The thirteenth meeting of the OSHA Maritime Advisory Committee for Occupational Safety and Health (MACOSH) was called to order at 9:00 a.m. on November 17, 1999 in Annapolis, MD. An electronic transcript of the full meeting (November 17-18, 1999) was sent separately to you for your review and record. With some minor changes recommended by Steve Morris, the Executive Summary and the transcript of the June 1999 meeting were approved unanimously. Larry reed and Larry Liberatore began the meeting by introducing MACOSH’s newest member, Mr. Jeff Vigna who is the labor representative from the International Longshoring and Warehouse Union. They then reviewed the agenda for the current meeting.
Ms. Marthe Kent, who is the Director of the OSHA Directorate of Safety Standards, gave an update on the OSHA safety and health standards program. She mentioned that diesel exhaust was not currently on the OSHA regulatory calendar. She also mentioned that OSHA was developing standards via ten regulatory teams, one of which is the maritime team. The economist for the team is Mr. Adrian Coursey. Although requested by MACOSH at the June meeting, Marthe mentioned that it would not have been possible for a MACOSH subgroup to have met with the OSHA maritime team to have discussed relevant standards activities including the draft safety and health program standard because of rotating team leadership. She noted that OSHA would interact closely with MACOSH via conference calls (e.g., one was held on 10/12 to discuss standards relative to the maritime industries), face-to-face meetings in Washington, DC, and regular attendance at MACOSH meetings. Marthe gave an update on the following OSHA standards:
Richard Fairfax, Director of the OSHA Directorate of Compliance Programs, gave an update on OSHA compliance programs. Richard discussed several topics including the OSHA Mentoring/Training Program, OSHA’s Strategic Plan (including the Tool Bag Directive), Container Top Safety for Two Stacked Containers, Significant Compliance Cases at Bath Iron Works, Ingalls Shipyard, and Avondale Shipyard. Richard also discussed two separate lock-out/tag-out fatalities at separate U.S. Navy bases. He summarized the shipbreaking memorandum of understanding among the Navy, MARAD, EPA, Coast Guard, and OSHA that establishes a mechanism for sharing information and coordinating activities among the participating agencies on shipbreaking issues. Richard summarized OSHA maritime inspection data for FY 1999, including the most recently cited standards (i.e., respiratory protection, hazard communication, electrical, and guarding deck openings and edges).
In the afternoon session, Steve Hudock (NIOSH ergonomist) and Karl Siegfried (ergonomic consultant formerly with Bath Iron Works) presented an update on the NIOSH/Maritech ergonomics study to the full committee. Steve also mentioned the news that the National Maritime Safety Association, at their annual Board of Director’s meeting in November 1999, had agreed to give management support to a longshoring component to this study. Subsequently, the full committee voted unanimously to expand the scope of the ergonomics study from shipyards to the entire maritime industry by including longshoring.
The committee them split into breakout groups to discuss the noted agenda items, including finalizing goals and accomplishments for the re-chartering of MACOSH. The shipyard group heard a presentation on the Shipyard Advisor from Earl Cook from OSHA, Salt Lake City. They also heard from Ken Hunt about draft report on safety and health hazards in the shipyard industry and guidelines for their abatement. The rest of the shipyard break-out session was spent finalizing plans for re-chartering. The longshoring breakout group spent entire time finalizing goals and accomplishments for re-chartering. After reconvening later in the afternoon, the full committee agreed that Larry Reed should prepare a letter to be sent to Charles Jeffress that presents the list of significant MACOSH accomplishments and goals for the re-chartering package. [Note: After full committee review by e-mail, this letter was finalized and sent to OSHA on December 20, 1999 for inclusion in the re-chartering package].
The full committee reconvened on November 18, 1999 at 8:30 a.m. to discuss final plans for the re-chartering package. After a brief introduction and thanks from the committee for MACOSH support, Charles Jeffress presented an overview of relevant OSHA activities. He thanked the committee for keeping OSHA staff updated on maritime issues and promised to support the re-chartering of MACOSH. Mr. Jeffress mentioned that the House version of the FY 2000 OSHA budget call for a modest increase. He said the draft OSHA ergonomics standard would soon be published for comment in the Federal Register. He also reassured the committee that our comments would be reflected in the soon-to-be published draft Safety and Health Program standard. Mr. Jeffress discussed the following items: 1.) OSHA strategic plan; 2.) OSHA personnel changes in the regional offices; 3.) the need for a powered industrial trucks standard in the longshoring industry (e.g., he stated there were 11 PIT-related deaths last year; and the need to finish the shipyard standards that SESAC prepared several years ago). A period of Qs and As followed from the committee and the audience.
Following Mr. Jeffress’ presentation, the full committee heard an update on partnerships and mentoring in the maritime industry from Ms. Jennifer Miller of the OSHA Training Institute. She discussed the 2-week maritime standards course that helps train compliance officers. She solicited MACOSH’s advice on what needs to be in this training. As part of the total training and education initiative, the full committee agreed to create a subcommittee with longshoring and shipyard representatives. The purpose of this subcommittee would be to develop a plan that will assist OSHA in providing improved training and outreach services in the maritime industry. [Note: A subcommittee consisting of John McNeill, Jeff Vigna, Chet Matthews, Chico McGill and Pete Schmidt from MACOSH, and other interested parties including Mark MacDonald, Bob Baron, Jim Paulson, Chuck Rupy, George Potts, Frank Strasheim, Tom Pope, Amy Argo, Jennifer Miller, Susan Sherman, Alan Trackner, and Larry Liberatore met in San Francisco, CA on January 5, 2000 to begin work on this important issue.]
Next, the full committee received an update on the safety and health program activity from Jim Thornton, Chico McGill, and David Wallis (OSHA). They mentioned that as conceived, the standard would apply to the entire maritime industry. Chico and Jim mentioned they though that all shipyards should be covered by this rule regardless of size. They also said that OSHA staff were very receptive to incorporating MACOSH recommendations including: 1.) multi-employer work-sites; 2.) small employers; 3.) longshoring and shipyard examples into the preamble of the standard. OSHA will also add a maritime checklist after revisions by Chico. The last morning session was a presentation and demonstration of the OSHA Website by Wendy Johnson. She mentioned that when finalized the OSHA Website will have a direct link to maritime issues and MACOSH.
Following lunch, the full committee heard an update on shipbreaking from Captain Gary Hall from the U.S. Navy. Captain Hall is the manager of the Navy shipbreaking program. He mentioned that the Navy is currently conducting a pilot project for breaking 4 warships (two on the east coast and two on the west coast). Based on the successful outcome of this feasibility project, the Navy plans to break a total of fifty-one ships. After some discussion on its role, the committee offered its assistance to help make this shipbreaking process as safe as possible. To the end, Captain Hall agreed to meet with the committee on an as-needed basis.
The full committee then discussed plans for the next meeting to be held in Houston, TX on February 20 through March 1, 2000. The committee scheduled a conference call for February 10, 2000 to finalize the agenda for the March meeting.
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