Alliance -- An OSHA Cooperative Program << American Council of Independent Laboratories (ACIL)

On March 17, 2004, OSHA and ACIL formed an Alliance to raise awareness of OSHA’s Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory (NRTL) Program for general industry and in particular small businesses, and to increase awareness of OSHA’s requirements for product approvals by the NRTLs. The Alliance was renewed on November 18, 2005 and July 17, 2007. Due to organizational changes at ACIL and its focus on other projects and priorities, the Alliance was concluded on January 7, 2008.

Through OSHA and ACIL Alliance, the organizations worked together to meet the agreements’ goals and achieved a number of successes including:

  • On June 6, 2007, ACIL participated in Department of Labor Safety Day in Washington D.C. ACIL had an exhibit booth during the event.

  • On February 12, 2007, Assistant Secretary Edwin G. Foulke, Jr., USDOL-OSHA gave a presentation on the OSHA and ACIL Alliance and major OSHA initiatives at ACIL's 2007 Mid-Winter Meeting in Arlington, Virginia.

  • On November 16, 2006, an American Council for Electrical Safety (ACES) Meeting was held in Baltimore, Maryland. Bernard Pasquet, Electrical Engineer, Office of Technical Programs and Coordination Activities, Directorate of Science, Technology and Medicine, USDOL-OSHA gave an update on OSHA's NRTL Program. Patrick Kapust, Safety and Occupational Health Specialist, Office of Technical Programs and Coordination Activities, Directorate of Enforcement Programs, USDOL-OSHA gave an update on OSHA's enforcement program activities.

  • Through the Alliance, ACIL developed a number of compliance assistance materials and resources for OSHA staff and the public, including:

    • Pocket Cards depicting NRTL Program Product Certification Marks. OSHA distributed approximately 2500 of the laminated pocket cards to OSHA Regional, State Plan state and On-site Consultation Program staff and OSHA Training Institute instructors.

    • Article on the NRTL Program. The article, "OSHA Requirements for Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory Approval of Products," reviews the history of the NRTL program along with its operating standard, types of products that are required to receive the NRTL safety mark, and the certifying laboratories.

    • Quick Tips for Identifying Counterfeit Marks. The quick tips document provides information on how to identify counterfeit marks and products in the workplace.

    • White Paper: The Threat of Counterfeit Product Approval Marks Warrants Aggressive Detection and Enforcement Action. The white paper provides information to help safety and health professionals and the public understand the dangers of products with counterfeit marks.

Report prepared by: Rick Harris, then Alliance Coordinator, Office of Outreach Services and Alliances, January 7, 2008.