January 12-13, 1999

The tenth meeting of the OSHA Maritime Advisory Committee for Occupational Safety and Health (MACOSH) was called to order at 9:00 a.m. on January 12, 1999, in New Orleans, Louisiana. An electronic transcript of the full meeting (January 12-13, 1999) was sent separately to your for your review in February 1999. A record of the MACOSH members in attendance is noted in the transcript.

The Executive Summary and the transcript of the September 1998 meeting were approved unanimously. Larry Liberatore began the meeting with opening remarks and a brief overview of relevant OSHA activities. After the agenda was reviewed, members of the audience were asked to introduce themselves. At mid-morning, the full committee split into break-out groups to discuss the respective issues of rope-walking (shipyard) and marine cargo handling issues (longshoring) such as vertical tandem lifts and powered industrial trucks.

After lunch on the first day, the full committee met to summarize their break-out discussions. The shipyard group asked for a hand-on demonstration of rope-walking. Jim Thornton agreed to do this at Newport News in February. John McNeil and Doug Getchell noted longshoring’s concern for the recently promulgated powered industrial truck standard. They agreed to present their concerns in a letter to OSHA.

The full committee then split into breakout groups for the remainder of the first day to discuss items on the agenda. The shipyard group discussed their draft products on mentoring programs (Kathie Chumley), focused training (Jim Thornton), and MACOSH strategic plan (Iona Evans). The longshoring group discussed container top safety issues, including VTLs and NIST data on the strength of twist locks.

The full committee reconvened on January 13, 1999, at 8:30 a.m. In lieu of Marthe Kent (new Director of OSHA’s Safety Standards Directorate), Larry Liberatore gave an update on OSHA regulatory activities. He indicated that Marthe would be overseeing all OSHA standards activities. He also mentioned the recent reorganization of OSHA into super teams, including one for maritime activities. The team leader for the maritime super team had not yet been selected. Larry finally mentioned that he would be taking an IPA position for 2 years with the National Safety Council. MACOSH wished him well and thanked him for the excellent job he has done as head of the OSHA maritime standards program for many years.

After Larry’s presentation, Chet and Mike summarized the future initiatives for the shipyard group: 1) strategic plan for maritime standards (including a Directorate for Maritime Standards); 2) finalizing and implementing the mentoring program; 3) finalizing the focused training program. John and Doug then presented the longshoring initiatives: 1) continued container top safety issues, including VTL and twist locks; 2) continued discussion with OSHA on the powered industrial truck standard.

At the end of the morning session, the full committee heard a presentation by Steve Hudock (NIOSH) on the NSRP/NIOSH shipyard ergonomics study. Steve mentioned that the study has three phases: 1) identify candidate sites and high hazard operations (7 sites have been identified from the 13 visited); 2) conduct intervention study at the candidate sites to identify and document ergonomic solutions; and 3) prepare final consensus guidelines on ergonomics for the shipyard industry. If all goes well, the study will be completed in 2 years. MACOSH agreed to establish an ergonomics task team of Kathie Chumley, Jim Thornton, Chico McGill, and Mike Flynn from shipyards, and John McNeill and Doug Getchell (or Dennis Daggett) from longshoring. This team will interact with Steve Hudock and Larry Reed on the study.

After lunch on January 13, the full committee reconvened to discuss plans for the next meeting. The next meeting of MACOSH will be held in Baltimore on March 30-31, 1999, and the following meeting will be held in the San Francisco area on June 29-30, 1999. In advance of the next meeting, the committee agreed that a representative group from MACOSH would meet the Charles Jeffress to discuss issues related to maritime standards. [Note: Iona, Chet, Chico, John M., and Larry Reed met with Charles Jeffress, Marthe Kent, and Paul Rossi on February 17, 1999.] The committee also agreed to have Steve Hudock, Karl Siegfried (NSRP co-product officer), and Larry Reed present an overview of the ergonomics study to OSHA staff. [Note: Steve, Karl, and Larry met with OSHA staff on February 24, 1999.] Subsequent to the January 1999 meeting, the committee held two conference call meetings to prepare for the two February meetings and to finalize the agenda for the March meeting.