NIOSH and Toyota Collaborate on Safety and Health Research

Jan. 12, 2010
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America Inc.’s (TEMA) Department of Environmental and Safety Engineering have pledged to collaborate on research “to improve the assessment, management, analysis and control of workplace conditions related to the safety and health of employees.”

NIOSH and TEMA will “work cooperatively through the partnership to identify research priorities, perform analysis on current workplace practices, develop intervention methods and facilitate communication and implementation of effective workplace injury prevention,”

“We are pleased to take this step with TEMA on collaborative research that will address some of today’s most prominent health and safety challenges,” said NIOSH Director John Howard, M.D. “Working together, we look forward to generating new science-based insights, practices, and interventions for preventing job-related injuries and illnesses, and for instilling safety as a basic operating principle of 21st century business.”

“Toyota’s goal is to be the safest automobile manufacturer in North America and we are grateful for the opportunity to work with NIOSH,” said Kevin M. Butt, general manager, Production Engineering-Environmental Safety Engineering for TEMA. “Safety is a top priority for our 30,000 team members across the continent and we will benefit from NIOSH’s wealth of experience to help us continuously improve our safety and health processes while promoting best practices.”

Areas of research and analysis under the memorandum of understanding include but are not limited to:

  • The benefits of effective safety management system programs.
  • Effective ergonomic injury-prevention programs and strategies to address aging workforce trends, diverse workforce demographics, repetitive motion risk factors, and flexible manufacturing requirements.
  • Effective programs and strategies to address slips, trips, and falls; fleet safety; and traumatic injury prevention.
  • Exposure effects and controls of industrial hygiene risk factors.
  • The impact of positive safety culture elements and the benefits of comprehensive programs that extend to individual and community aspects.

NIOSH and TEMA agreed to designate representatives to develop a plan of action for addressing the goals, and to identify respective roles and responsibilities. For each specific research project developed as a result of the memorandum of understanding, NIOSH and TEMA will develop a project-level agreement that addresses various issues relevant to that specific area of research.

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