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NSSGA comments on MSHA proposal

Published by
World Cement,


The MSHA has proposed a rule that, according to the NSSGA, does little to improve workplace safety.

“The historically low injury rates achieved by industry demonstrates a collective commitment to safe practices, and these rates are not achieved by luck or by fluke. Aggregates operators take their safety responsibilities seriously, including the identification of hazards and unsafe conditions,” said Joseph Casper, NSSGA vice president of safety, in the comments. “We strongly question the merits of the proposed revision to the existing standard.”

Operators currently inspect work areas during shifts and address safety issues that are discovered accordingly. The proposed rule, as it is currently written, is seen by the NSSGA as overly prescriptive and will likely undercut operator ability to manage safety. The proposal would require workplace examinations to occur at the beginning of a shift and cover all areas that could conceivably be worked during the shift. This could reduce operator effectiveness in detecting hazards.

One NSSGA member said it could cost an extra US$25 000 annually for a single mid-sized facility to pay workers who are waiting to start production. These increased costs to comply with unnecessary regulations like the workplace exams proposed rule would risk increasing the price of stone, sand and gravel needed for construction projects on which private, industrial and commercial sectors are reliant for our nation’s growth and competitiveness.

“Virtually all safety professionals today recognise that the overwhelming majority of injuries and accidents are functions not of inherently unsafe conditions but of unsafe behaviours,” said Casper. MSHA’s proposed workplaces examination rule will laden operators with costly additional administrative burdens while doing nothing about addressing this predominant source of workplace injuries.

 

The NSSGA has informed the MSHA of its concern and has told the administration that it has yet to realise the costs of implementing the proposed rule.

Read the article online at: https://www.worldcement.com/the-americas/07102016/nssga-comments-on-msha-proposal/


 

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