Oct. 4, 2007
Contact: Dan Fuqua Michael Wald
Phone: (404) 562-2078 (404) 562-2076
ATLANTA -- The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) will conduct no-notice "Swept Up in Safety Weeks" during its fiscal year 2008 campaign to curb construction-related fatalities in the Southeast.
In the past, such unannounced safety weeks have been successful in reducing construction-related fatalities in the Southeast. OSHA compliance officers will continue to focus their enforcement efforts on construction sites in the region, which includes Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee.
OSHA field activities are designed to identify and eliminate safety and health hazards at construction sites, thereby reducing the numbers of injuries and fatalities resulting from the four leading causes of accidents: falls, struck-by/crushing events, electrocutions and caught-in-between events. During the fiscal year 2007 "Swept Up in Safety Weeks" campaign period, agency compliance officers conducted immediate inspections when unsafe working conditions were observed at construction sites. Compliance officers also entered worksites to provide outreach and training and to encourage employers to continue their good work.
"OSHA's goal this year is to continue increasing employers' awareness about eliminating hazards that lead to employee fatalities," said Cindy Coe, OSHA's regional administrator in Atlanta. "The increased presence of our field compliance officers and conducting immediate inspections when they observed unsafe scaffolds, fall risks, trenches and other construction hazards led to a reduction in worksite fatalities."
OSHA's fiscal year 2007 "Swept Up in Safety Weeks" campaign helped reduce fatalities at construction sites overseen by federal OSHA offices by 10.4 percent compared to fiscal year 2006. During the four designated safety weeks in fiscal year 2007, OSHA conducted 2,086 compliance inspections, while conducting 1,294 on-site interventions where no inspection was performed.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to assure the safety and health of America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards; providing training, outreach and education; establishing partnerships; and encouraging continual process improvement in workplace safety and health. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.
U.S. Department of Labor releases are accessible on the Internet at www.dol.gov. The information in this news release will be made available in alternate format upon request (large print, Braille, audio tape or disc) from the COAST office. Please specify which news release when placing your request. Call (202) 693-7765 or TTY (202) 693-7755. The U.S. Department of Labor is committed to providing America's employers and employees with easy access to understandable information on how to comply with its laws and regulations. For more information, please visit www.dol.gov/compliance.