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Iron Workers UNION spurs OSHA survey on rebar placement accident reduction

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has issued a Request for Information (RFI) that seeks comments through June 2 on how to prevent injuries and deaths from reinforcing concrete activities in construction, and from vehicles and mobile equipment backing into workers in construction. The agency will use responses to learn more about how workers get injured and what solutions exist to prevent injury and death, including possible regulatory action.

Workers who use reinforcing methods to strengthen concrete face potentially life-threatening hazards including impalement; collapsed walls; and, slips, trips and falls. OSHA data indicate that more than 30 workers died while performing these activities from 2000-2009. Safety issues relating to these operations were brought to OSHA's attention in a 2010 petition from the International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental & Reinforcing Iron Workers and an industry coalition of stakeholders including the Concrete Steel Reinforcing Institute, the Western Steel Council, and the Center for Construction Research and Training. Comments must be submitted through www.regulations.gov, the Federal eRulemaking Portal.