Information sought to prevent injuries from reinforcing concrete activities
Impalement, collapsed walls, and slips, trips, and falls are among the hazards faced by workers involved in reinforcing concrete activities. More than 30 workers died performing these actions between 2000 and 2009, according to officials.
OSHA initiated a Request for Information to gather comments on ways to prevent these injuries and deaths. The initiative may result in regulatory action.
Because concrete is not easily crushed but breaks easily when stretched, it must be reinforced through the use of steel bars -- called rebars -- reinforcement grids, plates, steel tendons, fibers, or other materials.
Two years ago, the International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental & Reinforcing Iron Workers and an industry coalition of stakeholders presented a petition to OSHA outlining the safety issues involved. It indicated that the use of steel-reinforced and post-tensioned poured-in-place concrete is likely to double its 1990 usage level by 2015.
An initial review determined little information is available on the rates of incidents caused by reinforcing steel and post-tensioning activities. The Bureau of Labor Statistics does not have data specific on the subject.
Comments must be submitted by June 27.
Read more at the WorkersComp Forum homepage.
April 26, 2012
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