Construction Safety Institute Strives for ‘Zero Accidents’!

JimBetween the birth of a unique idea in Indiana to build the Construction Safety Institute and its completion in the fall of 2013, the injury rate in Northwest Indiana in the construction industry continued to improve, said James Arendas (left), Ph.D., Environmental Safety and Health Director, Construction Advancement Foundation. In the 13.9 million man hours reported by NWI contractors for 2016, the performance shows substantially lower rates than the national average. For example, during the 2017 Northwest Indiana Business Roundtable Safety Awards Banquet, 42 companies received awards for performing below the Bureau of Labor Statistics rate. No better example are the contractors sending employees to the Construction Site Safety Certificate Modules. These are funded through the Susan Harwood Training Grant sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor, OSHA. These modules include safety administration, process safety management, industrial hygiene, confined safety entry, fall protection, trenching and excavating, risk assessment and accident investigation. From January through June, 2017, there have been 38 classes for 628 individuals involving 4866 contact hours. The 7,000 sq. ft. building incorporates a scaffold tower, underground storage tank, and variety of safety equipment designed for the safe simulation of actual safety hazards. “Launched 15 years ago, the institute is designed to help the NWI construction industry achieve the bold goal of zero accidents,” said Kevin Comerford, Director, Professional Development, CAF.

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