Implementation of NFPA 1500

Technical BulletinLast updated Monday, February 1, 1999
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The Orange County Emergency Services District #1 (OCESD#1) must adopt the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Standard, NFPA 1500 "Standard on Fire Department Occupational Safety and Health Program," to reduce the frequency and severity of job-related injuries (Kerwood, 1998b). The problem was that OCESD#1 did not have a plan on how to implement NFPA 1500. The purpose of this research was to develop a plan for the implementation of NFPA 1500 for OCESD#1. This study used a descriptive research methodology to answer the following questions: 1. What steps are used by OCESD#1 to implement major program changes? 2. How have other Texas fire departments implemented NFPA 1500? 3. What must be included in the OCESD#1 NFPA 1500 implementation plan? A literature review was conducted along with the preparation and distribution of research surveys.These surveys went to 60 randomly chosen members of the Texas Fire Chiefs Association (TFCA) and four management members of OCESD#1. The surveys were used to identify NFPA 1500 or some other major program or program change. The results of the survey indicated that 23.8% of the TFCA respondents implemented NFPA 1500, of which 100.0% indicated successful implementation. All of the OCESD#1 respondents indicated successful implementation of some major program or program change. The recommendations of the research were: 1. OCESD#1 must implement a plan that follows the NFPA 1500 implementation steps identified by Peterson (1997). 2. OCESD#1 management must develop an organizational culture that does not reward or recognize injuries as "part of the job." 3. The membership of OCESD#1 must actively participate in the implementation of NFPA 1500. 4.OCESD#1 must continue to implement the occupational safety and health recommendations established in the previous studies.

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