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Region 1 News Release:    07-9-BOS/BOS 2007-003
Jan. 11, 2007
Contact: Ted Fitzgerald
Phone: (617) 565-2074

New Alliance with U.S. Department of Labor's OSHA Aims to Enhance Safety for Heavy Equipment Operators in Central and Western Mass.

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. -- The U.S. Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has launched a new alliance with the Massachusetts Division of Occupational Safety (MA-DOS) and Local 98 of the International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE). The effort is aimed at improving job safety and health for heavy equipment operators and other workers in central and western Massachusetts.

The alliance seeks to prevent Local 98 members exposure to construction-related hazards, particularly falls, electrical hazards and injuries caused when employees are struck by or caught in between objects on job sites. The two government agencies and the union will develop and deliver safety and health courses and will develop workplace safety and health curricula.

"Construction is, by its very nature, highly hazardous work," said Mary Hoye, OSHA's area director for central and western Massachusetts. "This alliance will equip Local 98's members with the knowledge and skills to identify, prevent and better protect themselves against the most common construction hazards."

Under the alliance, OSHA, MA-DOS and Local 98 will share information about best practices. They will promote and encourage IUOE members and worksites to build rel