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Region 6 News Release:   OSHA-04-1059-DAL
Thursday, June 10, 2004
Contact: Diana Petterson or Elizabeth Todd
Phone: (214) 767-4776, ext. 222 or 221


OSHA Special Emphasis Program Aims to Improve Worker Safety in Arkansas' Residential Construction Industry

DALLAS -- The Little Rock area office of the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is making special efforts this summer to improve job safety and health in the residential construction industry in Arkansas.

"An important objective of this special emphasis program is to reduce work-related fatalities, injuries and illnesses among the large Hispanic workforce in the state's residential construction industry," said John Miles, OSHA regional administrator in Dallas.

OSHA's Little Rock office will focus their resources on local factors that have contributed to serious injuries or fatalities. Other program objectives include motivating workers and employers to emphasize safety; encouraging the involvement of employees in analyzing and eliminating hazards; and establishing sound safety and health programs in English and Spanish that cover the full range of work practices used by local companies.

Construction has long been recognized as a high-hazard industry. OSHA usually focuses its resources on larger commercial projects, and inspects residential construction sites mainly in response to workers' complaints or accidents. From October 1999 through July 2003, there were 458 construction-related fatalities in OSHA's five-state Dallas region. About 13 percent (59) involved residential work. The region covers Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas.

"Residential construction worksites usually consist of small employers who may be less familiar with OSHA regulations," said Miles. "This program will include an outreach component to better educate small employers."

In addition to Arkansas, the residential emphasis program will be implemented as needed in Texas, Louisiana and Oklahoma. New Mexico administers it own occupational safety and health program.

For more information about the program in Arkansas, contact the OSHA Little Rock area office at (501) 324-6291.

Last year, the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration conducted almost 23,000 inspections in the construction industry, an increase of seven percent over FY 2002 levels. 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 improvement in workplace safety and health. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.
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U.S. Labor Department releases are accessible on the Internet at . 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 at (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.


Archive Notice - OSHA Archive

NOTICE: This is an OSHA Archive Document, and may no longer represent OSHA Policy. It is presented here as historical content, for research and review purposes only.

OSHA News Release - (Archived) Table of Contents

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