CoatingsPro Magazine

JUL 2013

CoatingsPro offers an in-depth look at coatings based on case studies, successful business operation, new products, industry news, and the safe and profitable use of coatings and equipment.

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procedures for the approval and withdrawal of standards as ANSI and determining whether submitted standards met ANSI guidelines. As a result, industry, public, and government agencies became increasingly reliant on ANSI standards as key to impacting product development and quality or environmental compliance. ANSI safety standards are not intended to be taken lightly nor viewed as mere suggestions. Instead, they are implemented as responsible best practices that maximize worker safety and minimize the risk of serious injury or death. They are voluntary standards in the sense that their use is not required but highly recommended and encouraged as best practices. However, compared to ANSI, ASTM's standard development is more heavily rooted in technology and applies to subjects such as steel, petroleum, medical devices, property management, consumer products, and more. OSHA, on the other hand, is a division of the U. S. Department of Labor that sets and enforces standards and provides training, outreach, education, and assistance for working men and women in order to facilitate awareness and understanding of their standards. Unlike ANSI and ASTM, OSHA regulations are governing law and are mandatory in nature, requiring all affected employers and their workers to comply. In the event Are ANSI Standards Really Voluntary? The enforceability of ANSI's consensus standards has typically been an area of confusion. Technically, ANSI standards are considered voluntary consensus standards and are not written as laws or regulations. However, the voluntary status of ANSI regulations changes significantly when OSHA adopts an ANSI standard by reference. If OSHA incorporates a specific ANSI standard into any of its regulations, the voluntary standard automatically converts into a federal requirement. For example, one such case occurred with OSHA 1910.215, Abrasive Wheel Machinery. Section 1910.215(b)(12) requires abrasive machinery guards to conform to the ANSI B7.1-1970 standard on abrasive wheels. Because OSHA specifically incorporated the ANSI B7.1 standard into its regulation, the voluntary standard officially became a federal requirement. If any ANSI standard incorporated by OSHA is later revised, OSHA issues directives to conform to the newer versions. If companies bypass the ANSI B7.1 standard, they are in violation of a federal law and may face citations or hefty fines. What Is the Difference Between ANSI, ASTM, and OSHA? Both ANSI and the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) are nonprofit organizations that lead in the development and delivery of international voluntary consensus standards, striving to enhance safety, improve product quality, and build users' confidences. Write in Reader Inquiry #112 July 2013 g www.coatingspromag.com 35

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