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OSHA renews strategic alliance to improve scaffold safety

On December 18, 2013, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) renewed an alliance with the Scaffold and Access Industry Association (SAIA). The goal of this agreement is to reduce on-the-job injuries among workers who use scaffolds and aerial lift equipment by providing education and training.

Through their cooperative efforts, OSHA and SAIA hope to decrease caught-in-between and fall hazards, emphasize employee rights and employer responsibilities, and address potential risks involved with suspended scaffolds, mast climbing scaffolds, and lift equipment. They also plan to utilize injury data to determine compliance assistance and education requirements for workers and employers.

"Worker injuries and deaths from scaffolding hazards can be prevented when employers provide training on safe set up and use of equipment," explained Dr. David Michaels, assistant secretary of occupational safety and health. "By renewing our alliance with SAIA we will expand our outreach to employers and workers and provide important training to protect workers in the scaffold and access industry."

Crews that work on or near scaffolding and lift equipment may be exposed to occupational hazards like falls, electrocution from power lines, being struck by fallen objects, and scaffold collapse. Help reduce these risks by equipping workers with personal protective equipment such as hard hats and fall protection.