The National Safety Council announced that the new proposed voluntary ergonomics standard is now available for formal public comment. The Accredited Standards Committee on Control of Cumulative Trauma Disorders (Z365), accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), has developed the proposed standard entitled Management of Work- Related Musculoskeletal Disorders.

This proposed ANSI standard, unlike the ergonomics standard published recently by OSHA, is a voluntary standard. Ten years in the making, the proposed standard was developed by seeking consensus among those most affected, with committee representatives from business, labor, academia and professional societies. It is intended as a guide for managers and occupational safety and health professionals to voluntarily keep workers safe from work-related musculoskeletal disorders. The National Safety Council voluntarily administers the Z365 committee.

The public comment period is intended to give those not represented on the committee an opportunity to suggest changes to the draft. The comment period will last 60 days and begins with notification in the January 12 issue of ANSI’s Standards Action newsletter. This is the second time a draft of the standard has been available for formal public comment by the committee. After the comment period concludes, the committee will review and respond to each public comment.

A copy of the new proposed American National Standard along with instructions for filing public comments is available from the National Safety Council. Orders are being taken now. Call (800) 621-7619, or visit the Council’s web site at