safety and Health (ADOSH) alliances provide parties an opportunity to participate in a voluntary cooperative relationship with ADOSH for purposes such as training and education, outreach and communication, and promoting a national dialogue about workplace safety and health. These alliances have proved to be valuable tools for both ADOSH and its alliance participants.
Cal/OSHA, federal OSHA, the KFM Joint Venture and the District Council of Ironworkers/California Ironworker Employers Council have forged a safety and health partnership that gives Cal/OSHA and federal OSHA greater access to the San Francisco Bay Bridge project worksite in return for a compliance assistance role. The agreement has not yet been signed, but the parties are working in a compliance assistance mode.
The project, to replace the cantilever section of the bridge because of seismic instability, has an excellent safety record. There have been no fatalities, serious injuries or hospitalizations during the historic and complex replacement of the eastern span of the bridge. KFM has corrected any safety problems pointed out by Cal/OSHA without any hesitation.
Cal/OSHA’s presence has resulted in at least 60 violative conditions being corrected. The intent of Cal/OSHA is to have violations corrected immediately, to prevent accidents.
The agreement will also simplify jurisdictional issues between Cal/OSHA and federal OSHA relating to bridge construction. For example, cranes on barges on the water would be under federal OSHA jurisdiction while stationary cranes are under Cal/OSHA jurisdiction. Cal/OSHA requires crane certification; federal OSHA does not require such certification. The agreement provides that both state and federal inspectors will respond to incidents occurring on the project, eliminating confusion about jurisdictional issues and applicable regulations.
Cal/OSHA has also signed a partnership agreement with the Korean Immigrant Workers Association/Low Wage Advisory Board.
Extensive bark beetle infestation, coupled with the fires in mountainous areas such as Lake Arrowhead and Big Bear, Calif., caused extensive damage to thousands of trees in Southern California, necessitating their removal for purposes of public safety. Many of the damaged trees were unstable and prone to falling on people, power lines and structures in residential and commercial areas. Other trees needed to be removed to allow restoration of damaged telephone lines, cable and electrical lines. Last year’s Southern California fires covered more than half a million acres, caused 16 fatalities, destroyed approximately 2,300 homes and other structures, and caused billions of dollars in damage. Cal/OSHA participated in recovery activities by inspecting and evaluating work practices and providing technical expertise and compliance assistance to those contractors unfamiliar with California regulations.
The location and condition of damaged trees that needed to be removed made it difficult and hazardous for tree workers to access them by conventional methods, such as by climbing or use of aerial devices. As a result, Cal/OSHA proposed an emergency temporary standard that would allow qualified tree workers to be hoisted safely into trees by cranes, under specified conditions. Cal/OSHA also took an active role in the training of employers and employees about these procedures, following adoption of the emergency temporary standard. The standard has now been adopted as a permanent standard.
Cal/OSHA had 11 meetings with contractors and subcontractors to share findings and concerns, met with management teams from utility companies, had 14 training sessions and conducted 19 enforcement investigations.
Connecticut has signed two new alliances that should have a direct effect on the strategic plan "Identified high-hazard industries," State and Local Highway and Street Maintenance and Repair. The first alliance is with the University of Connecticut, Transportation Institute, that provides comprehensive training programs to those industries. The second alliance is with the Connecticut Highway and Street Supervisor’s Association (CHSSA), a professional organization dedicated to bringing best practices and quality training to its members.
The Indiana Department of Labor (IDOL) continued to pursue a partnership with the UAW and Visteon Corporation, Indianapolis facility, and expects the agreement will be executed in 2005.
IDOL entered into a partnership with the St. Joseph Valley Project’s Worker Rights Call Center and also pursued an expansion of the agreement to include the South Bend Human Rights Commission and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division. The partnership offers toll-free assistance to employees in English, Spanish and Polish.
Fiscal-year 2004 represented the first full year of the Kentucky Construction Partnership Program. Through this partnership program with the Associated General Contractors of Kentucky (AGC), the Kentucky program was influential in developing AGC’s safety committee.
Kentucky also entered into an agreement for a construction partnership for phase two of the Churchill Downs construction project.
During fiscal-year 2004, Maryland formed its first alliance with the Independent Electrical Contractors-Chesapeake. This alliance promotes safe and healthful working conditions for electrical contractors’ employees.
Maryland has continued to expand its Cooperative Compliance Partnership (CCP) program. The program had been offered to construction companies only. During fiscal-year 2004, the program was expanded to include general-industry companies. The first General Industry Cooperative Compliance Partnership was entered into with Paul Reed Smith Guitars. Three new construction cooperative compliance partnerships were entered into during fiscal-year 2004: Cherry Hill Construction at the MTA Light Rail project; Whiting-Turner at the Sheppard Enoch Pratt Hospital Renovation/Addition project; and Bovis Lend Lease at the Holy Cross Hospital Renovation/Addition project.
In fiscal-year 2004, Michigan renewed its partnership agreement with the UAW, Ford Motor Company and Visteon Corporation. The primary goals of the partnership continue to not only reduce injuries and illnesses at each location, but also to create a proactive safety and health culture, and a non-adversarial relationship that emphasizes cooperation. This fiscal year, Michigan conducted seven MIOSHA Days.
The MIOSHA alliance program was officially launched this fiscal year. Two formal alliances were signed, one with the Michigan Road Builders Association and the second with the Great Lakes Fabricators & Erectors Association, Ironworkers Local Union #25 and Operating Engineers Local Union #324.
MNOSHA Compliance has signed partnerships with the Association of General Contractors and the National Association of Tower Erectors. MNOSHA is working cooperatively with all members of federal Region V to establish a joint partnership with Ford Motor Company. MNOSHA Workplace Safety Consultation has numerous informal alliances with various entities. In fiscal-year 2004, these alliances will be formalized through signed agreements.
During fiscal-year 2004, in keeping with MNOSHA’s efforts to support and strengthen relationships with organizations that represent safety and health best practices, MNOSHA signed the Minnesota Machine Guarding Partnership. This partnership targets high-hazard industries that have a history of serious injuries and illnesses.
Nevada’s Safety Consultation and Training Section developed an informal alliance with the University Medical Center to jointly conduct workplace violence awareness training. As a result of the joint training, new workplace violence procedures and a safety assistance team to react to incidents have been instituted. Additionally, physical controls were implemented or budgeted to protect the employees in high-hazard areas.
The Safety Consultation and Training Section has worked with the Employment Education Outreach (EMPLEO) group to reach more of the recent immigrants and, particularly, the Hispanic community. EMPLEO is an alliance of employer, labor, community organizations, consulates, and federal, state and local governmental agencies dedicated to educating both employers and employees – especially recent immigrants – in Southern Nevada about regulatory issues and rights and responsibilities in the American workplace. A hot line was developed; cross-training was conducted for the service groups; and training of employers was conducted. This is to be expanded to more employee outreach and training.
Nevada has an ongoing effort with the Nevada Small Business Development Center (NSBDC). Nevada’s Safety Consultation and Training Section conducted training programs and NSBDC advertised them. The NSBDC established an online registration for easy access to register for the programs Safety Consultation and Training Section offers.
Nevada continues its partnering/alliance effort with the National Association of Minority Contractors (NAMC). The Safety Consultation and Training Section conducts a 10-hour construction course as part of the overall training NAMC provides.
Nevada is also working with the state’s Risk Management Division to enhance safety awareness for state employees, who are able to attend any programs on Nevada’s quarterly training schedules. To better leverage limited resources, Nevada conducts an eight-hour state safety supervisor course that all state supervisors attend and an advanced program about workplace evaluation and management tools.
North Carolina has partnerships with the Carolinas Roofing and Sheet Metal Contractors Association, Inc., Management of Environmental Safety and Health Program, North Carolina Forestry Association and the Safety and Health Council of North Carolina. Alliances have been established with the American Meat Institute, American Textile Manufacturer’s Institute, Boat People S.O.S., Inc. and Patterson & Wilder Construction Co., Inc.
At any given time, Oregon OSHA has about 20 active stakeholder collaborations and partnerships. Major revisions of standards are always undertaken with the involvement of a stakeholder committee, conferences are planned in partnership with various industry groups and new training initiatives often involve stakeholders.
One of the longest running and most active partnership committees in Oregon is the Forest Activities Advisory Committee. This committee of logging employers and employees, state and federal forestry agencies, industry associations, academia, equipment manufacturers and Oregon OSHA employees successfully drafted a plain-language forest activities standard that addresses Oregon-specific forest activities. Following that project, the committee began work to address wild land fire fighting, danger trees and tree climbing.
Also of note, the "502" Committee was formed to develop practical approaches to fall protection for construction processes where fall protection has been traditionally viewed as infeasible. The committee has published a guide for safely setting trusses in construction. Three Oregon truss manufacturers are now including the guide with all of their shipments.
The Puerto Rico state program and federal OSHA signed an agreement with Johnson & Johnson (J&J) Feb. 22, 2004, to establish a cooperative effort aimed at developing policies, practices and processes designed to reduce the incidence and severity of musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) associated with the performance of job tasks posing ergonomic risk factors. J&J enters this OSHA Strategic Partnership (OSP) to work with OSHA and PR OSHA to identify best practices for the development and implementation of successful ergonomics programs and guidelines. These best practices will be shared among all J&J facilities, employers and employees in related industries, and with the public, as appropriate.
The agreement establishing an alliance between OSHA, PR OSHA and the Department of Professional Development and Continuing Education of the Professional College of Engineers and Land Surveyors of Puerto Rico (CIAPR, for its Spanish acronym) was signed Sept. 9, 2004, to achieve training and education programs about occupational safety and health issues focusing on construction-industry hazards such as falls, electrical, struck by, and caught by and in between.
Two alliances for Puerto Rico OSHA were signed Dec. 20, 2004. One was with Abbott Puerto Rico Operations with the commitment to develop information and increase access to training resources for small and mid-sized contractors in the construction industry. An important goal is to translate and deliver in Spanish the 10-hour construction course to small and mid-sized contractors.
The other alliance was signed with the Medical Sciences Campus, University of Puerto Rico, and the American Industrial Hygiene Association, Puerto Rico Chapter. This alliance has the goal to provide students and AIHA members with information and training resources that will help them to protect employees of occupational hazards.
South Carolina entered into an alliance with The Overhead Power Line Safety Coordination Committee on April 15, 2005. This was the first alliance for South Carolina Occupational Safety and Health. This group includes representatives from electric utilities, SCDOT, Carolinas AGC and private businesses, all sharing a concern for the prevention of overhead power line contact accidents and fatalities.
Utah established it first strategic partnership with a local general contractor for the construction of a medical facility at the University of Utah medical complex. The general contractor reports a marked improvement in subcontractor attitude toward safety and health as a result of the partnership.
During the past year, VOSHA has accomplished the following:
In February 2005, Washington had its first Agriculture Safety Day, which drew a crowd of 260 agriculture employers, workers, supervisors, and safety and health professionals to Yakima, Wash., for a day of safety and health training. Jointly sponsored by the Governor’s Industrial Safety and Health Advisory Board, the Washington State Farm Bureau and the Department of Labor and Industries, and with support from the United Farm Workers, the conference focused on topics such as the cholinesterase-monitoring rule, recordkeeping and eye/ladder/tractor safety.
Experts from Washington’s Department of Labor and Industries, University of Washington, Department of Agriculture and Washington State University presented the information. Panel discussions included health care providers, workers and agricultural employers. The workshops and panel discussions were offered in English and Spanish; about one-third of the participants attended the Spanish presentations. Planning is already underway for the second Agriculture Safety Day, slated for February 2006 in Yakima.
Training and education initiatives
The Arizona Division of Occupational Safety and Health (ADOSH) continued to offer top quality hazard recognition training to more than 3,000 employers and conducted training to more than 4,500 employees. Its three trainers continued to provide training services throughout the state of Arizona. Participation from employers in rural areas increased significantly during 2003. Many of the responses provided to ADOSH concerning training sessions have been overwhelmingly appreciative of the agency’s efforts to bring the services out to the rural areas of Arizona.
Connecticut continues to provide consultation and training to public-sector and private-sector employers, employees and professional groups. CONN-OSHA has committed to providing 25 percent of its resources to industries identified as high hazard in the public-sector strategic plan and supports the federal Department of Labor area office local-emphasis programs and initiatives through training, outreach and consultation. Connecticut has undertaken a challenge to provide four teachers from each of its 19 vocational/technical schools with a 40-hour outreach course to enable the teachers to provide 10-hour courses to each student before the student enters the workforce.
Construction and general-industry safety courses were conducted by OTI in Indianapolis in an effort to cross-train Indiana staff members.
All Indiana OSHA (IOSHA) compliance officers attended an ergonomics course in Indianapolis, conducted by the OTI.
Maryland continues to develop ways to improve and conduct extensive training sessions for employers and employees. New seminars – Construction Site Safety II, Controlling Electrical Hazards, Health and Safety on the Web, and Scaffolding – were developed and presented to the public.
Another new program that was obtained by the Maryland Occupational Safety and Health (MOSH) program was the Youth at Work: Talking Safety train-the-trainer curriculum developed by the Young Workers Resource Center at the University of California at Berkeley. MOSH successfully obtained acceptance into the university’s grant program; the center came to Maryland to present the curriculum in two sessions to educators throughout the state. Through this program, MOSH was able to obtain the Maryland-specific curriculum and presented the program two additional times through its regular seminar schedule.
To affect the youth outreach portion of the strategic plan, letters were sent to 218 high schools and vocational centers in the state during fiscal-year 2003. The letter offered MOSH services at each facility to present information regarding safety in the workplace to students. Historically, MOSH had a presence at approximately four vocational schools in the Baltimore area. Since the mailing of the letter in 2003, that presence increased to 17 schools across the state in fiscal-year 2004. MOSH will send similar letters during 2005 to schools that were not reached through the first mailing. There is still a great deal of outreach to be accomplished in this area; however, MOSH has shown a drastic improvement in outreach toward the youth working population.
In Michigan, the Consultation Education and Training (CET) Division focuses its outreach efforts on those companies with the greatest need. Michigan is required to report its CET activities annually to the Michigan Legislature. During this fiscal year, 21 (d) and 23 (g) consultants provided the following outreach services: 4,439 safety and health consultations; 579 hazard surveys; and 2,163 workshops, seminars, apprentice training sessions and special programs. The total number of attendees for the CET programs was 12,144 employers and 16,542 employees. CET also distributed 364,187 pieces of safety and health literature.
CET initiatives are part of the MIOSHA strategic plan. CET initiatives are customized activities developed and delivered to employers and employees in response to significant changes in MIOSHA standards or emerging safety and health issues. In fiscal-year 2004, the CET Division: provided outreach activities to promote asbestos awareness through 21 half-day workshops; conducted 78 site visits to bedliner applications, which provided information about the health hazards and offered hazard surveys; and provided 272 companies with requested excavation training for 2,098 workers.
In recognition of the hazards present in the industry, Minnesota continues to conduct its bimonthly Construction Breakfast seminars. The events allow participants to stay current with worksite safety issues, while providing an opportunity to meet and interact with MNOSHA staff members in a relaxed, friendly atmosphere. Topics covered during fiscal-year 2004 included cold weather hazards, construction fatalities, forklift safety, residential fall protection and lead. Total attendance at the breakfasts during this period was 653 participants; including employers, employees, union officials, consultants and insurance loss-control representatives. Overall, MNOSHA staff members gave 125 outreach presentations during fiscal-year 2004, reaching 5,077 individuals. The subjects varied widely and included: hazardous waste operations and emergency response (HAZWOPER), nursing home compliance and lockout/tagout.
Another high-hazard industry that receives special attention from MNOSHA is logging. The LogSafe program provides loggers with the opportunity to attend a free, eight-hour safety seminar annually. By attending the seminar and showing proof of current workers’ compensation insurance, an employer is eligible for a rebate on its insurance premiums. This program is financed through a fee assessed to sawmills, based on the number of cords of wood its purchases or produces more than 5,000. The LogSafe program also operates a small video lending program to the public and provides on-site consultation.
In an effort to increase awareness of safety and health hazards and what is needed to control hazards, Nevada conducted 384 formal training sessions, reaching 8,340 participants, using 74 different programs. Of these, 27 formal training sessions – reaching 886 participants and using 11 different programs – were conducted in Spanish. Some of the programs presented include: Introduction to OSHA, Bloodborne Pathogens Awareness, Confined Space Awareness, Control of Hazardous Energy – Lockout/tagout, Fall Protection, Hazard Communication, Injury and Illness Recordkeeping, Powered Industrial Trucks and Written Workplace Safety Program. Continuing education units are available through a partnering effort with the state’s community colleges. The training conducted concentrated on high-hazard industries or targeted areas.
Nevada’s Safety Consultation and Training Section has a safety and health video lending library for Nevada employers. During the past year, 30,531 individuals have viewed these videos.
Nevada continues to produce Spanish and English videos and pamphlets about rights and responsibilities.
The New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services (NJDHSS) Public Employees Occupational Safety and Health (PEOSH) Program continues to respond to the needs of public employers and employees by developing model written plans and guidelines such as the Bloodborne pathogens standard model exposure control plan, the Public employer’s guide and model written program for the hazard communication standard and Computer workstation guidelines. The plans and guidelines were developed to reflect recent regulatory changes. New Jersey has also published numerous information bulletins to familiarize public employers and employees with the requirements of health standards. Bulletin topics included PEOSH adopts the hazard communication standard, Mold in the workplace, Hazardous materials regulations for New Jersey emergency responders and Renovation and construction in schools.
NJDHSS offers a variety of occupational health training sessions in response to concerns about workplace hazards. The NJDHSS PEOSH Education and Training Project presented training about: asbestos awareness and lead-based paint; bioterrorism and personal protective equipment; hazards of bird and pigeon droppings; bloodborne pathogens; custodial hazards; public work health hazards; ergonomics; the hazard communication standard; hazardous materials awareness; health and safety committees; hearing conservation; indoor air quality; mold in the workplace; outdoor work health hazards; personal protective equipment; renovation and construction in schools; and respiratory protection and fit testing. New Jersey continues to distribute occupational health literature and provide consultation by participating in numerous conventions and conferences. To provide public employers and employees with up-to-date information, NJDHSS PEOSH maintains a Web site at www.nj.gov/health/eoh/peoshweb that contains PEOSH publications, regulations and training notification.
New York continues to respond to the needs of public employers and small private employers by developing model written plans, such as the bloodborne pathogen, exposure control and permit required confined space plans. These plans, which are now available in an electronic fillable format, are distributed on CD upon request.
The Public Employee Safety and Health (PESH) Bureau and the 21D On-Site Consultation Bureau co-sponsored numerous Employee Injury Prevention in Long Term Care conferences throughout New York state, which focused on major causes and prevention strategies of employee injuries. Nationally renowned speakers presented cost/benefit information pertaining to ergonomic zero-lift policies and how to begin to implement such policies in the workplace. Other conference topics included slips, trips and falls, and an update about the changes to the recordkeeping regulation.
These bureaus also conducted several OSHA 10-hour construction training courses for New York State Department of Transportation employees and their contractors and the New York State Office of General Services employees. Three courses about job hazard analysis and accident prevention were also specially designed and conducted for the New York Power Authority. PESH also coordinated with numerous town and village highway departments, providing conference-style safety training sessions to employees and their supervisors. Vendors were invited to these conferences to display safety equipment and supplement training.
North Carolina has developed and conducts state specific 10-hour and 30-hour awareness workshops. The OSH Division conducts two 30-hour construction workshops and two 30-hour general industry workshops a year. This training effort is augmented by an average of eight to nine 10-hour workshops for both construction and general industry, and spearheaded by the Education, Training, and Technical Assistance Bureau (ETTA).
Specific training initiatives have been targeted for the fast-growing Spanish-speaking workforce. This includes construction forums about prevention of workplace fatalities by addressing electrical, struck-by, caught in between and fall hazards. The emphasis directed toward the Hispanic population is managed by the Hispanic outreach coordinator position that was established by the North Carolina General Assembly in 2004.
Oregon OSHA’s PESO training program is an easy-to-use tool for employers to deliver job safety training to Hispanic workers. The materials in each module are provided in both English and Spanish. The modules are designed for two-sided copying, so the English text and graphics are on the left side and the Spanish text and graphics are on the right side. The module "Cultures, Languages & Safety" shows how to deliver effective training to Hispanic workers. The materials are available on OR-OSHA’s Web site at www.orosha.org.
Safe Jobs/Smart Business initiative – Oregon OSHA has a partnership with ASSE to purchase display stands that are being strategically placed in building supply businesses to provide outreach to small employers that may have never had an opportunity to learn about Oregon OSHA and its service.
Puerto Rico OSHA continues to deliver training and conference sessions open to general audiences in towns throughout the island. Information about each session is published in the newspaper to reach and benefit a higher number of employers, employees, students and the general public. Some topics of the training sessions are: How to Develop and Maintain an Effective Safety and Health Program; Safety and Health in the Construction Industry; Fall Protection; Employees Involvement in the Safety and Health Program.
Puerto Rico emphasizes training to employers employing fewer than 100 employees. As part of its strategic plan, PR OSHA has chosen auto repair and body shops as a target industry. These employers receive preference for consultation visits and training. Puerto Rico OSHA also developed a booklet of safety and health guidelines related to the selected industry.
An OSHA 30-hour general industry class was conducted for the first time, with 37 participants. South Carolina Occupational Safety and Health (SCOSH) Voluntary Programs (OVP) will be working with the state’s Long Term Care Association to conduct an eight-hour course about topics specific to the industry. Participants will be awarded continuing education credits (CEUs); three additional classes have been planned throughout the state. OVP has one staff member participating on the state’s Hispanic task-force, which is providing training and education to employers and employees about the hazards of falls, trenching, electrical and being struck-by. OVP continues to actively participate with the Logging Association and the South Carolina Forestry Association in workshops throughout the state.
Tennessee OSHA continued to use senior compliance officers and senior consultants to deliver seminars and presentations to more than 7,000 people during 2004.
Through compliance assistance, Utah is working with the Utah Local Governments Trust, a public agency insurance mutual designed specifically for government agencies, including cities, towns, counties, special service districts and school districts, to provide assistance and training to the public sector about Utah Occupational Safety and Health regulations.
During the past year, VOSHA has accomplished the following training and education initiatives:
Virginia’s Consultation Program conducts formal training programs across the state by working in cooperation with various associations and groups. The department added a full-time training coordinator in November 2003, and developed a training calendar to offer courses about Virginia Occupational Safety and Health standards at various locations throughout the commonwealth.
The ninth Annual Occupational Safety and Health Conference was in Roanoke, Va., in June. More than 340 attendees and 40 vendors participated in the 2004 conference.
Washington continues to expand its use of the Internet and other electronic media in delivering safety information and training. WISHA has online interactive courses in many areas, including forklift safety, flagging safety, ergonomics awareness, noise exposure, engineering controls to reduce needlestick injuries, fall protection, respiratory protection, noise exposure, confined spaces, concrete pumpers, ladder safety and lawn mower safety. In an effort to better communicate and share workplace safety and health information with Spanish language communities, WISHA launched a Spanish version of the WISHA Web site in 2002.
In partnership with the construction industry, WISHA developed online videos for residential construction about siding, roofing and framing safety. All of these are available on the Web in English and Spanish. WISHA has now added online videos for back injury prevention, ergonomics awareness, nursing home hazards and solutions, and preventing road rage (aggressive driving).
The newest online resources are "training kits" to provide employers with materials and information needed to meet WISHA safety and health training requirements. Each kit includes PowerPoint presentations and other materials with detailed instructions about how to present the training. Topics include silica and lead in construction, respirator safety, chemical hazard communication, hearing protection and ergonomics awareness education.
Two recent preventable deaths in the construction industry prompted Washington’s Department of Labor and Industries to issue a hazard alert to roofing and construction contractors reminding them of the dangers of unguarded openings. The hazard alert is online at www.lni.wa.gov/safety/basics/hazalerts, along with notices about other potentially fatal workplace hazards.
The lack of relatively simple precautions on rooftop worksites led to the deaths of the two workers; WISHA is warning contractors to head off such tragedies that are so easy to avoid. WISHA regulations require that skylights, roof openings and floor openings be properly covered or guarded at all times. In August 2004, a worker on a commercial construction site died after falling 29 feet through a skylight opening. In September 2004, a residential construction worker suffered fatal injuries after he fell 15 feet through an unguarded roof opening. Four contractors were cited a total of $132,600 for exposing the workers to fall hazards.
Since 1998, eight construction workers in Washington state have died after falling through unguarded skylights, roof openings and floor openings. When people are focused on their work, it’s easy to lose track of something they know is there, such as a hole in the roof – that is why it is so important to be relentless about safety. Warning workers to "be careful" is not an effective safety restraint. A few minutes of work to cover the roof openings would have prevented the workers’ deaths.
Wyoming has a strong safety and health training program, reaching more than 2,100 people through almost 100 training presentations or seminars. Several training programs were developed for specific workforce segments:
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