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1M Workers Pledge to Stand Down

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

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From Palo Alto, CA, to Daytona Beach, FL, more than one million U.S. workers are expected to take a break from working at heights this week to talk about falls—the leading cause of death in construction.

A weeklong National Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction will be conducted as part of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s fall prevention campaign, Stopfalls.

Focus on Fall Prevention

“This is an unprecedented event,” U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez said in a video statement Monday (June 2) to kick off the voluntary event.

“The economy is on the rebound, housing starts are on the rise, and the summer construction season is getting underway.

“Now is the time to focus on this vital safety issue and make sure all construction workers come home at the end of every workday,” he said.

Falls from heights are the leading cause of death in the construction industry, accounting for 269 of the 775 construction fatalities recorded in 2012, OSHA noted.

The deaths and injuries are preventable, according to the agency. Lack of fall protection is the most frequently cited OSHA violation.

3 Steps for Safety

OSHA’s message to workers and employers is that “safety pays and falls cost.” The agency said three simple steps can prevent falls:

  1. Plan ahead to get the job done safely,
  2. Provide the right equipment, and
  3. Train everyone to use the equipment safely.

Stand-Down Events

Throughout the week, employers and workers will pause during their workday to focus on the hazards of falls and on how to prevent them.

Safety stand down poster in Spanish
OSHA

Employers interested in hosting a stand-down are encouraged to visit the Stand-Down website for information, provided in both Spanish and English.

Industry and business leaders, including universities, labor organizations, and community and faith-based groups, have already scheduled stand-downs in all 50 states and across the world, according to OSHA.

The events include:

Employers interested in hosting a stand-down are encouraged to visit the stand-down website for information, provided in both Spanish and English.

Employers can provide feedback and receive a Certificate of Participation for completed stand-down events signed by the Secretary of Labor.

Stand-Down participants are encouraged to share their experiences on Twitter by using #StandDown4Safety and tagging @USDOL.

   

Tagged categories: Commercial Construction; Contractors; Fall protection; Fatalities; Health and safety; OSHA; Residential Construction; Safety equipment

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