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0008 A new model for outreach to small industrial firms: safety audit results from the National Machine Guarding Program0008 A new model for outreach to small industrial firms: safety audit results from the National Machine Guarding Program
  1. Samuel Yamin1,
  2. David Parker1,
  3. Lisa Brosseau2,
  4. Min Xi1,
  5. Bob Gordon3
  1. 1Park Nicollet Institute, St. Louis Park, MN, USA
  2. 2University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA
  3. 3Interrobang Group, Minneapolis, MN, USA

Abstract

Objectives Small industrial firms frequently lack occupational safety and health (OSH) expertise. In addition, development of effective, widely applicable OSH interventions for small businesses has proven to be a persistent challenge. The National Machine Guarding Program is an intervention currently underway to address these issues among small (3–150 employees) metal fabrication businesses.

Method A partnership was formed with workers’ compensation insurers to recruit businesses for an intervention designed to prevent machine-related injuries and improve safety programs such as lockout/tagout. Participants receive a baseline evaluation, two intervention visits, and a follow-up evaluation. Pooled results from baseline safety assessments will be presented.

Results 221 businesses from 29 U.S. states were enrolled. At baseline, the mean score for machine safety audit was 73.7%, however, only 67.5% of items concerning point of operation safeguards were present on average. For shop-wide safety programs and policies, mean audit score was 43.4%. Safety program/policy scores were significantly lower among smaller businesses, whereas machine safeguarding equipment scores were similar across all size strata.

Conclusions The National Machine Guarding Program represents a new intervention model for widespread outreach to small industrial firms. Baseline safety audit results show a need for improvement in shop-wide safety programs and in critical areas of machine safeguarding. Preliminary results indicate that this is an effective model for recruiting small metal fabrication businesses into a nationwide intervention. Effectiveness of intervention programs in improving these aspects of injury prevention will be evaluated to determine whether broader application is warranted.

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