On Jan. 26, OSHA renewed a strategic partnership with the Electrical Transmission and Distribution Construction Contractors, the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers and other trade associations to reduce injuries, illnesses and deaths among electrical transmission and distribution industry workers, among other goals.
Other organizations joining OSHA in this strategic partnership include Asplundh Tree Expert Co., Edison Electric Institute, Henkels & McCoy Inc., MDU Construction Services Group Inc., MYR Group Inc., National Electrical Contractors Association, Pike Electric Inc. and Quanta Services Inc.
Partnership goals include establishing the causes of injuries, illnesses and deaths in this industry and recommending best practices to reduce these incidents; ensuring that industry workers are trained in using recommended best practices; and establishing a strategy to evaluate and ensure that the goals of the partnership are met.
“I am pleased to see the members of this OSHA Strategic Partnership back at the table today to sign a new agreement. This tells [us] that the previous years of the partnership have been successful for everyone concerned and that you find value in working with OSHA and with each other,” said OSHA Administrator Dr. David Michaels. “The families of workers in this industry are counting on us to work together so that every worker returns home, safe and healthy at the end of every single workday.”
The partnership achieved several goals since it was last renewed in 2008. These include reducing the number of fatal accidents from six in 2008 to two in 2009 and reducing the days away from work, restricted work activity or job transfer rate from 4.04 in 2008 to 2.95 in 2009. Additionally, nearly 4,400 apprentices, journeymen, foremen and general foremen completed the OSHA 10-Hour Outreach Training Program for the electrical transmission and distribution industry.
OSHA’s Strategic Partnership Program helps encourage, assist and recognize the efforts of partners to eliminate serious workplace hazards and achieve a high level of worker safety and health. Most strategic partnerships strive to have a broad impact by building cooperative relationships with groups of employers and workers. These partnerships are voluntary relationships among OSHA, employers, worker representatives and others, including trade unions, trade and professional associations, universities and other government agencies.