OSHA Exploring Possible Update to Lockout/Tagout Standard

The lockout/tagout (LOTO) procedure has been one of the critical elements of electrical safety training on construction sites for a decade.  Generally, it’s pretty simple: if you need to work on an energized circuit or piece of equipment, shut down the breaker, put a lock on it so no one can turn it back on, and place a tag on it with your information. OSHA is considering updating the standard now and is currently requesting information from interested parties.

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May 6 Kicks Off 2019 Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction

via OSHA

via OSHA

Every year since 2012, OSHA, NIOSH, and CPWR have teamed up to lead a National Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction.  The campaign helps build awareness through supplying resources, organizing webinars, and other outreach techniques in hopes that it will help save lives in the construction industry.  The 2019 Stand Down has been scheduled for May 6-10.

In preparation for the campaign, the organizations involved have already released plenty of resources to help contractors prepare ahead of time.  The event is, of course, voluntary for all companies to participate in, but OSHA provides several tips for preparing for a successful stand down:

  1. Try to start early

  2. Think about asking your subcontractors, owner, architects, engineers, and others to participate

  3. Consider reviewing your existing fall prevention program

  4. Develop presentations or activities to meet your needs

  5. Decide when to hold the stand-down and how long it will last

  6. Promote the stand-down to your employees or outside the company, if it will be public

  7. Hold your stand-down

  8. Follow up

Free and Public Events

In addition to planning and performing your own stand-down activities and presentations, you can also find free and public events that are scheduled throughout the country through the events page on the National Safety Stand-Down webpage.

Resources

OSHA, NIOSH, and CPWR already have a lot of resources available for download and use on their respective websites. For example:

via NIOSH

via NIOSH

via NIOSH

via NIOSH

Certifications

After the event is over, contractors can visit OSHA’s National Safety Stand-Down page to receive a Certificate of Participation and provide feedback about how their campaign went.  Documenting your training achievements and being recognized is a great way to show that your company is committed to reducing injuries and fatalities on your jobsites.

More Information: National Safety Stand-Down To Prevent Falls in Construction | OSHA

How to Have Better Safety Conversations on the Construction Jobsite

The vast majority of safety related “conversations” that I’ve overheard, or have been a part of, in my career has been mostly a supervisor telling a worker to “knock it off” or something to that effect.  The typical reaction from the worker is to stop doing the unsafe behavior, wait a few minutes when the supervisor has left the area, and then go right back to the way they were doing it originally.

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OSHA Proposes Rule to Alter, Enforce Long Delayed Crane Operator Qualifications

Last November, OSHA issued a final rule that would finally allow them to enforce language, which has been in their standards since 2010, requiring construction crane operators to be formally qualified to operate the equipment.  The first day of enforcement for that rule had been set for November 10, 2018, but the agency has recently proposed a new rule that would pull back some of the initial requirements.

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OSHA: Majority of Companies Failed to Submit OSHA 300A Log Before Deadline

If your company did not electronically submitted its 2016 OSHA 300A injury and illness log to OSHA before December 31, 2017, they could be facing an other-than-serious violation with a maximum penalty of $12,934. We tried to warn you, and warn you, and warn you again.

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OSHA Sets Enforcement Date for New Beryllium Exposure Limit in Construction

First announced in January 2017, OSHA’s new beryllium exposure limit for construction workers was originally supposed to be in full effect on March 12, 2018.  The administration just announced last Friday that the new enforcement date for the rule will be May 11, 2018.

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Reminder: Employers Must Post 2017 Injury and Illness Summary by February 1

OSHA gives employees many rights in the workplace and employers many responsibilities.  One of those is the employee’s right to see the company’s OSHA 300 Injury and Illness Summary Log and the employer’s responsibility to post it.

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OSHA Battling Against Court Ruling that Invalidated the Multi-Employer Citation Policy

OSHA has long used the language in the OSH act to find and hold multiple employers accountable for the actions of another on construction job sites.  For decades, OSHA would not only cite the employer whose employees were exposed to hazards, but would also cite the employer who was designated the “controlling employer” on-site, which is most often the general contractor.

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