OSHA moves National Safety Stand-Down to September

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Photo: OSHA

Washington — OSHA has rescheduled the seventh annual National Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction for Sept. 14-18.

The event initially was set for May 4-8, but was postponed March 27 over concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic. It now will coincide with Construction Safety Week, which also was recently rescheduled for Sept. 14-18.

Speaking during a July 2 webinar hosted by CPWR – The Center for Construction Research and Training, OSHA Directorate of Construction Director Scott Ketcham said the agency and its partners in the stand-down – NIOSH and CPWR – “are going to be working on getting information out to you as stakeholders on how to do a falls stand-down in a COVID environment” that includes physical distancing and other precautionary measures.

Falls are among the leading causes of fatal workplace injuries among construction workers. OSHA “encourages employers to remain vigilant and to use all available resources to enhance worker safety.” According to the agency, millions of construction workers have participated in the campaign since the stand-down began in 2014, with events having occurred in all 50 states and internationally.

Stand-down to prevent struck-by incidents goes virtual

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Photo: CPWR

Washington — Prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic, organizers of the inaugural National Stand-Down to Prevent Struck-By Incidents say the event will be virtual.

Set to take place April 20, the stand-down is a collaborative effort led by NIOSH’s National Occupational Research Agenda Construction Sector Council. Other partners include OSHA’s Work Zone Safety Alliance, the executive committee for National Work Zone Awareness Week, the American Road and Transportation Builders Association, and CPWR – The Center for Construction Research and Training.

During the event – slated to take place in conjunction with National Work Zone Awareness Week (April 20-24) – employers are encouraged to engage workers online by downloading, sharing and discussing resources such as toolbox talks, infographics, training documents and videos.

“While most of the construction industry recognizes falls as the No. 1 cause of deaths and injuries, struck-by incidents are the primary hazard for roadway and transportation construction, which is the sector we represent,” Bradley Sant, ARTBA’s senior vice president for safety and education, wrote in an email to Safety+Health.

Work on the event began in late 2018, and plans for in-person events were nearly finalized when the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Members of the NORA Construction Sector Council’s struck-by workgroup decided to move forward with a virtual event because a number of workers are still on the job.

“Inasmuch as this type of construction has been deemed ‘essential work’ by most state and federal government leaders, we knew our workers will continue to be exposed to struck-by incidents,” Sant wrote in the email, “and we thought it would be important to move forward and launch the planned annual event.”

CPWR encourages employers to “use creative ways to hold stand-down events within your own company that will not put you or your employees at risk of exposure to COVID-19.”

OSHA postpones National Safety Stand-Down

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Photo: OSHA

Washington — OSHA has postponed the seventh annual National Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The event – initially slated for May 4-8 – is expected to be rescheduled for this summer, the agency states in a March 27 press release.

Falls are the No. 1 cause of fatal workplace injuries among construction workers. OSHA “encourages employers to remain vigilant and to use all available resources to enhance worker safety.”