Boston Implements New Ordinance for Construction and Demolition

November 8, 2023
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The City of Boston recently announced the forthcoming implementation of the Safe Construction and Demolition Operations Ordinance. This ordinance, set to take effect on December 1, 2023, aims to enhance safety in construction and demolition operations, prioritizing the health and welfare of workers and the public.

Mayor Michelle Wu expressed her dedication to the cause, stating, “Every worker deserves to return home safe and healthy each day.” The city worked collaboratively with developers, contractors, the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA), and health and safety advocates to create this comprehensive approach to worker safety.

An Emphasis on On-Site Safety

The ordinance introduces several critical measures, including the requirement for construction and demolition permit applicants to submit a Site Safety Plan Affidavit, implement a project-specific Site Safety Plan, and establish a Site Safety Monitoring Plan. The latter involves conducting Site Safety Orientations and Pre-Shift Safety Meetings and having a Site Safety Coordinator on larger projects. Moreover, the ordinance emphasizes that these safety measures must be communicated in languages understood by the workers to ensure equitable access to these protections.

One of the key aspects of this ordinance is the newfound enforcement capacity granted to the Inspectional Services Department (ISD). ISD can now issue violations, stop work, revoke permits, and impose fines of up to $300 on those found to be in non-compliance. Additionally, Boston Residents Job Policy Construction Monitors and ISD building inspectors have undergone OSHA 30-Hour training to enhance their ability to identify and address unsafe working conditions.

Tools for Safety and Success

The City of Boston goes beyond enforcement, offering training, tools, and resources to facilitate the successful implementation of the ordinance. They have scheduled a series of webinars to inform permit applicants and contractors about the ordinance’s requirements and compliance. Additionally, they are providing free OSHA 30-Hour health and safety training for Site Safety Coordinators and resources for workers to understand their rights and report non-compliant employers.

For more information on the ordinance and the tools and resources available, visit boston.gov/construction-safety.

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