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Region 5 News Release: 09-484-CHI
May 27, 2009
Contact: Brad Mitchell or Scott Allen
Phone: 312-353-6976

Grain and Feed Association of Illinois, state onsite safety and health consultation program ally with U.S. Labor Department's OSHA to address industry hazards

PEORIA, Ill. -- Agricultural workers throughout Illinois will benefit from an alliance signed today at the Hotel Pere Marquette in Peoria by the Grain and Feed Association of Illinois (GFAI), the state's Onsite Safety and Health Consultation Program, and the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

The alliance will focus on preventing exposure to hazards related to machine guarding, lockout to prevent accidental energy start-ups, slip and fall hazards, ergonomic stressors and confined space entry, some of the most common workplace injuries and illness threats for workers in the industry.

"Workplace fatalities and serious injuries due to falls, failure to control hazardous energy and amputation hazards continue to be among some of the top safety issues in the country," said Nick A. Walters, OSHA's area director in Peoria. "Working with the GFAI and the state consultation program to eliminate or control these hazards at individual worksites will ultimately make Illinois workplaces safer."

The three organizations will work to develop training and education programs designed specifically for worksites in the grain handling and storage industry. The alliance calls for the sharing of information regarding best practices and effective approaches to control safety and health hazards.

OSHA health and safety alliances are part of the U.S. Department of Labor's ongoing efforts to improve health and safety for workers through cooperative partnerships. OSHA's role is to assure the safety and health of America's workers by setting and enforcing standards; providing training, outreach and education; establishing partnerships; and encouraging continual process improvement in workplace safety and health. For more information, visit