Partnership receives national award
for 10-hour construction safety training
Idaho’s largest public works program involves not just new roadways and bridges, but miles of new work zones. The GARVEE Transportation Program won first place this spring in a national work zone safety competition for its statewide training program.
The award, presented by the American Road and Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) on March 10, is given annually to organizations that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to safety training.
Connecting Idaho Partners (CIP) in cooperation with ITD and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) developed the winning program. The three partners pioneered a new 10-hour training session specific to roadway construction. Since 2007, the team has trained 86 state employees and 93 contractors from 31 organizations.
OSHA’s standard 10-hour program covers the four leading causes of fatalities on a job site and often is required by construction companies. While a typical session runs between $150 and $250, this training was free for ITD employees and contractors. OSHA and CIP both donated their travel expenses and time.
Each training module was customized to safety in the work zone.
The ITD Division of Highways estimates that 850 ITD employees are regularly exposed to hazards like hot asphalt, heavy equipment, high structures and moving traffic.
ITD signed an alliance in 2005 with OSHA to promote worker safety, and provides regular training sessions for employees.
The award-winning 10-hour program, however, involved private-sector contractors at no cost to ITD.
“We’ve had a tremendous response from the private sector and ITD employees,” said Trey Mink of District 4, who represented ITD on the training team. “The combination of abilities on the training team – the teaching skills of Aaron Moore of CIP and the OSHA perspective from Bill Bankhead – made it a unique partnership.”
Other departments of transportation have expressed interest in replicating the program, and OSHA plans to schedule additional trainings after the summer construction season.
The three trainers agreed that the tremendous amount of accelerated construction through the GARVEE Transportation Program makes safety training essential. Studies by OSHA show that every dollar spent on training results in $4 savings in workman’s compensation and productivity.
“I want everyone to go home in the same condition they came to work in, if not better,” Mink said.