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A new publication, "Safe and Innovative Work Best Practices for Mechanical Crafts,” presents 72 innovations and best practices to increase safety in mechanical contracting, one of America’s most dangerous industries.
Comfort Systems USA Northwest, Central Washington University, Oregon State University and McKinstry partnered to publish the best practices. This three-year effort was made possible through the Safety and Health Investment Projects (SHIP) grant program, administered by the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries. The published innovations and best practices are available to view or download at no cost.
Employee safety and health continues to be a concern for mechanical contractors (firms involved in heating, ventilation, air conditioning, refrigeration, plumbing, piping and mechanical service). Not only are construction injuries a significant cause of humanitarian concern, but the astronomical costs associated with these injuries and deaths are also a motivation for improving safety performance.
Many in the mechanical contracting industry have developed and implemented innovative work practices, but these are too often contained to a single project, a single fabrication shop, or a single crew. Disseminating information about the practices and tools developed by employees to all mechanical contractors will aid in enhancing safety performance throughout the industry.
Each of the included 72 innovations and best practices has been implemented, tested and proven to increase worker safety by mechanical contractors, product manufacturers and general contractors—they can be easily implemented on any work site to improve safety performance. The publication groups these safety best practices into the following categories:
Administered by the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries (L&I), SHIP’s purpose is to fund and support projects that prevent workplace injuries, illnesses and fatalities. This partnership (Grant No. 2016ZH00312) is the first SHIP grant addressing occupational safety and health as it relates to the mechanical construction industry.
Funding and support for this project has been provided by the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries, Safety & Health Investment Projects.