OSHA seeks comments on lead in construction standard

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration today called for comments on its lead in construction standard that requires testing for lead exposures, provisions to protect workers from exposure where lead is present, and medical monitoring of exposed workers. OSHA is conducting a review of lead in construction standard under Regulatory Flexibility Act to determine if standard is needed and if it should be amended...

WASHINGTON, DC, June 6, 2005 (U.S. Newswire) -- The Occupational Safety and Health Administration today called for comments on its lead in construction standard that requires testing for lead exposures, provisions to protect workers from exposure where lead is present, and medical monitoring of exposed workers.

OSHA is conducting its regulatory review of the lead in construction standard under Section 610 of the Regulatory Flexibility Act and Section 5 of Executive Order 12866 to determine if the standard is needed and if it should be amended.

"It is important that we regularly review our standards," said Acting Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Jonathan L. Snare. "In this case, the review requests comments as to the necessity for the Agency to modify this standard to make implementation more practical, reduce the regulatory burden on small business, and improve its effectiveness, while still protecting worker health."

The construction industry employs millions of workers in jobs where lead exposures are most likely to occur, like paint removal, building and bridge renovation, plumbing, and water system repair and replacement. Overexposure to lead can cause serious damage to the body's blood-forming, nervous, urinary and reproductive systems. OSHA's lead in construction standard establishes procedures for minimizing the level of exposure to lead for all workers covered.

Public comments are welcome and must be sent in triplicate by Sept. 6, 2005, to Docket Office, Docket No. H023, Technical Data Center, Room N-2625, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Ave., N.W., Washington, D.C. 20210. Comments may also be faxed to 202-693-1648, or submitted online at www.regulations.gov or http://ecomments.osha.gov.

Today's Federal Register has details on the lead in construction standard's regulatory review.

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 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 www.osha.gov.

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