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Business Outlook Conference examines workplace safety, U.S. auto market fundamentals and Big Data

Thursday, July 27, 2017 - 07:00
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Avoiding costly violations, examining fundamentals of the U.S. auto market and analyzing big data in the auto sector were topics of three speakers at the NACE Automechanika Business Outlook Conference today.

Charlie Ayers, president of the Coordinating Committee for Automotive Repair (CCAR), discussed “Staying Compliant: Helping Shops and Distributors Avoid Costly Violations.”

CCAR is a non-profit organization that stays self-sufficient by creating online training around pollution prevention. The organization also developed Hazmat training courses for the North American Automotive Hazmat Action Committee (NAAHAC) in 2005.

CCAR serves mechanical repair shops, collision repair shops, OEM dealers and technical schools. is a new website launched this week featuring a more user-friendly format.

The Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), an agency of the United States Department of Labor, both require that collision and service repair shop operators provide automotive training to their technicians.

OSHA requires staff to be trained before entering the workplace and then annually after that, Ayers said. DOT requires training within 90 days of starting on the job and every three years after that.

The Top 10 workplace violations in 2016 listed by OSHA include seven that pertain to the automotive industry. They are hazard communication (number 2); respiratory protection (number 4); lockout/tagout (number 5; forklifts (number 6); electrical/wiring (number 8); machine guarding (number 9) and other electrical issues (number 10).

Many hazardous materials are commonly found in vehicles, Ayers said. Some of those include batteries (contain sulfuric acid); air bags (compressed gas); shocks and struts (hydraulic fluid and compressed gas); refrigerant (compressed gas); brake accumulators (high-pressure gas); and paint, adhesives and sealants (flammable solvents).

All businesses dealing with the disposal of these items must comply with hazardous material regulations or face stiff fines, Ayers said.

For information about training on handling hazardous materials, visit

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