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OSHA and the Professional Landcare Network (PLANET) Alliance
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On February 23, 2004, OSHA and PLANET formed an Alliance to provide large and small landscape industry businesses and their employees, including but not limited to youth workers, low-literacy level, and non-English, speaking workers, with information and guidance to help them reduce strains caused by manual material handlings, amputations, motor vehicle crashes, as well as slip and trip injuries. The Alliance was renewed April 6, 2006.

Because OSHA and PLANET decided to refocus the Alliance agreement, the organizations agreed to conclude the Alliance as of February 23, 2008. Through OSHA's and PLANET's work together to meet the agreement's goals, a number of successes resulted from the Alliance, including:
  • PLANET, and a number of other Alliance Program participants, helped support the 2007 and 2008 North American Occupational Safety and Health (NAOSH) Weeks. Sponsored annually by the American Society of Safety Engineers, an Alliance Program participant, and the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering, the Week focuses on the importance of preventing injuries and illnesses in the workplace.

  • On October 27, 2007 Ron McGill, then Area Director, Nashville, Tennessee and Frankford, Kentucky Area Offices, USDOL-OSHA gave a presentation "OSHA Resources and the OSHA and PLANET Alliance" to green industry providers at the Green Industry Conference and EXPO in Lexington, Kentucky. Suzanne Porter, Industrial Hygienist, Frankfort, Kentucky Area Office, USDOL-OSHA, and Richard Taylor, Safety Specialist, Frankfort, Kentucky Area Office, USDOL-OSHA, represented the Alliance Program in PLANET's Safety Central resource area and distributed safety and health information and answered questions during the 2007 Green Industry Conference and EXPO.

  • On April 6, 2006, Assistant Secretary Edwin G. Foulke, Jr., USDOL-OSHA and John Gibson, President, PLANET spoke at OSHA's Teen Summer Job Safety Campaign Kick-off event in Alexandria, Virginia. More than 130 safety and health professionals, teachers and students attended the event.

  • On November 2-5, 2005, PLANET's Green Industry Conference was held in Orlando, Florida. On November 5, 2005, Keith Brown, Safety and Health Consultant, University of South Florida (USF), Safety Florida On-site Consultation Program presented an update on the On-site Consultation Program's activities in Florida and participated in a panel discussion on the Alliance Program. OSHA representatives staffed an Alliance Program exhibit booth.

  • On September 8, 2005, PLANET representatives participated in the Alliance Program's Small Business Roundtable in Washington, DC. During the meeting, Alliance Program participants provided a number of recommendations for OSHA on how to enhance its small business compliance assistance activities and resources.

  • Through the Alliance, PLANET developed a series of Safety Tips Sheets, in English and in Spanish, for the landscaping and horticultural industries. The following Tips Sheets were posted on PLANET’s Web site in 2005 and 2006 and linked to from the OSHA and PLANET Alliance Web page on the OSHA Web site and the OSHA Landscape and Horticultural Services Safety and Health Topics page.

    • Safety Tips Sheet No. 1, Slip and Trip Injuries
    • Safety Tips Sheet No. 2, Reducing the Risk of Lifting Injuries in the Landscape and Horticultural Industries
    • Safety Tips Sheet No. 3, Driving Defensively to Reduce the Risk of a Motor Vehicle Crash
    • Safety Tips Sheet No. 4, Reducing the Risk of an Amputation
  • Members of PLANET provided OSHA with their expertise during the agency's development of the Landscape and Horticulture Services Safety and Health Topics page on OSHA's Web site. The Topics page provides the public with numerous resources and information relevant to the industry.
Report prepared by: Adam Brumbergs, Research Assistant, Office of Outreach Services and Alliances, July 2, 2008.