HOME BUILDING CAN BE A DANGEROUS business—risks on a jobsite range from electrical shock to being struck by hazards and falls from overhead. One of the most important tools that a builder can give to employees is adequate on-the-job training to prevent workplace injuries. A comprehensive safety program not only saves lives and prevents injuries, it also increases worker productivity and enhances a builder's reputation with trade contractors and other business partners. Significant savings are also possible through reduced workers' compensation costs and improved loss control.

In an effort to increase these critical safety-related benefits throughout the construction industry, the NAHB and the NAHB Research Center have partnered to offer home builder safety and health management seminars. The four-hour seminars, which focus on key safety and health issues, are offered to home builders and trade contractors. They are funded by a grant from the Department of Labor and OSHA and sponsored by the NAHB's local HBAs throughout the United States.

In 12 seminars taking place across the country, from last July through September, attendees receive a student manual and a CD-ROM with a how-to guide that can be customized to meet individual businesses' safety needs. Seminar content will help builders and trade contractors understand their responsibilities, establish effective safety procedures, reduce workers' compensation insurance premiums, and create systems for collecting the information and records required by OSHA and insurance companies.

Every employer is responsible for providing employees with a place to work that is free from recognized safety hazards. This is certainly a challenge in the construction industry, and these seminars can be a big help in establishing a safe workplace environment. For additional information on the program or seminar locations, visit the NAHB Research Center's Web site at www.nahbrc.org/safetyseminars or contact Debi Dean, program coordinator, at ddean@nahbrc.org or 800-638-8556, ext. 6323.