Magazine article Occupational Hazards

OSHA Issues New Steel Erection Standard

Magazine article Occupational Hazards

OSHA Issues New Steel Erection Standard

Article excerpt

OSHA's steel erection standard, issued Jan. 17, is expected to prevent 30 fatalities and 1,142 injuries annually, and save employers nearly $40 million a year. The final rule will become effective July 17.

"Every year, an average of 35 iron workers die during steel erection activities, and 2,300 more suffer lost workday injuries," said OSHA Administrator Charles Jeffress, who ended his tenure two days after the rule was issued. "This standard will help prevent many of those fatalities and injuries. I commend business and labor interests for working together to develop this standard."

The standard enhances protections provided to iron workers by addressing hazards that have been identified as major causes of injuries and fatalities in the steel erection industry. These are hazards associated with working under loads; hoisting, landing and placing decking; column stability; double connections; landing and placing steel joints; and falls to lower levels.

The rule does not cover electric transmission towers, communication towers, broadcast towers, water towers or tanks.

The rule was developed by members of the Steel Erection Negotiated Rulemaking Advisory Committee (SENRAC), representing employers and employees significantly affected by the standard. …

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