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OSHA Trade Release
U.S. Department of Labor
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
Office of Communications
For Immediate Release
OSHA Trade Release
April 27, 2004
Contact: Bill Wright
Will continue addressing ergonomic issues related to safe handling of checked baggage
WASHINGTON -- An Alliance between the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and a group of 13 airlines and the International Air Transport Section of the National Safety Council (NSC) was renewed recently to continue building on successes realized since the agreement was first launched in November 2002.
OSHA Administrator John Henshaw signed the two-year renewal April 20 for the Airline Industry Alliance that provides participants with more opportunities to continue advancing workplace safety and health.
"I said more than a year ago that I hope we'd have a continuing cooperative relationship with the airline industry that would focus on results for worker safety and health," Henshaw said. "That's precisely what we've seen, and it makes absolute sense to keep that progress moving forward. I'm pleased to renew this Alliance and look forward to more joint efforts that will benefit workers in this important industry."
"Our thirteen member Airline Group recognized and appreciated the synergies which resulted from the first year of our Alliance with OSHA and the National Safety Council," added Barry Brown of Southwest Airlines, speaking on behalf of the Alliance participants. "The support for renewal of the agreement was unanimous, and we're looking forward to building on the initial success in 2004 and beyond."
OSHA and the Airline Group participants have worked together to develop a web-based training tool on "Baggage Handling" as well as a new Safety and Health Topics page for the Airline Industry on OSHA's website. The group also sponsored a workshop during the 2003 National Safety Congress in Chicago called "OSHA/Airline Ergonomic Alliance for Baggage Handling" conducted by OSHA personnel and representatives from Delta Air Lines, American Airlines and Southwest Airlines. Ground Support Magazine, a leading international publication for the aviation ground support industry, published an article on the Alliance in its March 2003 issue.
The renewal calls for a continuing safety and health focus in the areas of ergonomics particularly related to the handling of passenger checked baggage, and calls for the development of an industry training manual for workers involved in handling checked baggage. Additionally, participants will conduct a seminar with airports, manufacturers and other interested parties to share information about ergonomic issues related to airport design.
In addition to OSHA and the NSC's International Air Transport Section, the Alliance consists of the following companies: Air Canada, AirTran Airways, Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, ATA Airlines, America West Airlines, Continental Airlines, Delta Air Lines, JetBlue Airways, Midwest Airlines, Southwest Airlines, United Airlines and US Airways.
OSHA's role is to assure the safety and health of America's workers 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.
This news release text is on the Internet at http://www.osha.gov. Information on this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: (202) 693-1999.
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