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OSHA releases Emergency Response proposed rule

Would replace existing Fire Brigades Standard

Posted February 5, 2024

OSHA’s Emergency Response proposed rule, published in the Federal Register February 5, would create a new safety and health standard to replace its existing Fire Brigades Standard. It would provide updated health and safety protections for firefighters, emergency medical service providers, and technical search and rescuers.

The proposal also would bring the standard in line with the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) National Response Framework and modernize the standard to align with the current industry consensus standards issued by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) on the safe conduct of emergency response activities.

OSHA says its current Fire Brigades standard, 1910.156, provides protection specifically to industrial or private firefighters but no other types of emergency responders. It was published in 1980 and has not been updated with subsequent improvements in personal protective clothing and equipment or advances in safety and health practices.

Comments on the proposed rule will be accepted until May 6, 2024. Search for Docket No. OSHA-2007-0073 at www.regulations.gov.

This article was written by Rachel Krubsack of J. J. Keller & Associates, Inc.

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