Regulations (Preambles to Final Rules) - Table of Contents Regulations (Preambles to Final Rules) - Table of Contents
• Record Type: Personal Protective Equipment for Shipyard Employment
• Section: 2
• Title: Section 2 - Workplace Hazards

II. Workplace Hazards

OSHA has determined that employees in shipyards are exposed to a significant risk of injury from hazards that can be mitigated by the use of suitable personal protective equipment. OSHA has also concluded that compliance with the final standard will substantially reduce employee exposure to PPE-related hazards.

The shipyard industry has had one of the highest rates of injuries of any industry for many years. In 1992, the shipyard industry, SIC 3731, had an injury rate of 34.2 per 100 full-time employees ("Occupational Injuries and Illnesses: Counts, Rates, and Characteristics, 1992," published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics in April, 1995). Approximately half of these injuries were severe enough to result in lost time from work. These numbers mean that a shipyard employee has about a 1 in 3 chance (34 percent) of experiencing an injury at work annually and a 1 in 10 chance every year of being injured seriously enough to require time away from work to recuperate.

In comparison, the average annual risk of injury for all employees in the United States was about 9 per 100 full-time employees in 1992; for the manufacturing sector of the economy, the annual injury rate was about 11 per 100 full-time employees.

Table 1 presents estimates of lost-workday injuries by body part based on 1992 Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data. These estimates are consistent with injury data from a Department of Transportation Maritime Administration survey and the Agency's analysis of OSHA 200 Forms (discussed further in the Benefits section of the summary of the Economic Analysis, presented later in this Preamble). Table 2 presents BLS lost workday injury data by nature of injury.


      Table 1. -- BLS Estimates of Shipyard injuries involving
                  Lost Workdays by Body Part
____________________________________________________________________
                            |          |             |
                            |  Number  | Number of   |
      Body part             | of 1992  |extrapolated |  Percent (%)
                            | injuries |   1994      |
                            |   (a)    |injuries (b) |
____________________________|__________|_____________|______________
                            |          |             |
Head, unspecified.......... |       73 |          63 |       0.6
Ear(s)..................... |        0 |           0 |       0.0
Eyes(s).................... |    1,080 |         925 |       9.4
Face....................... |       51 |          44 |       0.4
Scalp...................... |       91 |          78 |       0.8
Neck....................... |      350 |         300 |       3.0
Arm(s) unspecified......... |       49 |          42 |       0.4
Elbow...................... |      265 |         227 |       2.3
Forearm.................... |      128 |         110 |       1.1
Wrist...................... |      478 |         409 |       4.1
Hand(s).................... |      508 |         435 |       4.4
Finger(s).................. |      720 |         617 |       6.2
Upper extremities, multiple |        0 |           0 |       0.0
Trunk, unspecified......... |        0 |           0 |       0.0
Abdomen.................... |       88 |          75 |       0.8
Back, unspecified.......... |      954 |         817 |       8.3
Back, lumbar............... |    1,198 |       1,026 |      10.4
Back, thoracic............. |      168 |         144 |       1.5
Chest...................... |      289 |         247 |       2.5
Hip........................ |      306 |         262 |       2.7
Shoulder(s)................ |      601 |         515 |       5.2
Trunk, multiple parts...... |        0 |           0 |       0.0
Lower extremities,          |          |             |
  unspecified.............. |        0 |           0 |       0.0
Leg(s), unspecified........ |       59 |          51 |       0.5
Thighs..................... |       89 |          76 |       0.8
Knee(s).................... |    1,073 |         919 |       9.3
Lower leg(s)............... |      123 |         105 |       1.1
Leg(s), multiple........... |        0 |           0 |       0.0
Ankle(s)................... |      624 |         534 |       5.4
Foot/feet.................. |      488 |         418 |       4.2
Toe(s)..................... |      123 |         105 |       1.1
Lower extremities, multiple |        0 |           0 |       0.0
Multiple body parts........ |      674 |         577 |       5.8
Circulatory system......... |        0 |           0 |       0.0
Digestive system........... |        0 |           0 |       0.0
Excretory system........... |        0 |           0 |       0.0
Nervous system............. |        0 |           0 |       0.0
Respiratory system......... |        0 |           0 |       0.0
Body parts, NEC............ |      163 |         140 |       1.4
Not identified by body part |      720 |         617 |       6.2
                            |__________|_____________|______________
                            |          |             |
    Total.................. |   11,533 |       9,876 |     100.0
____________________________|__________|_____________|______________


(a) Bureau of Labor Statistics. Survey of Occupational injuries and illnesses, 1 (b) Extrapolation based on decline in shipyard employment of 14.4 percent between 1992 and 1994.


            Table 2. -- BLS Estimates of Shipyard Injuries Involving
                        Lost Workdays, by Nature of Injury

____________________________________________________________________
                            |          |             |
                            |  Number  | Number of   |
  Nature of injury          | of 1992  |extrapolated |  Percent (%)
                            | injuries |   1994      |
                            |   (a)    |injuries (b) |
____________________________|__________|_____________|______________
                            |          |             |
Amputation................. |        0 |           0 |      0.0
Burn (heat)................ |      410 |         351 |      3.6
Burn (chemical)............ |       80 |          69 |      0.7
Concussion................. |        0 |           0 |      0.0
Infective/parasitic disease |       NA |          NA |       NA
Contusion/bruise........... |    2,085 |       1,785 |     18.1
Cut/laceration/puncture.... |      622 |         533 |      5.4
Dermatitis................. |        0 |           0 |      0.0
Dislocation, unspecified... |       88 |          75 |      0.8
Electric shock............. |        0 |           0 |      0.0
Fracture................... |      558 |         478 |      4.8
Low temperature exposure... |       NA |          NA |       NA
Hearing loss or impairment. |        0 |           0 |      0.0
Inflammation of joints..... |      114 |          98 |      1.0
Poisoning.................. |      114 |          98 |      1.0
Radiation effects.......... |      213 |         182 |      1.8
Scratches/abrasions........ |      728 |         623 |      6.3
Sprains/strains,            |          |             |
  unspecified.............. |    5,044 |       4,319 |     43.7
Torn ligaments............. |       NA |          NA |       NA
Sprains/strains, NEC....... |       NA |          NA |       NA
Multiple injuries.......... |      308 |         264 |      2.7
Circulatory system          |          |             |
 condition................. |        0 |           0 |      0.0
Eye diseases............... |        0 |           0 |      0.0
Nervous system condition... |      255 |         218 |      2.2
Respiratory system          |          |             |
  condition................ |        0 |           0 |      0.0
Ill-defined condition...... |        0 |           0 |      0.0
Other injury, NEC.......... |      216 |         185 |      1.9
Not identified by nature... |      698 |         598 |      6.1
    Total.................. |   11,533 |       9,876 |    100.0
____________________________|__________|_____________|______________
  (a) Bureau of Labor Statistics. Survey of Occupational Injuries and
Illnesses, 19
  (b) Extrapolation based on decline in shipyard employment of 14.4
percent between 1992 and 1994.
  NA: Not applicable. Nature of injury category not included in BLS
tabulations.


Shipyard employment typically involves fabrication and repair of large steel plates, beams, and pipes as well as painting and coating operations and other outfitting activities such as electrical work, ventilation and sheet metal work, and work on propulsion systems. Welding is a common production technology, requiring grinding and chipping of welds and accounting for many eye injuries. Employees also frequently work in awkward positions, out-of-doors throughout the year, on scaffolds, and in enclosed or confined spaces. The shipyard industry's relatively high employment turnover rate contributes to the high rates of injuries, because newly hired workers tend to be less well trained and have a higher frequency of accidents.

The Agency has concluded that PPE-related hazards pose a significant risk of serious injury to shipyard employees, and that compliance with the PPE standard is needed to substantially reduce that risk. The Agency has estimated that compliance with the final PPE regulation will significantly reduce the likelihood of an injury -- from 34.2 to 21 per 100 full-time employees per year.

For a full discussion of the benefits of the final standard see the summary of the Economic Analysis presented below in this preamble or the full Economic Analysis, which is in the docket.

[61 FR 26321, May 24, 1996]

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