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November 15, 2002

The Honorable John Henshaw
Assistant Secretary of Labor
Occupational Safety and Health Administration -- Room S2315
U.S. Department of Labor
200 Constitution Avenue
Washington, D.C. 20210

RE: Referencing Z490.1 in OSHA Rulemaking and Web Site Training Materials

Dear Assistant Secretary Henshaw:

The American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) is the Secretariat for the American National Standards Institute Z490.1 Standard entitled "Criteria for Accepted Practices in Safety, Health, and Environmental Training." The standard, approved in July 2001, sets accepted practices for SH&E training to help employers and consumers select quality safety and health training materials, instructors and other program components. Z490.1 is also used to audit, monitor, evaluate and analyze the programs of training providers as well as the employee training activities of corporations and government entities seeking third-party review.

As you well know, federal agencies were encouraged to utilize consensus standards by both Congress in Public Law 104-113, "The National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1995," and the Office of Management and Budget in its Circular A-119, "Federal Participation in the Development and Use of Voluntary Consensus Standards and in Conformity Assessment Activities."

ASSE knows that you share with our members the understanding that standards in occupational safety and health save lives. Training is a

key element to ensuring that workers protect themselves and others in the workplace. By raising awareness of the availability of Z490.1, ASSE believes that occupational safety, health and environment training of workers can improve and, thus, help save lives and prevent injuries.

To that end, ASSE respectfully asks that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) help further the awareness of Z490.1 through its activities, including

  • referencing Z490.1 in any future rulemaking or publications involving occupational safety, health and environmental training, and
  • providing links on the OSHA web site that would encourage those people seeking information on training to consider availing themselves of the valuable training information provided in Z490.1.

Including links to Z490.1 in the various excellent training materials offered on OSHA's site would only add to OSHA's message that training is essential for safe and healthy workplaces. For example, added to documents like the enclosed OSHA handout concerning "Developing a Training Program for Powered Industrial Truck Operators" available at would be helpful in ensuring increased use of the standards in occupational safety and health training. Included here is a link that, if placed at appropriate places on the OSHA web site, would automatically bring individuals to the place on ASSE's web site where Z490.1 could be purchased --

As always, ASSE appreciates your leadership in furthering the health and safety of America's workers and greatly appreciates your time in helping us encourage reliance on Z490.1 as an important tool to improve workplace safety and health.


Mark D. Hansen, PE, CSP

cc: Steve Witt
Hank Payne

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