By David Womack, Ph.D.
Safety and Health Manager, HSEQ & Owners Advisory Committee Chair
Early in the development of the Association of Reciprocal Safety Councils (ARSC) it was understood that to be successful the organization needed input from their stakeholders including Owners. Owners are representatives from petrochemical or other manufacturing companies that make decisions about contractor training requirements. Input comes to ARSC through the member councils and though the Owners Advisory Committee (OAC). Each ARSC member council is required to name an OAC representative to be a member in good standing.
The OAC Chair and co-Chair are appointed by the ARSC Board of Director Chair. David Womack from Covestro LLC representing the Industrial Safety Training Council is the current Chair. Connie Fabre’ from the Greater Baton Rouge Industrial Alliance representing the Alliance Safety Training Council is the co-Chair.
Owner representatives are expected to communicate ARSC information to and seek input from the other owner companies that utilize their council. The OAC is organized to encourage a diversity of owner companies.
The OAC’s mission:
The OAC will seek consensus among owners on the current needs of the industry. They will communicate these needs to the ARSC Executive Committee and discuss possible ways these needs can be met through ARSC. The OAC will also serve as advisors for specific issues with ARSC for clarification and direction such as content and implementation of new or updated programs.
The OAC currently meets twice per year to get updates and provide feedback. OAC members are encouraged to participate in reviewing new or updated training materials. As an example of the OAC’s influence, a member recently suggested a particular set of hand signals to direct movement of heavy equipment. The goal was to standardize hand signals in our industry to avoid confusion and potential incidents including fatalities. These hand signals are being incorporated into the next version of Basic Orientation and Basic Orientation Plus. Another example is a request by the OAC for ARSC to develop training for confined space attendants, fire watches and supplied breathing air attendants. This training should be developed and in place by the beginning of 2020. ARSC is also investigating the development of a Reciprocal Background Screening process at the request of the OAC. There are compliance concerns and technological issues that must be worked through before this process can be put into place, but a committee has been established to develop this process.
To learn more about the OAC please contact the current OAC Chair David Womack firstname.lastname@example.org.