The National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association (NSSGA) and the U. S. Department of Labor’s Mine Safety and Health Administration reaffirmed their decade-old alliance aimed at preventing injuries and illnesses at U.S. aggregates operations. The 2002 MSHA-NSSGA Alliance was the first of its kind between an industry association and the federal government.
The MSHA-NSSGA Alliance Co-chair Louis Griesemer, president and CEO, Springfield Underground Inc., Springfield, Mo., said, “Although the alliance is precluded from getting into the area of enforcement, the work done in training, leadership and education by way of Safety Alerts, NSSGA’s magazine safety pull-outs, and quarterly CEO safety newsletters is critical for all aggregates operators.”
Signed at MSHA’s headquarters on Dec. 7 in Arlington, Va., the agreement calls for the two organizations to work closely together on the promotion of safe working conditions, the development of effective miner training programs and the expansion of mine safety and health outreach and communication.
“The signing of a fourth Alliance agreement by NSSGA with MSHA, along with our industry’s eleven-year-long streak of reduced injury rates, exemplifies the aggregates sector’s commitment to providing the safest and healthiest workplaces,” said NSSGA Vice Chairman of the Board Ward Nye, president and CEO, Martin Marietta Materials, Raleigh, N.C.
“We are pleased to continue this cooperation between the aggregates industry and the federal government,” added NSSGA President and CEO R. A. Edwards, III. “The alliance reaffirms that NSSGA members value their workers as their greatest asset. Last year, the aggregates industry saw a reduced injury rate to just 2.27 injuries per 200,000 hours worked, which is down from the previous year. This constituted the 11th consecutive year of falling injury rates. Our goal, however, is the lowest-possible injury rate and we are determined to keep up our effort.”
Under the agreement, NSSGA works jointly with MSHA to develop training and education programs aimed at reducing aggregates operations hazards as well as dissemination of information on safety and health at conferences and events, or through print and electronic media.
Both groups work to promote a national dialogue on safety and health by sharing information on best practices or effective approaches to eliminating hazards, as jointly determined by MSHA and NSSGA, with others in the mining industry through individual or joint outreach.