July 1, 2005 · Volume 4, Issue 13
A bi-weekly e-news memo with information, updates, and results from OSHA about safety and health in America's workplaces.
Archive Notice - OSHA Archive
NOTICE: This is an OSHA Archive Document, and may no longer represent OSHA Policy. It is presented here as historical content, for research and review purposes only.


In This Issue
OSHA Seeking Proposals for $6.9 Million in New Safety and Health Training Grants
U.S. Postal Service Named First Federal Agency in OSHA's 'VPP Corporate' Pilot Program
OSHA Seeks Nominations for Maritime Advisory Committee
NACOSH Schedules July Meeting
Regional Alliances Formed in Puerto Rico, Massachusetts
OSHA, Shipbuilders Council of America Renew Alliance
Louisiana, Texas Worksites in VPP Spotlight
OSHA Teams with South Florida Associated General Contractors for Construction Safety
OSHA Debuts New Pocket Guide on Construction Safety
Spanish-language Version of Worker Safety and Health Training Set for Chicago
Quick Action by OSHA Compliance Officer Averts Trench Accident
OSHA Shines at Central Ohio Latino Festival
Voluntary Protection Programs Activity


OSHA Seeking Proposals for $6.9 Million in New Safety and Health Training Grants
    OSHA is making approximately $6.9 million available in new grants to nonprofit organizations for safety and health training and educational programs under the agency's Susan Harwood Training Grants program. An additional $3.3 million will be used to fund renewal grants for recipients of 2004 institutional competency building grants. OSHA will be accepting new applications for two categories of grants: Targeted Topic Training Grants will support training for construction hazards and general industry hazards. Approximately $2.9 million is available to support 1-year grants each averaging $150,000. OSHA Training Materials Development Grants will support the development, evaluation, and validation of training materials for construction hazards, general industry hazards, respiratory diseases, transportation, and an "other topic" addressing several broad topics. An estimated $4 million is available to support 1-year grants each averaging $200,000. Details about the grants and application process appear in the June 21 Federal Register. Applications are due July 21.

U.S. Postal Service Named First Federal Agency in OSHA's 'VPP Corporate' Pilot Program
     The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) was recognized by OSHA as a Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP) "Corporate Pilot" Program during a June 21 ceremony at USPS Headquarters in Washington. Assistant Secretary of Labor for OSHA Jonathan L. Snare presented the award and lauded the federal agency's "continued commitment to the safety and health of the entire USPS workforce." The VPP Corporate Pilot program streamlines the application and onsite evaluation processes for corporations that have made a commitment to VPP. USPS joins Georgia-Pacific Corporation as the first two organizations to be formally accepted in the VPP Corporate Pilot Program.

OSHA Seeks Nominations for Maritime Advisory Committee
    OSHA is seeking nominations for persons to serve on the Maritime Advisory Committee for Occupational Safety and Health (MACOSH). MACOSH members advise the Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health on issues and concerns relating to occupational safety and health for workers involved in the shipbuilding, shipbreaking, ship repair, and longshoring in the maritime industries. The committee will consist of 15 members. Committee members will be chosen from among a cross-section of individuals representing employers, employees, federal and state safety and health organizations, professional organizations specializing in occupational safety and health, and national standards setting groups. Details for the nomination procedure are in the June 23, 2005, Federal Register. Nominations must be received by Aug. 8, 2005.

NACOSH Schedules July Meeting
    The National Advisory Committee on Occupational Safety and Health (NACOSH) scheduled its next meeting in Washington, D.C., for July 14 beginning at 9 a.m. Notice of meeting appears in the June 27, 2005, Federal Register. Acting Assistant Secretary of Labor for OSHA Jonathan L. Snare will deliver opening remarks. Agenda items include updates on activities of both OSHA and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, as well as follow-up reports on the NACOSH workgroups. Presentations will also be made on the National Occupational Research Agenda, enforcement update, alliances and partnerships, and a standards update. NACOSH advises the secretaries of labor and health and human services on occupational safety and health programs and policies.

Regional Alliances Formed in Puerto Rico, Massachusetts
   Improving job safety and health for employees in the general industry sector was the focus of a new alliance signed June 16 between OSHA's New York Region, American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA), San Juan, Puerto Rico Local Section, and the University of Puerto Rico's School of Public Health-Medical Sciences Campus. The agreement will provide AIHA members and others with information, guidance, and training resources to protect employees' health and safety, particularly in reducing and preventing exposure to occupational health hazards relating to ergonomics, indoor air quality, noise, and airborne contaminants. Enhancing safety and health in construction is the focus of a new alliance formed between OSHA's Springfield, Mass., Area Office and Worcester Contractors. The agreement seeks to reduce hazards and improve safety and health for construction workers throughout the greater Worcester, Mass., area by equipping them with the knowledge and ability to identify and eliminate hazards before they cause injury or illness.

OSHA, Shipbuilders Council of America Renew Alliance
   OSHA renewed an alliance with the Shipbuilders Council of America that will continue to foster a safer and more healthful environment for workers in American shipyards. The renewal calls for a continuing focus on advancing a culture of injury and illness prevention, and providing opportunities for improving workplace safety and health within the maritime industry.

Louisiana, Texas Worksites in VPP Spotlight
    OSHA's Dallas Region recognized Louisiana Pigment Co., Westlake, La., as a Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP) "Star" site during a June 16 ceremony. John Miles, OSHA regional administrator, presented the award and saluted Louisiana Pigment's "excellence in effective safety and health management." Borger, Texas-based American Equipment Co. was also recognized for its safety and health management system. Richard Tapio, area director at OSHA's Lubbock Area Office, presented the VPP "Star" award to the company June 23, citing management's efforts in "maintaining an injury and illness rate that is 100 percent below the national average for their industry." The VPP "Star" program recognizes exemplary worksites with comprehensive, successful safety and health management systems.

OSHA Teams with South Florida Associated General Contractors for Construction Safety
   OSHA and the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), South Florida Chapter, are launching a partnership under OSHA's Strategic Partnership Program (OSPP) to improve safety and health at construction sites. A signing ceremony will take place July 6 at OSHA's Jacksonville Area Office. Under the partnership, OSHA and AGC will work together to achieve an annual three percent reduction in injury and illness rates. They also will implement safety and health management systems at partners' job sites and safety training for managers, supervisors and employees. OSPP moves away from traditional enforcement methods and embraces collaborative agreements. Through OSPP, OSHA and its partners agree to work cooperatively to address critical safety and health issues.

OSHA Debuts New Pocket Guide on Construction Safety
    Employers and workers in the construction industry will benefit from a new OSHA Pocket Guide on Construction Safety. This quick-reference tool helps identify potential hazards and possible solutions to those hazards for the most frequently cited standards in construction. It also offers safety checklists on personal protection equipment, scaffolding, electricity, floor and wall openings, elevated surfaces, hazard communication, cranes, and forklifts to help avoid hazards that cause injuries, illnesses and fatalities. This guide, along with the Pocket Guide on Concrete Manufacturing, is one in a series on worker safety being developed by OSHA. The publications can be downloaded from OSHA's web site on the publications page or can be ordered by calling OSHA's publications office at (202) 693-1888.

Spanish-language Version of Worker Safety and Health Training Set for Chicago
     OSHA is joining participating state agencies and universities in the Chicago area to offer the Spanish-language version of the agency's ten-hour general industry safety and health course. The two-day course will be offered Aug. 2-3 at Chicago's West Side Technical Institute, 2800 S. Western Avenue. A wide range of subjects will be covered including machine safeguarding, personal protective equipment, lockout/tagout, bloodborne pathogens, and more. Information on the training is available through Harry S. Truman College at (773) 907-3994 or (773) 907-4367 (bilingual).

Quick Action by OSHA Compliance Officer Averts Trench Accident
     Four workers were saved within minutes of a trench cave-in by OSHA Compliance Officer Gary Weil of OSHA's Chicago North Area Office. While in transit through Buffalo Grove, Ill., Weil observed the employees working in a trench lacking cave-in protection. He acted swiftly and ensured all four workers immediately exited the trench just before a large section of earth and gravel caved into the trench from the undermined sidewalk area directly above where the work was being conducted.

OSHA Shines at Central Ohio Latino Festival
     OSHA was one of many exhibitors at the June 17-18 Central Ohio Latino Festival in Columbus, Ohio. This two-day event is the largest of its kind in Ohio and second in the Midwest drawing more than 300,000 attendees. This year marked the festival's 10th anniversary of showcasing Latino culture and heritage. Officials from OSHA's Columbus Area Office greeted hundreds of local immigrants from Latin American and Caribbean countries at the booth featuring several OSHA Spanish-language publications.

Voluntary Protection Programs Activity
    The following companies were approved last month for new or continued participation in OSHA's Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP): Region I: U.S. Postal Service (USPS), Springfield Priority Mail Processing Center, Springfield, Mass. (New Star) Region II: USPS, Jamestown Post Office, Jamestown, N.Y. (New Star) Region VI: Clean Harbors Environmental Services, Inc., Waynoka, Okla. (New Star); International Paper, Gurdon Wood Products, Gurdon, Ark. (Cont. Star).

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