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In May 2009, The Associated General Contractors (AGC) of Greater Milwaukee and Wisconsin Onsite Consultation Program (WisCon) formed an OSHA Strategic Partnership (OSP) to help reduce occupational-related fatalities and serious injuries within the construction industry, effectively implement all facets of jobsite safety, and achieve self-compliance through cooperative efforts. Fifteen employer participants participate in the OSP which covers approximately 800 workers. The planned end date of the OSP is May 2012.
Specific goals of the OSP are to: promote and recognize those jobsites controlled by contractors who have demonstrated an effective safety and health program, establish a cooperative effort in ensuring safety and maintaining an open line of communication between OSHA and contractors on the worksites, utilize OSHA resources and innovation in safety management, and encourage more participation in the safety process from the construction community.
Partnership Increase Safety and Health Training in the Construction Industry
Results from the OSP's latest annual evaluation show that the OSP offered 51 training sessions consisting of over 4,100 hours to 1,125 employees, supervisors, and managers. One AGC Safety Day was held with presentations made by OSHA staff and other stakeholders. There were 130 participants who attended the event. Eight Safety Leader sessions were conducted with a training component for the members and the Milwaukee Compliance Assistance Specialist (CAS) participated during several of the sessions. In addition, there was a monthly “Safety Leaders Forum” where 40 safety personnel and trades people participated. Six OSHA 10-hour and three 30-hour sessions were conducted by AGC safety personnel for AGC members. In addition, 12 rigging classes, 13 signalperson classes, and five Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) classes were also offered.
Partnership's Injury and Illness Rates Lower than National Average - Days Away, Restricted, and Transferred (DART) Rate and Total Case Incident Rate (TCIR)
All 15 of the participating employers improved, developed, and/or implemented an effective safety and health program. During the second year of the OSP, participants achieved an aggregated Total Case Incident Rate (TCIR) that was 42 percent below the 2009 Bureau of Labor Statistics' (BLS) national average for the construction industry; and a Days Away, Restricted, and Transferred (DART) rate 76 percent below. The below table presents the OSP's injury and illness data achieved during the first two years of the OSP:
Benefits of the Partnership
Since implementation began two years ago, there have been many benefits resulting from the OSP. Examples of such benefits include increased safety and health awareness; improved relationships with OSHA, employers, employees, and their unions; and an increased number of OSP participants. The Milwaukee Building and Construction Trades (AFL-CIO) are also very much in support of the OSP. The OSP participants provide regular support and additional training (in safety and health as well as innovations in the trades) to tradespersons. The OSP participants readily provide this over and above the norm for the construction industry.
The common objectives of the OSP are to provide a safe and healthful work environment for workers from the construction industry; and to help prevent serious accidents and fatalities within the industry through increased training, implementation of best work practices, enhanced safety and health programs, and compliance with applicable OSHA standards and regulations. By utilizing partners' skills, knowledge, and areas of expertise, OSP participants expect to reduce construction workers' exposure to hazards, and reduce injuries and fatalities at construction project sites across Wisconsin. Increased communication and mutual respect between partners are additional benefits expected as a result of this cooperative and voluntary initiative.
Origin: Chicago Regional Office (Region V), Milwaukee Area Office
Industry (NAICS Code): Construction (2362)