April 15, 2007 · Volume 6, Issue 8
A bi-weekly e-news memo with information, updates, and results from OSHA about safety and health in America's workplaces.


In This Issue
OSHA Concludes Regulatory Flexibility Act Review for Excavations Standard
Stakeholder Meetings on Ionizing Radiation Continue
North American Occupational Safety and Health Week Slated for May 6-12
OSHA Alliance Program Participants Join Forces to Offer Aerial Lift Training
Latest Strategic Partnership Activity
Alliance Program Update
Voluntary Protection Programs Activity
‘QuickTips’ from QuickTakes

OSHA Concludes Regulatory Flexibility Act Review for Excavations Standard
    OSHA is making available the “look-back” study for OSHA’s construction standard on excavations. The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 directs OSHA to review and evaluate the effectiveness of its standards and the impact those standards have had on lowering injuries, illnesses and fatalities in the workplace. The agency undertook the review of the standard to determine whether the rule should be continued without change or should be amended or revoked. OSHA concluded the Excavations Standard should remain in effect, but it will issue some improved guidance and training materials to help employers keep their employees safe. Details of the “look back” appear in the March 29 Federal Register.

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Stakeholder Meetings on Ionizing Radiation Continue
    OSHA is inviting the public to participate in its final two informal stakeholder meetings on occupational exposure to ionizing radiation. There are two meetings: the first is April 19 at the Crowne Plaza Chicago O’Hare Hotel, and the second will be in Washington, D.C., on April 26. Details are available in the March 30 Federal Register.

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North American Occupational Safety and Health Week Slated for May 6-12
   OSHA and the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) will kick off a week dedicated to transportation safety on May 7 in Washington, D.C. North American Occupational Safety and Health (NAOSH) Week is a joint venture with the United States, Canada and Mexico to raise awareness of occupational safety, health and environmental programs among employers, employees and the public. Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Edwin G. Foulke, Jr., will launch the event at 10 a.m. at the U.S. Department of Labor. Winners of the ASSE kids’ NAOSH “Safety-on-the-Job” poster contest and their families will be on hand for the festivities.

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OSHA Alliance Program Participants Join Forces to Offer Aerial Lift Training
    Altec Industries, Inc., a leading manufacturer of aerial devices, derricks and specialty equipment for the electric utility, telecommunications and tree care industries, and the Safety Council of Northwest Ohio are teaming up to provide hands-on aerial lift training to federal and state compliance safety and health officers on May 3 at the Safety Council’s training center in Northwood, Ohio. For more information, contact OSHA’s Toledo, Ohio, area office at (419) 259-7542.

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Latest Strategic Partnership Activity
    OSHA’s Dallas area office and the Black Contractors Association signed a strategic partnership to enhance the safety for construction employees by creating a comprehensive safety and health program emphasizing employer awareness of hazardous conditions, including prevention of electrocutions, falls and injuries caused by being struck by or caught between objects.

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Alliance Program Update
    Region I: OSHA’s Concord, N.H., area office formed a new alliance with the New Hampshire Small Business Development Center and the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services’ OSHA Consultation Program to provide the Granite State’s smaller businesses and employers with safety and health information. Region II: Helping employees and employers identify, address and prevent work-related health hazards is the focus of a new alliance signed between OSHA’s Long Island, N.Y., area office and the Long Island Occupational and Environmental Health Center. OSHA's Parsippany, N.J., area office, the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development, and El Refugio, a Newton-based, nonprofit outreach center for Hispanic families, joined forces to form an alliance to reduce the number of Hispanic employees killed and injured in construction and general industry. Region VI: Promoting job safety and health is the goal of an alliance formed between OSHA’s Lubbock, Texas, area office and Vintage Township Builders Guild.

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Voluntary Protection Programs Activity
    L’Oréal USA’s Florence, Ky., manufacturing plant recently earned OSHA’s highest safety and health award—a Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP) “Star” flag. With this flag, L’Oréal fulfills a 2003 promise to obtain VPP status for all six of its U.S. plants within five years. Visit “recent approvals” on the VPP page of OSHA’s Web site to see a list of other employers approved for new or continued participation in VPP. We encourage you to examine the entire VPP site to learn more about how OSHA’s premier cooperative program can help protect employees and lower workers’ compensation costs.

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‘QuickTips’ from QuickTakes
    This is the time of year when teens “spring” into action searching for summer employment. Often, these jobs are a teen’s first work experience. In addition, teens often have limited training and work as seasonal/temporary employees. These facts partially explain why teens experience a higher risk of injury, illness and fatality in many industries, including the construction industry. That’s why OSHA is striving to reduce work-related injuries to teens by teaching them on-the-job safety and how to integrate safety principles into their work from the beginning of their summer work experience. OSHA recommends teens wear the following items if they are working in construction:
  • Gloves
  • Hard hat
  • Earplugs or earmuffs
  • Boots with safety toe
  • Safety glasses or face shield
        The Teen Employees Web page on OSHA’s Web site serves as an important resource to help employers further prevent teen injuries, illnesses and fatalities in the workplace. Look for more safety and health-related ‘QuickTips’ in your next issue.

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    Editor: Elaine Fraser, OSHA Office of Communications, 202-693-1999