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Region 7 News Release: OSHA/ 05-273-KAN
Date: Friday, February 11, 2005
Contact: Norma J. Conrad
To Protect Roofing and Siding Workers in Illinois and Missouri
Kansas City, Mo -- The U.S. Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently entered into a partnership with the Roofing and Siding Contractors Association of Greater St. Louis, the Eastern Missouri Laborers District Council, and the Carpenters District Council of Greater St. Louis to ensure the safety and health of construction workers in Illinois and Missouri.
The partnership with OSHA area offices in St. Louis and Kansas City, Mo., and Peoria, Ill., will focus on reducing or eliminating hazards in roofing, an industry with high injury, illness, and fatality rates. The partnership will strive to reduce and prevent the top causes of fatalities identified by OSHA: falls, electrical hazards, moving equipment or machinery, and workers who are caught between equipment.
OSHA health and safety partnerships are part of U.S. Labor Secretary Elaine L. Chao's ongoing efforts to improve health and safety for workers through cooperative partnerships.
The goal of the partnership is to reduce illnesses and injuries by 10 percent by the end of the third year.
One of the aims of the agreement is to develop contractors with effective safety and health programs that can serve as models mentor smaller companies.
Under the terms of the partnership, contractors must have effective written safety and health programs that have been confirmed by on-site inspections by their organization. The safety and health programs must incorporate management leadership, employee involvement, worksite analysis, hazard prevention and control, and proper training. Contractors must require fall protection when employees are performing work that is in excess of six feet above the lower level. The partnership will also require participants to conduct regular job site inspections.
Participation in the partnership is voluntary but provides incentives for those who participate. OSHA will not conduct programmed inspections of partnership members for up to 12 months once an OSHA on-site verification inspection has been successfully completed. OSHA will still conduct inspections in response to reports of imminent danger, an employee complaint, a fatality, or catastrophic accident. OSHA will not cite contractors for other-than-serious violations that are abated during an inspection, and will reduce penalties for other violations.
Employers are responsible for providing a safe and healthful workplace for their employees. 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.
U.S. Labor Department news releases are accessible on the Internet at www.dol.gov/ebsa. The information in this release will be made available in alternative format upon request (large print, Braille, audio tape or disc) from the COAST office. Please specify which news release when placing your request. Call 202-693-7773 or TTY 202-693-7755.
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