Alliance -- An OSHA Cooperative Program<< Back to Concluded Regional Alliances - Region VIII

  1. Alliance Background

  2. This alliance was originally formulated between the two parties to heighten the awareness of the OSHA rules and regulations as applied to excavation, trenching, and underground utility lines that apply to contractors throughout the state of Montana and to recognize and promote the Montana laws regarding contractor usage of the ‘Call Before You Dig” campaign. In the past several years contractors have been ignoring the Montana laws and the OSHA regulations thus resulting in several “hits” of underground utility lines causing, and on occasion, disrupting services to home owners, businesses, and private property owners. In the past twelve months there have been at least two incidences that caused severe damage to private homes.

    It is the intention of both parties, the OSHA Billings Area Office and the Montana Utilities Coordinating Council (MUCC), to renew this agreement for an additional two years.

    Date Signed Original Alliance Agreement:

    October 2, 2003

    Date Signed 1st Extension of Alliance Agreement

    October 8, 2004 – Expired October 2, 2005


    Both parties agreed to promote the other party during outreach, training sessions, presentations, booths, seminars, electronic mailings, media, and personal communications.

    Members of Implementation Team

    Bud Criner, MUCC
    David DiTommasso, OSHA Area Director
    Michael Foreman, OSHA Compliance Assistance Specialist
    Ross Yeager, OSHA Area Director


    None noted in agreement nor added

    Evaluation Period

    October 3, 2004 through October 2005

  3. Implementation Team Meetings
  4. 10/02/03: Signing of the original Alliance in the Billings Area Office
    10/18/04: Signed the first renewal/extension for one year
    11/16/04: Meeting with MUCC
    12/06/05: MUCC training to BAO CSHO staff
    02/11/05: Phone Call with MUCC
    02/28/05: Meeting with MUCC
    04/21/05: Phone Call with MUCC
    05/18/05: Phone Call with MUCC
    06/03/05: Phone Call with MUCC
    06/08/05: Phone Call with MUCC
    07/12/05: Phone Call with MUCC
    08/15/05: Phone Call with MUCC
    09/26/05: Meeting with MUCC
    09/27/05: Meeting with MUCC

  5. Events and Products
  6. Training and Education

      > Events

    Bud Criner, MUCC, represented the Alliance at over 80 meetings with contractors and associations throughout Montana

    The Billings Area Office , CAS, represented the Alliance at over 20 presentations to companies, associations, and contractors throughout Montana

      > Products

    Power point presentations by OSHA and MUCC
    Outreach letters by MUCC
    Laminated outreach materials by MUCC

    Outreach and Communication

      > Events: OSHA

      10/12/04: Training/Colstrip
      10/15/04: Presentation/BAO
      10/26/04: Speech/Teton Nat Park
      11/09/04: Training/Colstrip
      11/16/04: Speech/Missoula
      11/30/04: Presentation/Crow Agency
      12/02/04: Presentation/Missoula
      12/15/04: Presentation/Crow Agency
      02/02/05: Presentation/Denver
      02/11/05: Presentation/Billings
      02/25/05: Speech/Belgrade
      02/26/05: Speech/Missoula
      03/04/05: Booth/Billings
      03/05/05: Presentation/Billings
      03/10/05: Presentation/Kalispell
      03/10/05: Presentation/Kalispell
      03/17/05: Presentation/Billings
      03/22/05: Speech/Missoula
      03/24/05: Speech/Missoula
      04/07/05: Speech/Butte
      04/26/05: Presentation/Big Timber

      05/09/05: Training/ BAO
      06/15/05: Training/Glacier Park
      06/21/05: Training/Yellowstone Park
      07/21/05: Presentation/Darby
      07/27/05: Presentation/Teton Park
      08/11/05: Presentation/Crow Agency
      09/14/05: Training/Yellowstone Park

      > Events: MUCC

      MUCC conducted over 40 presentations throughout Montana to over 500 contractors, sub-contractors, owners, and operators.

    Products: OSHA

    Quarterly electronic newsletter to 205 subscribers

    Distributed by the MUCC and the Billings Area Office copies of the Trench Safety Awareness Training CD made by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and NIOSH to promote trenching safety.

    Promoting the National Dialogue on Workplace Safety and Health

      > Events

    At virtually every outreach session conducted by Mike Foreman, Compliance Assistance Specialist, and by Bud Criner, MUCC, the Alliance was presented and discussed. Contractors, sub-contractors, owners, and operators in the state were represented at each outreach session. An estimated 750 people were in attendance during the past 12 months.

      > Goals

    Training/education: Bud Criner conducted over 40 outreach and training sessions throughout the year to contractors and sub contractors in Montana

    Print/Electronic Media: The OSHA Area Office on a quarterly basis emailed to 206 subscribers a newsletter with references made to our alliance and the “Call Before You Dig:” campaign

    Speak/Exihibit: OSHA made over 20 speeches and presentations to contractors, groups, associations, and students defining the hazards associated with trenches and excavations. MUCC conducted over 40 presentations to contractors. MUCC attended 4 conventions and displayed materials and written information to contractors. The OSHA Area Office attended two conventions displaying written materials and information.

    Promote OSHA Programs: MUCC promoted partnerships, alliances, and VPP at all presentations.

    Share Information: In October of 2005 the Billings Area Office consulted with the MUCC on a recent gas line explosion that injured a member of the public. Both the MUCC and OSHA are sharing information on this incident.

    In May of 2005 Bud Criner presented to the Billings Area Office Compliance and Administration staff an in depth review of the One Call operation and explained the intricacies of the day to day operations. He focused on the contractor responsibilities and their process for requesting line locates at a job site. In 2005 the MUCC began issuing locate requests from contractors via the internet.

  7. Results

  8. During this one year alliance agreement the MUCC and OSHA have impacted more than 50 companies involved in trenching and excavation throughout the state of Montana. The number of violations by OSHA and the number of violations by contractors has decreased.

    On two occasions this year the BAO CSHO’s contacted MUCC for information regarding inspections involving contractors hitting underground gas lines. The information shared was essential to the case file.

  9. Upcoming Milestones

  10. This current alliance agreement expired in October of 2005. There are no plans at this time to renew the agreement. If sometime in the future the parties agree to continue in this direction a new alliance will be drafted and signed.