OSHA Says Injury Rate at WTC Half that of Similar Sites

After nearly 3 million work hours, 35 workers at the World Trade Center recovery site suffered injuries that resulted in lost workdays, according to OSHA.

After nearly 3 million work hours, 35 workers at the World Trade Center (WTC) recovery site suffered injuries that resulted in lost workdays, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Of the 35 reported cases, none were life-threatening.

"The lost workday injury and illness rate (LWDII) rate at the World Trade Center is 2.3," said OSHA Administrator John Henshaw. He added that while the work being done here is clearly unparalleled, the closest comparison is specialty construction (which includes demolition). The lost time injury and illness rate for specialty construction is 4.3.

"Given the extraordinary circumstances involved, this rate reflects the tremendous effort of everyone involved - the workers, Building and Construction Trades Council of Greater NY (BCTC), Building Trades Employer's Association (BTEA), the City of New York and the federal government," said Patricia K. Clark, OSHA's regional administrator in New York.

The LWDII was obtained by collecting the injury and illness data from all the contractors at the site. The rate was then calculated in the way injury and illness rates are customarily calculated - by dividing the number of OSHA-recordable injuries by the number of hours worked. This rate covers all contractor employees working at the WTC site.

OSHA signed a partnership agreement in November 2001 with contractors, employees, employee representatives and governmental agencies participating in the emergency response efforts in lower Manhattan. In order to continue this cooperative effort to protect all workers at the WTC site and to keep the injury and illness rate as low as possible, OSHA has entered into a new partnership with the construction manager Bovis/Amec, BCTC and BTEA. The partnership was signed on April 10.

edited by Sandy Smith (ssmith@penton.com)

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