Liberty Mutual and OSHA signed a strategic alliance that will put vital safety information into more employers' hands more quickly. The partnership will help employers improve employee safety and reduce their share of the nearly $1 billion weekly payout for workplace injuries.

As the next step, a joint OSHA and Liberty Mutual team will meet to identify the specific areas of collaboration and research as well as the most effective ways to inform employers about the findings.

The alliance will focus on the leading causes of work-related injuries and how to give employers the information they need to combat them. Slips, trips and falls, for example, cost employers $13.4 billion in 2001, according to Liberty Mutual's Workplace Safety Index.

The alliance might review the findings of the various studies done at the Liberty Mutual Research Institute on how to measure and address floor slipperiness - a leading cause of slips, trips and falls - and develop a range of communications tools on what every employer should know about how floors impact workplace safety.