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New chairman appointed for Advisory Committee on Construction Safety and Health

On October 25, 2011, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced that Erich J. (Pete) Stafford will be the new chair of the Advisory Committee on Construction Safety and Health (ACCSH), replacing longstanding chairman Frank L. Migliaccio, Jr.

"Pete's wealth of knowledge and experience on a wide range of construction health and safety matters makes him an ideal choice to chair this important committee," said Assistant Secretary of Labor for OSHA Dr. David Michaels. "We appreciate his commitment to protect the welfare of our nation's construction workers and look forward to his leadership."

The new chairman has a wealth of experience in occupational safety and health, especially within the construction industry. Currently, Stafford works as executive director of the Center for Construction Research and Training (CCRT), a facility that conducts research and organizes training operations for more than 100,000 construction workers each year. The center produces detailed construction health and safety research reports each year.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), improvements in construction industry safety have led to a 40 percent decrease in workplace fatalities since 2006. In addition, fatal falls on construction sites have dropped 25 percent since 2007.

The proper selection, training, and use of fall protection systems can reduce injuries. Using site-specific fall protection plans will help identify hazards and provide solutions that can be implemented for worker safety.