Safety Excellence Initiative

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Safety Excellence Initiative

In 1997 MCAA announced its first ever National Safety Excellence Initiative. The purpose was to establish a perpetual initiative that would provide unsurpassed mechanical construction and service industry-specific safety services for MCAA, MSCA, PCA and NCPWB members. Two decades later the initiative continues to grow with considerable momentum. The primary services include:

  • Educational Resources
  • Annual Safety Directors’ Conference
  • Safety and Health Webinars
  • Safety Excellence Awards Programs
  • Members Only Safety Issues List Serve (Safety-Talk)
  • Timely Information on Urgent Topics/Issues
  • Telephone Consulting Services
  • Legislative and Regulatory Lobbying

Read on to learn more about what's new in the field or find safety-related resources.

What's New

Make sure your service techs have the up-to-date safety training they need to protect themselves from arc flash and electrical shock hazards while working on equipment pushing 480 volts or less. The session covers all applicable OSHA requirements, NFPA 70E provisions, best practices, and real-world accident information.

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), which is the research arm of OSHA, reports that narcotics—i.e., opioids— account for 29 percent of prescription costs covered by workers’ compensation. Opioids are highly addictive, and opioid overdoses are common.

OSHA’s new standard on Respirable Crystalline Silica is enforceable as of Saturday, September 23, 2017. However, employers who make good faith efforts to comply will receive compliance assistance from OSHA up to October 23, 2017.

OSHA’s new silica rule becomes enforceable on September 23, 2017. MCAA has several silica safety resources that are available to members for free as a benefit of membership. In addition, CNA, a long-time partner in safety with MCAA, is sharing its silica compliance course with MCAA members.

Concrete drilling is dusty, loud, and exhausting work. If your employees spend hours on end drilling holes with a hammer drill in order to hang pipes or duct work, you probably know that a sharp new drill bit makes the work faster, but did you know it can help protect your workers from dust, noise and vibration, too?

In preparation for impending hurricanes, partner in safety CNA developed four planning guides covering flooding, hail, and business continuity.

MCAA’s Safety Leadership for Supervisors training video will provide your supervisors with an overview of the skills required to be a good safety leader and build a strong safety culture.

MCAA recently released its newly revised Safety Manual for Mechanical Construction Workers. The manual, which includes substantive revisions to sections on CPR, choking, OSHA, silica, and confined spaces in construction, and new sections on noise, manganese, and zinc, is now available in print.

MSCA recently released an electronic version of its newly revised Safety Manual for Mechanical Service Technicians. It is now available in print. The manual includes substantive revisions to sections on CPR, choking, OSHA, arc flash and electrical shock protection, and refrigerants, and new sections on hexavalent chromium, manganese, noise and zinc.

MCAA’s new worker safety training video, Safe Pressure Testing of Steel and Copper Piping Systems, and its accompanying materials are now available to members. The video walks the viewer through the most common causes of steel and copper piping system pressure testing failures, pretest walk-downs, and general safe work practices for hydrostatic and pneumatic pressure testing.   

Mark your calendar for MCAA’s 15th annual Safety Directors’ Conference, which will be presented January 23 – 25, 2018. Registration opens on October 1, 2017.

MCAA’s Safety Management for Supervisors Training Video follows a seasoned mechanical construction supervisor as he leads a new colleague through the skills that are critical for effective safety management on mechanical construction projects. The video describes the key management skills that enable supervisors to keep employees safe and help maintain project profitability.

Now is a great time to remind your fitters, plumbers, service technicians, and their supervisors about heat illnesses and how to prevent them.

MCAA recently released its new safety training video Better by Design: Musculoskeletal Wellness for Mechanical Construction Workers. The video, which replaces the association’s obsolete (2002) video on the safe manual handling of materials, addresses the most common causes of non-trauma related musculoskeletal pains and injuries in the mechanical construction industry.

Mechanical construction requires that workers perform many of their tasks at heights of 6’ or more above a lower level or an object. MCAA’s Fall Restraint and Arrest Systems Safety Training Video educates workers about when and how to properly use fall restraint and fall protection systems to protect themselves from injury. Accompanying materials highlight key training points and assist contractors in documenting worker training and confirming that workers understand the training.

OSHA recently published a proposed rule that would establish a five-month enforcement delay of the new provisions in it’s recordkeeping rule. The new provisions require affected employers to report work-related injuries and illnesses to the agency annually in electronic format.

“Uh-oh, OSHA just showed up!” These words can turn even the most seasoned jobsite supervisors into nervous wrecks. Avoid the stress with MCAA’s OSHA Inspections Safety Training Video, which will help you prepare for and properly manage OSHA jobsite safety inspections.

A new volume of toolbox safety talks is now available. MCAA Toolbox Safety Talks for Mechanical Construction Workers (Volume VI) features 52 new talks representing one talk for each week in a calendar year.

Each year the National Safety Council encourages America to celebrate National Safety Month (June). MCAA is helping you celebrate with three new Safety Resources.

MCAA’s model safety programs make it quick and easy to create customized safety programs. Whether you need to develop a sound, industry-specific basic safety and health program for construction or service, or enhance an existing program, MCAA’s got you covered. A variety of topic-specific model programs complement the basic programs and ensure your compliance with OSHA requirements.

OSHA recently delayed enforcement of its 2016 rule on respirable crystalline silica. The enforcement date has been changed from June 23, 2017 to September 23, 2017.

MCAA urges all affected members to participate in the 4th annual nationwide OSHA Safety Stand Down to help prevent workers from falling from elevations, and protect those workers who do fall.

Are you assertively addressing distracted driving and other workplace distractions with your fitters, plumbers, service techs, and other affected workers? MCAA’s worker safety training video on workplace distractions and six other workplace distractions safety resources will help you get the message out.

OSHA’s new rule to protect construction workers from overexposure to crystalline silica becomes enforceable on September 23, 2017. Under the right conditions, overexposure to silica can lead to silicosis and other health problems. To help its members protect their workers, MCAA provides several resources. All are free to members as a benefit of membership.

The OSHA 10 & 30 hour construction safety standards courses, and the OSHA 10 hour general industry safety standards course (fabrication shops & mechanical service work) are available to MCAA and MSCA members at discounted prices.

Silica - Respiratory Protection

Silica

OSHA recently published a new rule to protect construction workers from overexposure to crystalline silica, which under the right conditions, can lead to silicosis and other health problems. To help its members protect their workers, MCAA: This topic was addressed in detail at MCAA’s 2017 Safety Directors’ Conference.
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MCAA Safety Resources for 2017
MCAA is developing and producing several new safety and health resources this year. All of them are free to members in electronic format as a benefit of membership. The following new resources are already available: In addition, you can expect the following new safety resource in 2017:
  • Protection from Workplace Violence Video and Accompanying Materials Video and Accompanying Materials
The release of each will be announced on the MCAA website.
Respiratory Protection
Safety Resources on Respiratory Protection
MCAA's worker safety training video on respiratory protection for mechanical construction and service workers covers mandatory respiratory protection training requirements for workers using air-purifying respirators. A pocket guide, training documentation sheet, 20-question multiple choice test and answer key are also available. And, MCAA offers a model program on the topic. All of these resources are available to members for free.
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Safety-Talk
Safety-Talk is direct e-mail communication to more than 250 MCAA member firm safety professionals, and other individuals responsible for workplace safety and health in their companies. The TEAM MCAA community that makes up Safety-Talk shares safety and health related experiences, programs, solutions to problems, and other information in a timely manner. If you would like more information, or would like to participate on Safety-Talk, send an e-mail to Pete Chaney.
Compliance
OSHA Recordkeeping
OSHA recently published changes to its existing recordkeeping rule, which now requires affected employers to submit work-related injury and illness information to OSHA annually. To help members comply with these changes, MCAA:
  • Provided members with an MCAA Safety Bulletin highlighting key changes to the existing rule, and summarizing the rule changes.
  • Is working to identity and provide the best available technology to help members comply with the new requirements as efficiently and cost effectively as possible.
  • Addressed the topic in detail at the 2017 Safety Directors’ Conference.