OSHA Announces New Ergonomics Guidelines for Shipyards

WASHINGTON — The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced the release of Ergonomics for the Prevention of Musculoskeletal Disorders: Guidelines for Shipyards, an industry-specific guidance document that provides practical recommendations to help employers and employees reduce the number and severity of musculoskeletal disorders in the workplace.

“Shipyard work is considered one of the most hazardous occupations, with an injury rate more than twice that of construction and general industry,” said Assistant Secretary of Labor for OSHA Edwin G. Foulke, Jr. “These guidelines will assist many shipyards in their continued efforts to address and implement ways to reduce work-related musculoskeletal disorders.”

The guidelines emphasize various solutions that have been effectively implemented by shipyards across the country to decrease work-related musculoskeletal disorders. An “Implementing Solutions” section offers examples of ergonomic solutions that may be used to control exposure to ergonomics-related risk factors in shipyards.

OSHA will work with trade, labor and professional organizations to assure that these guidelines and other effective practices are accessible and implemented where appropriate. OSHA’s free consultation service will be available to assist small businesses.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing a safe and healthful workplace for their employees. OSHA’s role is to assure the safety and health of America’s working men and women 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 www.osha.gov.