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More than 900 ABC members joined ABC in submitting comments to OSHA requesting it withdraw a proposed rule that would require employers to electronically submit detailed injury and illness records to the agency that would be made available to the public through an online database.

Under the proposal, OSHA would require establishments (worksites) with 20 or more employees at any time in the previous calendar year in construction and other high-hazard industries to submit their injury and illness records (Forms 300, 300A and 301) annually. The proposal also would require quarterly submission for establishments with 250 or more employees at any time in the previous calendar year.

More than 600 ABC members joined ABC in submitting comments to OSHA requesting it withdraw its proposed rule that would drastically lower the permissible exposure limit (PEL) of crystalline silica for the construction industry. The proposal also would require contractors to implement engineering controls and follow several “ancillary” provisions, such as exposure monitoring, medical surveillance and the establishment of regulated areas. 

ABC Feb. 11 congratulated the winners of the 24th annual Excellence in Construction Awards– the industry’s leading competition, where the top construction projects and the firms that displayed exemplary commitment to safety and diversity in 2013 were recognized during the awards celebration at the Grand Wailea in Maui, Hawaii.

ABC is reminding its contractor member firms that 2013 Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Form 300A work-related injury and illness log summaries must be posted in a visible spot on all construction sites Feb. 1 through April 30. 

OSHA held an informal public meeting Jan. 9 and 10 in Washington, D.C., to receive public feedback on a proposed rule that would require employers to submit to the agency electronically detailed injury and illness data that would be made publicly available through an online database. Employer groups, including the ABC-led Coalition for Workplace Safety (CWS), took the opportunity to express serious concerns over OSHA’s proposal. 

The 2014 Safety Training Evaluation Process (STEP) applications are now available and have been mailed to all ABC chapters and contractor members. 

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) December 12 released the Spanish version of their ladder safety smartphone app which is designed to improve the safety of extension ladders by using visual and audio signals to make it easier for workers to check the angle of the ladder and offers useful tips for using extension ladders safely. When a user’s phone is set to Spanish language, the Spanish version of the app will install when downloaded.

According to OSHA’s latest semiannual regulatory agenda, released Nov. 27, the agency plans to issue a final rule on confined spaces and a notice of proposed rulemaking on injury and illness prevention programs (I2P2) in 2014. The regulatory agenda lists the priorities of the administration and the rulemakings they expect to release this year; however, OSHA is not required to adhere to the timeline.

The Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released a report Nov. 7 showing a decrease in on-the-job injury and illness rates for the construction industry in 2012. The total number of recordable cases declined to 3.6 incidents for every 100 full time employees (FTEs), down from 3.8 in 2011. 

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