The National Safety Council has received a $500,000 grant from the Pittsburgh-based McElhattan Foundation to launch the Work to Zero initiative, which will help educate employers about new technological safety advancements that promise to reduce and ultimately eliminate preventable deaths in the workplace.

NSC also will develop tools and resources for employers who want to integrate potentially life-saving technology, including comprehensive reports and a training program.

“Fourteen people every day go to work and never return to their loved ones,” said NSC President and CEO Deborah A.P. Hersman in a statement.

“Technology holds immense promise when it comes to mitigating human error; we are seeing this on our roadways as our vehicles become more automated, and we can see it in our workplaces, too.

“The National Safety Council is very grateful to the McElhattan Foundation for providing us with the financial tools needed to advance safety in the workplace.”

Fatal occupational injuries in Connecticut rose 25% in 2017, increasing from 28 to 35, while the nation overall saw only a slight decline.

According to the National Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries in 2017 released Dec. 18, 2018, by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 5,147 fatal work injuries nationwide in 2017, a drop of 43 deaths from the 5,190 reported in 2016.

Despite the small overall decline in fatalities, NSC noted in a separate statement that the number of unintentional, preventable occupational deaths actually rose in 2017 to 4,414 from 4,398 the previous year.

NSC plans to leverage The Campbell Institute—its global center for EHS excellence—to pilot technology training programs and evaluate results.

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