June 26, 2014
Contact: Office of Communications
OSHA schedules informal meeting to discuss efforts to improve
agency's Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory Program
WASHINGTON - The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has scheduled an informal stakeholder meeting to gather information on how the agency can increase the effectiveness of its Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory Program. The meeting will be held Oct. 22, 2014, in Washington, D.C.
The meeting will focus on the use of the private sector to improve timeliness and efficiency of the NRTL recognition process, certification marks, factory and field inspections, and other topics if time permits.
In 2012, the Government Accountability Office conducted a study of OSHA's NRTL Program to examine the program's recognition process. GAO published its findings in December 2012 and recommended that OSHA consider various approaches for recognizing NRTLs to include using private accreditation bodies and contractors. GAO also recommended that OSHA review current regulations to identify changes to existing procedures, including better alignment with international standards on accreditation.
The meeting will be held from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Oct. 22, 2014, at the U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20210. For more information, visit OSHA's NRTL Program Improvement Project Web page. Individuals can register to attend the meeting as a presenter, participant or observer. The deadline for registration and submission of comments is July 22, 2014. See the Federal Register notice for registration and submission details.
NRTLs are independent laboratories that meet OSHA's requirements for performing safety testing and certification of products used in the workplace. A NRTL must meet the requirements in the NRTL Program regulations in order to obtain and retain OSHA recognition. Recognition is an acknowledgement by OSHA that a NRTL can perform independent safety testing and certification of specific products covered within the NRTL's scope of recognition. Recognition also allows employers to use products certified by that NRTL to meet those OSHA standards that require approval by a NRTL.
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 ensure these conditions for America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.
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