Evaluating an Education Intervention in Extension Ladder Set-up and Use in Construction

  • Lineberry, Gene (PI)

Grants and Contracts Details


Falls from extension ladders in construction are frequent and can lead to serious injury and death. An analysis of data for construction-related falls provided by one southeastern U.S. state's not-for-profit insurer of high-risk construction companies showed that 28.8% of the falls were ladder-related. In an earlier NIOSH study, an educational intervention in extension ladder set-up and use, suitable for construction workers, was developed. The intervention is in the form of two checklists that can be applied to a variety of settings where extension ladders are used. Each checklist is divided into five primary activities, with a total of about 25 sub-tasks for set-up and for use. The checklists were developed following focus groups with roofing contractors, input from loss education and policyholder services personnel from Kentucky Employers' Mutual Insurance (KEMI) and NIOSH researchers, with validation from an extensive review ofladder safety literature. The purpose ofthis project is to validate and evaluate the educational intervention checklists for extension ladder set-up and use in construction. Project personnel will continue to work collaboratively with those testing the WCPM in vocational agriculture, as that project team (Isaacs, Powers, and Lineberry) develop similar checklists for a high-risk agricultural activity, most probably the handling of farm animals, with emphasis on dairy and beef cattle. Frequent technical consultation from NIOSH project officers will ensure successful completion of the project. The work outlined in this quotation is divided into five tasks. Task #1. In consultation with NIOSH project officers and with the support of loss education specialist(s) within KEMI, the PI will prepare a tool-box education presentation based upon the extension ladder set-up and use checklists. The tool-box talk will be designed to convey the main points of the checklist in an oral presentation, probably about 30-45 min in duration. The presentation will be suitable for use on working construction sites (thereby having minimum dependence on technology) and will be customizable for small, medium, and heavy construction. The fadder safety sessions will be designed to be conducted by KEMI representatives, with the PI present for collection of evaluative data. The deliverable for this task is a draft ofthe tool-box talk, to be submitted to the NIOSH project officer within three (3) months of the receipt of the extension ladder set-up and use lists from NIOSH. Task #2. Again in consultation with NIOSH project officers and with the support ofloss education specialist(s) within KEMI, a technical review of the checklist and tool-box talk will be conducted. This review will ensure that the content of the safety session is both correct and salient. Safety and health professionals who are knowledgeable and experienced in extension ladder set-up and use will be selected and invited to serve as technical reviewers of the materials developed in Task # 1. Included in this review panel will be at least one representative or inspector from the Federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration, one investigator from a workers' compensation insurer, one representative from a construction union, one representative from the Center to Protect Workers' Rights, and safety professionals experienced in small, medium and heavy construction (working for construction firms and/or for universities or colleges or other non-profit organizations). No fewer than eight (8) content-proficient specialists will be recruited and empaneled. While site visits to recruit these reviewers might be required, it is anticipated that most recruitment will be handled by telephone and that the reviews will be conducted through the mail. Reviewers' comments will be organized and evaluated in consultation with the NIOSH project officers and the checklist and tool-box talk will be revised as necessary. Copies of the review comments will be submitted to NIOSH within seven (7) days of receipt and the revised checklists and tool-box talk will be submitted within two (2) months following discussion with the NIOSH project officers, probably to occur in Cincinnati, Ohio. It is anticipated that Task #2 will require a total of six (6) months to complete. Task #3. In consultation with NIOSH project officers and KEMI representatives, a suitable evaluation of both the checklists and the tool-box talk will be designed. Pre- and post-test measures, built around the tool-box talk as the treatment, will be planned. Although it is anticipated that additional data will want to be collected, at a minimum, comments or assessments from construction workers regarding the following will be collected: (1) knowledge of safe ladder use, (2) receptivity to, and evaluation of, the talk, (3) awareness of ladder-safety concerns, as identified in the checklists, (4) intention to follow the safe work practices outlined in the checklist, (5) prioritized list of subtasks, as determined by the worker's perception of the , cost-consequence of non-performance and (6) self-report data concerning frequency of safe/correct subtask performance. In addition, comments or assessments from construction worker trainers will be sought, as determined appropriate during mid-point meeting(s) with NIOSH project officers. The post-tests will be designed for application immediately following the safety session and four-six weeks following the tool-box session. The exact timetable for the design, assessment techniques, and sample selection will be determined in consultation with the NISH project officers. The PI will participate, as necessary, with NIOSH project officers in preparing a protocol for internal NIOSH review, as well as in securing clearances which may be required for later task completion (see Task 4 below). Task #3 deliverables include: (1) the completed research design and materials to be used in the evaluation (within two (2) months after acceptance of Task #2); (2) a final draft of the evahilltion materials within one (1) month following a discussion with the NIOSH project officers; and (3) as necessary, complete and submit necessary OMB or other clearance forms. It is estimated that Task #3 will require a total of six (6) months to complete. Task #4. The PI, with the collaboration ofKEMI specialists and the counsel ofNIOSH project officers, will carry out the evaluation study as developed in Task #3. The sam~le set will be identified by KEMI, in consultation with the PI, and will represent small, medIUm, and large construction firms. It is estimated that Task #4 will require six (6) months to complete. Task #5. Within six (6) months ofthe conclusion of the data collection phase (Task #4), and in a manner necessary to maintain confidentiality of the identities of the par?cipant~, the final r:port will be written and submitted to NIOSH for review. The final report wIll contam an analysIs of the data collected, as well as revisions to the tool-box talk and checklists, as necessary, both in consultation with the NIOSH project officers.
Effective start/end date10/1/018/16/04


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