NECA 2014 Chicago provided attendees with useful information on new technologies, installation methods, tools, materials as well as safety resources. With this much information available, selecting which training session to attend can sometimes be challenging.
One session, the sixth-annual Safety Roundtable, was an excellent opportunity for contractors to have a two-way discussion on NECA’s safety-related activities, OSHA regulations, and general electrical industry safety needs. Wes Wheeler, NECA Director of Safety, moderated the 2-hour class which included reports from Palmer Hickman, ETI (NJATC) Director of Codes and Safety Standards, and Safety Task Force Chairman, George Adams.
The following is a recap of the core discussion topics:
- Status of new or revised safety & health regulations – 2015 NFPA 70E released and now supersedes all previous editions (voluntary), OSHA formally delays crane operator certification requirements for 3 more years, Silica and Confined Space proposed rules pending, Haz-Com (GHS) written program required by June 2015, T&D arc flash hazard analysis and PPE requirements for 2015.
- NECA Safety Resources – Application of Safety Meeting and PPE Selector Apps, newly revised employee safety handbooks, NFPA 70E guides – Contractor Responsibilities and 2015 Significant Changes.
- Miscellaneous – OSHA / IBEW requirements for injury reporting, value of leading indicators when using prompt near miss reporting, uniformity between NECA contractors when dealing with energized electrical work tasks, challenges when dealing with safety related disciplinary issues.
The next Safety Roundtable takes place at the upcoming NECA Safety Professionals Conference, May 18-20, 2015 in Phoenix, Arizona. I encourage you, or your safety representative to attend if possible.