issue 11-47

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AAA Report Finds Societal Cost of Traffic Crashes Triples that of Congestion

The annual societal cost of traffic crashes is $299.5 billion, more than three times the $97.7 billion cost of congestion, according to a report released on November 3 by the American Automobile Association (AAA).

FMCSA Posts Latest Large Truck and Bus Crash Facts

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) recently posted the latest report on large truck on bus crash statistics. Highlights include:

  • From 2007 to 2009, the number of fatal truck-involved crashes fell 31 percent from 4,633 to 3,215.
  • During that same period, the fatal crash rate for large trucks fell 27 percent.
  • Since 2000, the fatal crash rate has fallen from 2.2 crashes per 100 million miles to 1 crash per 100 million miles.

House Committee Prepares to Introduce Energy & Infrastructure Jobs Act

On November 17, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman John Mica (R-Fla.), and other House Republican leaders announced plans to soon introduce H.R. 7, the “American Energy & Infrastructure Jobs Act”. The legislation will include a five-year reauthorization of the surface transportation programs and will allow for expanded offshore oil and gas drilling, oil shale production, and Arctic National Wildlife Reserve oil exploration.

Congress Sends Repeal of 3 Percent Withholding Tax to Obama to Sign

On November 17, the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation to repeal a requirement that would have forced federal, state and local governments to begin withholding 3 percent of payments to contractors in 2013. President Obama said he would sign the bill (H.R. 674), which was broadly supported by contractors.

Employer Health Insurance Premiums Jumped 50 Percent from 2003 to 2010

Premiums for employer-sponsored family health insurance increased by 50 percent from 2003 to 2010, and the annual amount that employees pay toward their insurance increased by 63 percent as businesses required employees to contribute a greater share, according to a Commonwealth Fund report released on November 17. The report found that health insurance costs are outpacing income growth in every state in the country. At the same time, premiums are buying less protective coverage: per-person deductibles doubled for employees working for large as well as small firms over the same time period.

OSHA Posts Most Frequently Cited Crane Standards

According to an Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) report released on October 25, the most frequently cited crane standards are:

  1. 1926.1412(f)(1) – Annual Inspections – At least every 12 months the equipment must be inspected by a qualified person in accordance with paragraph (d) of this section (each shift) except that the corrective action set forth in paragraphs (f)(4), (f)(5), and (f)(6) of this section must apply in place of the corrective action required by paragraphs (d)(2) and (d)(3) of this section.

SC&RA Offers Annual Awards Application Forms Online

SC&RA has posted applications for a number of prestigious SC&RA Annual Awards. These awards will be presented during the SC&RA 2012 Annual Conference, April 17-21, at the Hyatt Regency Lost Pines, Austin, Texas. Opportunities include:

  • Rigging Jobs of the Year, focusing on ingenuity, hard work and a concern for safety. Winners are selected in three categories: Under $150,000, Between $150,000-$750,000, and Over $750,000.
  • Hauling Jobs of the Year, stressing shipment routing, planning, physical elements, safety considerations and execution.

Registration Discounts End Soon for January Board & Committee Meetings

Save $50 per registration by signing up by December 9 for the SC&RA January Board & Committee Meetings, January 4-7, at the Sheraton Hacienda Del Mar, in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Click here to see the roster of attendees, hotel reservation and meeting registration forms, the general schedule, and information about the hotel and travel. Online meeting registration is also available on the website.