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Region VIII Alliance Educates OSHA, Employees, and Students on Automotive Lift Hazards

OSHA's Region VIII's Bismarck, North Dakota Area Office signed an Alliance on October 2, 2006 with the Automotive Lift Institute (ALI) and automobile dealer associations in North and South Dakota to reduce and prevent workplace hazards associated with automotive lifts. The participating automobile dealer associations are the Automobile Dealers Association of North Dakota, South Dakota Automobile Dealers Association, and South Dakota Independent Automobile Dealers Association.

One of the Alliance's goals is to add automotive lift safety information to the curriculum of trade schools and career education centers. To that end, the Alliance participants worked with the North Dakota Department of Career and Technical Education to add information on automotive lift training to its safety and health curriculum.

To further the Alliance's goal of disseminating automotive lift safety information, ALI has distributed its automotive lift safety training materials to other Alliance participants, companies throughout OSHA Region VIII (which includes North
and South Dakota, Colorado, Utah, Montana, and Wyoming), On-site Consultation Programs, and OSHA staff around the country.

ALI President R.W. (Bob) O'Gorman gave a presentation at the OSHA On-Site Consultation Training Conference in Seattle, Washington on April 30, 2008. The presentation was designed to educate On-site Consultation Program staff on the hazards and safe work practices associated with automotive lifts. ALI also sent its lift inspector/operator training package to the On-site Consultation Program offices in all 50 states. The training package includes:

  • ALI's safety manual and companion DVD entitled "Lifting It Right." The 24-minute DVD is hosted by racing legends Richard and Kyle Petty.
  • Three American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standards on automotive lifts: 1) ANSI/ALI ALOIM:2008 – Standard for Automotive Lifts – Safety Requirements for Operation, Inspection and Maintenance; 2) ANSI/ALI ALCTV:2006 – Standard for Automotive Lifts – Safety Requirements for Construction, Testing and Validation; and 3) ANSI/ALI:2001 – Standard for Automotive Lifts – Safety Requirements for Installation and Service.
  • Automotive Lift Safety Tips Sheet. This special edition of ALI's Tips Sheet, which includes both the ALI and Alliance logos, is designed to be posted in workplaces with automotive lifts.

In July 2008, ALI shipped its automotive lift safety training package to every OSHA Area Office. This material will help OSHA's Compliance Assistance Specialists and other staff learn about the safety hazards associated with automotive lifts and provide outreach to employers and employees in this industry.

"Lifting It Right" DVD developed by ALI and hosted by Richard and Kyle Petty. "Lifting It Right" DVD developed by ALI and hosted by Richard and Kyle Petty.


In addition, ALI developed a 16-page pamphlet called "Service Bay Safety – How Safe Is Your Shop?" This pamphlet was originally developed as an insert for the April 2008 issue of Professional Tools and Equipment News. ALI shipped copies of the pamphlet to approximately 120,000 automotive shops across North America. ALI also shipped 1,000 copies to the Bismarck Area Office and 100 copies to each OSHA Area Office across the country.

"As a result of ALI's Alliance with OSHA, there has been a significant increase in interest from lift users and owners in ALI's mission to promote the safe design, construction, installation, and use of automotive lift products," said Bob O'Gorman.

During 2007 and 2008, OSHA staff from the Bismarck Area Office met with representatives from the automobile dealer associations participating in the Alliance to provide information on the Alliance and the Area Office's Local Emphasis Program on automotive lifts. OSHA staff also provided these associations with information about automotive lift safety to publish in their newsletters and Web sites. In addition, Area Office staff provided training to the North and South Dakota On-Site Consultation Programs on automotive lift inspections and the ANSI/ALI standards.

As part of the Alliance's goal to promote the national dialogue on automotive lift safety, Scott Overson, an OSHA Compliance Safety and Health Officer from the Bismarck Area Office, serves on the review committee for the ANSI/ALI ALOIM Standard. "While we still have work to do to improve safety in automotive shops," said Overson, "this Alliance has been successful in raising awareness concerning inspection and maintenance procedures in companies that are members of the automobile dealer associations participating in the Alliance."

For more information about this Alliance, contact Scott Overson in OSHA's Bismarck, North Dakota Area Office.

-- As of December 2008.

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Alliance Among OSHA Region VIII's Denver and Englewood, Colorado Offices and Colorado Safety Association Provides Training

Since this success story was posted in May 2006, representatives of the Alliance have trained and certified many more employees in the Basic Orientation Plus (BOP) Contractor Training course. In 2006, 2,856 employees were BOP trained and certified; in 2007, the number grew to 3,275. As of January 2008, 7,447 employees have been trained and certified; of these, 545 are Spanish speakers. The 4.5-hour BOP contractor training course is offered by Colorado Safety Association (CSA) instructors every Friday at the CSA office in Denver and every Monday at the Coors Brewing Company in Golden, Colorado. In addition, periodic on-site BOP training courses are offered at the Suncor Refinery and at various other establishments throughout the State upon request. OSHA representatives routinely discuss the course during outreach activities and promote it via local e-newsletters. CSA promotes the training course on its Website and in its brochures.

-- As of April 2008

On November 17, 2004, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) Region VIII Denver, Colorado, and Englewood, Colorado, Area Offices and the Colorado Safety Association (CSA), a chapter of the National Safety Council, signed an Alliance to work together to improve health and safety of Colorado's employees, including Spanish-speaking workers. Through the Alliance, OSHA and CSA are helping industrial and construction contractors, especially small businesses, reduce injuries and illnesses related to work performed on Colorado's multi-employer worksites.

In early 2003, CSA contacted Region VIII's Denver and Englewood Area Offices to discuss developing an Alliance after association members asked about the availability of affordable safety training for their contractors. After signing the Alliance, the organizations worked together to review courses that could be used to provide safety and health training to employees that work at multi-employer worksites. As a result, OSHA Region VIII Compliance Assistance Specialists (CASs) Megan Meagher and George Flynn and Compliance Program Manager Ray Nellor met with CSA on January 3, 2005 to preview the Basic Orientation Plus (BOP) Contractor Training course.

CSA's Web site states that this 4.5 hour course was " . . . developed by the Association of Reciprocal Councils (ARSC) and is offered in many locations across the country. The training was developed to meet the classroom training requirements of OSHA Standards." The target audience for the BOP Contractor Training course comprises contractor employees working on industrial and construction sites and new employees needing basic safety orientation. The topics covered include general and personal safety considerations, hazard communication, personal protective equipment, respiratory protection, hearing conservation and electrical safe work practices.

In January 2005, CSA began offering the BOP Contractor Training course at its offices every Friday. The association charges $55 per student. According to CSA, from January through November 2005, it trained 1,269 people (including approximately 100 Spanish speakers). In January and February 2005, CSA also presented an overview of the course to OSHA's Compliance Safety and Health Officers in the Denver and Englewood Area Offices.

"The Alliance that we have had with OSHA has resulted in a successful outcome for owner companies and their contractors. In the first three months of 2006, we have doubled the number of employees trained during all 12 months of last year. We are especially pleased with the large number of Spanish speaking workers who have taken the program" said Melodye Turek, CSA President.

In addition, OSHA and CSA jointly deliver a one-hour presentation about the agency's Multi-Employer Worksite Policy and the BOP Contractor Training course to safety and health groups around the state. During the presentation, an OSHA CAS explains the safety and health challenges encountered at a multi-employer work site. Then, a CSA trainer explains how the course can be used by an employer to help meet the challenges of training its workforce.

On January 11, 2005, OSHA and CSA made the Multi-Employer Worksite Policy and the BOP Contractor Training course presentation to the Pueblo Safety and Health Promotion Council. In May, July, September, October and November 2005, OSHA and CSA presented the information at the Voluntary Protection Program Participants' Association Region VIII Chapter Conference, the Colorado Rural Electric Association, the Mesa County Safety and Health Council, the Northern Colorado and Denver chapters of the American Society of Safety Engineers. Approximately 200 safety and health professionals attended the presentations.

OSHA and CSA are working to share the success of their Alliance and the impact of the BOP Contractor Training course. For example, the Denver and Englewood Area Offices include information about the course in each quarterly issue of its electronic newsletter, Colorado Compliance Assistance Newsletter. The offices send the newsletter to about 2,500 email addresses. In addition, the CSA has formed a partnership with and Pueblo Community College (PCC), another OSHA Region VIII Alliance participant, to present the BOP Contractor Training course at the college.

Through their Alliance, OSHA and CSA will continue to work together to provide the Multi-Employer Worksite Policy and the BOP Contractor Training course presentation to safety and health and business organizations around the state. OSHA and CSA are also committed to reaching out to and encouraging all small businesses in Region VIII to provide safety and health training for their employees.

"This successful Alliance has encouraged the idea that everyone is responsible for workplace safety and health" said John Healy, Region VIII Englewood, Colorado, Area Office Director.

For additional information on this Alliance and its activities, please contact OSHA Region VIII representatives; George Flynn, Compliance Assistance Specialist in the Englewood Area Office, or Megan Meagher, Compliance Assistance Specialist in the Denver Area Office.

-- As of May 2006; updated April 2008.

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Alliance Between OSHA Region VIII And The Montana Utility Coordinating Council Improves Awareness Of "Call Before You Dig" Law

On October 2, 2003, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Region VIII, Billings, Montana, Area Office and the Montana Utility Coordinating Council (MUCC) signed an Alliance designed to promote worker safety by reducing the number of trenching accidents. Specifically, the Alliance is working to encourage the implementation of the "Call Before You Dig" law, which protects the health and safety of workers by reducing the hazards (e.g., fires, explosions) associated with trenching and excavation when an underground utility is inadvertently struck. In the past, contractors have struck underground utility lines disrupting service to homes and businesses and, occasionally, causing injury.

MUCC, which was formed in 1989 by Bud Criner, oversees the Montana state law on excavation near underground facilities. MUCC is a chapter of the Utility Notification Center—a one-call agency dedicated to safeguarding citizens and construction personnel who work around utilities as well as safeguarding the underground infrastructure of pipes, mains and lines that bring utilities to a community. The Utility Notification Center serves Montana, Washington and Oregon, and conducts outreach and training to most of the excavation contractors operating in Montana. For more information on the Utility Notification Center, contractors and citizens can log on to www.callbeforeyoudig.org.

During the first year of the Alliance, OSHA and MUCC formed an implementation team to develop an action plan, to determine working procedures and to identify the roles and responsibilities of the participants. They met quarterly to track and share information on activities and results in achieving the goals of the Alliance. Together, they developed training and education programs for excavation contractors on the requirements for locating and identifying underground utilities and for implementing the "Call Before You Dig" law. From October 2003 to October 2004, MUCC traveled throughout the State and:

  • Presented information about the Alliance to over 500 contractors and sub-contractors at over 40 locations;
  • Represented the Alliance in outreach and training sessions to associations, contractors and sub-contractors at over 65 meetings;
  • Attended four conventions of contractors and displayed materials and written information explaining the "Call Before You Dig" law;
  • Promoted and encouraged MUCC members to participate in OSHA's cooperative programs such as compliance assistance, the Voluntary Protection Program, Consultation, and SHARP; and
  • Conducted a training session for OSHA Region VIII compliance staff.

As a part of the Alliance, the OSHA Region VIII, Billings Area Office has:

  • Written and disseminated information on the "Call Before You Dig" campaign in its electronic newsletter, called the Montana OSHA Compliance Assistance Network Newsletter, that is sent quarterly to 195 subscribers; and
  • Given over 20 speeches to contractors, groups, associations, and students defining the hazards associated with trenches and excavations.

Mike Foreman, Compliance Assistance Specialist, from the OSHA Region VIII, Billings Area Office has conducted many outreach sessions and at nearly every one he has discussed the Alliance. An estimated 1400 people were in attendance during the past 12 months.

After the first year of the Alliance, MUCC noted a slight increase in the number of calls to the Utility Notification Center from contractors requesting information on the location of utility lines. OSHA and MUCC plan to increase their outreach efforts in order to reach more contractors through training, the OSHA Region VIII, Billings Area Office newsletter, speeches and other available methods. In the event that a contractor does strike an underground utility line, the MUCC and the Billings Area Office will work together to determine the cause.

According to David DiTommaso, Area Director at the OSHA Region VIII, Billings Area Office, "OSHA's Billings Office is more than happy with the results of its Alliance with MUCC. Our Alliance with MUCC was our first Alliance, and it has proved beneficial to both the Council and us. For example, Mr. Bud Criner of the MUCC, conducted a well received training session for our compliance staff which improved our understanding of the "Call before You Dig" process here in Montana. We are well pleased with the Alliance."

Both parties are very interested in promoting MUCC, the OSHA rules and regulations and the Montana state laws about trenching and excavation near underground utility lines. OSHA and MUCC will continue to conduct outreach and training sessions to contractors throughout Montana. In addition, MUCC will develop outreach materials defining the "Call Before You Dig" campaign to be distributed to contractors and associations. This Alliance was extended for one year and indications are that it will be renewed again in October 2005.

For additional information about this Alliance and it activities, please contact Bill Wright, OSHA Region VIII.

-- As of June 2005

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Region VIII Alliance Providing Training and Developing Safety Programs for Electrical Contractors

Providing Colorado workers in the electrical construction and maintenance industry with safety and health information and training is the primary goal of the Alliance the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) Region VIII Denver and Englewood Area Offices signed with Kimsey-Guarantee Electrical Contracting, the Denver Electrical Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee, and the Mountain States Line Constructors Apprenticeship and Training Committee. Through the agreement signed on October 13, 2003, the groups are working together to reduce and prevent workers' exposure to electrocution, fall, ergonomic, and motor vehicle hazards.

Training events that the Alliance has sponsored include the presentation of OSHA's 30-hour course focused on the National Fire Protection Association 70E standard on seven occasions in 2004 at the Denver Joint Electrical Apprenticeship Training Center. It covered many issues such as work practices, maintenance, special equipment requirements, and safe installations. Nearly 300 attendees participated in the course including Kimsey employees, journeyman electricians and Denver area apprentices registered with the Denver Electrical Joint Apprenticeship and Training Program.

In addition, as part of the Alliance Kimsey's Colorado employees that operate company vehicles have completed the National Safety Council's defensive driving course. The employees also learned about the changes to the trucking industry's hours-of-service rule from the Colorado State Patrol.

Through the Alliance, Kimsey created near miss reporting system which has been adopted by the Rocky Mountain Chapter of the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA). Kimsey employees now report circumstances where an electrical-related accident or injury almost occurred, but did not happen. The NECA chapter's Safety Action Committee reviews and reports to members with quarterly emails of the Near Miss Information Program.

Larrel Scott, Director of Industry Services for NECA Rocky Mountain Chapter said, "What happens then is that our member companies use the near miss information to educate employees about safety. They conduct safety meetings and hold tool box talks to create an atmosphere of open discussion around every day safety issues."

The training courses and programs developed through the Alliance have been successful in helping to reduce Kimsey's injury rate by more than 25% percent. In 2004, the American Subcontractors Association recognized Kimsey's safety achievements and awarded the company two prestigious awards; "Excellence in Safety for 2004" and "Best Overall Safety Program."

For additional information on this Region VIII Alliance, please contact Bill Wright the Denver, Colorado OSHA Regional Office.

-- As of March 2005.

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Pueblo Community College (PCC) hosts the first Excavation Awareness Seminar as part of its Alliance with OSHA's Englewood Area Office

Colorado Compliance Assistance Specialists Megan Meagher (Denver Area Office) and George Flynn (Englewood Area Office) recently launched an Excavation Awareness Seminar Series designed to educate contractors on the hazards associated with trenching and excavating. By involving a diverse network of co-sponsors, more than 500 workers have been trained in basic excavation hazard awareness.

One such collaborative effort involved the Pueblo Community College (PCC). PCC had entered into an agreement with the OSHA Englewood Area Office in October 2003, to establish an Alliance to promote safety and healthful working conditions for all workers, including Spanish-speaking workers, in the southeastern and southwestern regions of Colorado. As part of this Alliance, the Pueblo Community College hosted the first Excavation Awareness Seminar. This event was co-sponsored by trench shoring vendors: Trench Shoring Services, United Rentals Trench Safety, and Wylaco Supply Company. Thanks to the generous contribution of time and resources on the part of the college and the vendors, the seminar was offered free of charge and took place on June 18, 2004, on the campus of PCC. This seminar was 4-hours long and was offered twice during that day. There were 150 attendees at this event.

Similar seminars were also offered free of charge in Denver, Greeley and Loveland, Colorado, during the last week of August 2004, thanks to the cooperative support of Xcel Energy and the City of Greeley, as well the vendors listed above. Total attendance for these events exceeded 350.

The vendors provided the training materials and conducted the training. Classroom topics included an excavation standard overview and soil classification/sloping and benching options. Following the 3-hour classroom training sessions, seminar attendees were led to a demonstration trench located nearby. The trench shoring vendors coordinated the digging of the trench and installed an array of protective systems throughout the excavation. The trench was sloped to various angles and spoil piles were located both properly and improperly. The purpose of the field portion of the training was twofold to provide visual reinforcement of concepts introduced in the classroom and to allow seminar participants to observe Compliance Safety and Health Officers (CSHOs) conducting mock inspections. During this portion of the seminars, CSHOs pointed out many available protective system options, led participants in soil testing procedures, discussed commonly observed violations, and answered questions. Seminar participants expressed their satisfaction with the benefits of this kind of demonstration and the "hands-on" exposure to the trench inspection process.

For additional information about this Alliance and it activities, please contact Bill Wright, OSHA Region VIII.

-- As of October 2004.

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