OSHA News Release - (Archived) Table of Contents|
TRADE NEWS RELEASE
Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2002
Contact: Bill Wright
Phone: (202) 693-1999
Fire Protection in Shipyard Employment
Proposal Follows Negotiated Rulemaking Advisory Committee Recommendation
WASHINGTON -- Thousands of shipyard workers will benefit from safeguards afforded by a proposed standard geared to protecting them from the hazards of fire, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration announced today in a Federal Register notice.
The proposal closely follows the recommendation of a Negotiated Rulemaking Advisory Committee with representatives from industry, trade associations, labor organizations, the International Association of Firefighters, the National Fire Protection Association, and the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health. Covering an estimated 98,000 shipyard workers at more than 700 establishments involved in shipbuilding, ship conversion, ship repairing or shipbreaking, the standard would also provide safety measures for workers in fire brigades and shipyard fire departments. "The basic tasks of shipyard workers - welding, grinding, or cutting metal often in confined spaces - expose them to the risk of fire from many combustible sources," said OSHA Administrator John Henshaw. "And the very act of firefighting aboard vessels is considerably different from structural firefighting. A clear standard for fire protection on vessels will lead to better protection for workers."
That clarification was molded into a single proposed standard by combining relevant information from numerous sources, including OSHA's general industry standard on fire protection, U.S. Coast Guard standards, and guidelines developed by professional associations such as the National Fire Protection Association and the Marine Chemists' Association.
OSHA's proposal addresses fire safety plans, training, multi-employer worksites, hot work precautions, fire watches, fire response, employee evacuation, medical requirements for shipyard fire response, hazards of fixed extinguishing systems aboard vessels, land-side fire protection systems, and training. The proposal also includes a model fire safety plan.
Comments must be submitted by Mar. 10, 2003. To submit comments by regular mail, express delivery, hand delivery or messenger service, send three copies and attachments to the OSHA Docket Office, Docket No. S-051, Room N2625, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Ave., NW, Washington, D.C. 20210. You may also fax comments (10 pages or fewer) to OSHA's Docket Office at (202) 693-1648. Include the docket number in your comments. Finally, comments may be submitted electronically through the Internet at http://ecomments.osha.gov. Further information on submitting comments can be obtained by calling the Docket Office at (202) 693-2350.
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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