Focus on workplace safety this week

Monday marks the beginning of the 5th annual “OSHA National Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction Week.”

From May 7 through 11, thousands of construction job sites across the country will hold safety stand-down events. It’s time industries take a moment to pause and talk about safety hazards at work.

A safety stand-down is a voluntary event to allow employers to speak with its employees about safety at work. Any workplace can conduct a safety talk, and any topic can be focused on – distracted driving, proper lifting, emergency evacuation, workplace stress, etc.

Over its brief five-year existence, this has grown and more and more industries are celebrating safety during this week. Every year more non-construction employers are holding stand-downs. In fact, OSHA claims that the largest single participant for one stand-down was the United States Air Force in 2015 and 2016, both times reaching more than one million military and civilian personnel.

The Keystone Contractors Association is a commercial construction trade association. We hope 100 percent of our members participate in an OSHA Stand-Down event this year. We, the association staff, are not construction professionals. We work in an office providing various services to contractors. But our staff of three will conduct our stand-down on emergency evacuation.

Following the stand-down, employers should visit the OSHA Stand-Down website to download a certificate and provide feedback on the experience. (tinyurl.com/nybnlf4). The sharing of best practices is an excellent way to improve safety and protect our workers.

At KCA, we believe that teamwork improves safety and we hope that work teams across Pennsylvania will take a moment to focus on safety.

Jon O’Brien

Executive Director

Keystone Contractors Association