NIA Informs
COVID-19 and related information for the insulation industry. Click here to read the latest online.
Free CURT/NIA Webinar Series Part 2: New Challenges and Solutions for Contractors—Greg Sizemore

Wednesday, August 19, 1–2 p.m. ET Click here to register.

To continue the conversation begun in Part 1: How Construction Owners Are Responding to the COVID-19 Crisis, Greg Sizemore, Executive Vice President, Construction Users Roundtable (CURT), will share his owner members’ perspectives regarding the impacts due to virtual inspections, virtual managing, increased offsite construction/modularization, heightened safety requirements, quality concerns, and layoffs, as well as workforce retention. These areas and others may initiate contractual changes, strain relationships, test patience, and most definitely involve change.

Webinar Presenter: Greg Sizemore, Executive Vice President, CURT

Federal Judge Vacates Several Provisions of DOL’s Extended Pandemic Paid Leave

This week, a federal judge in New York struck down several provisions of the Department of Labor’s (DOL's) rule implementing paid family and paid sick leave legislation that was included in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. The ruling comes after the State of New York filed suit in April following the release of the DOL’s final rule on paid sick and paid family leave. The final rule required certain employers to give workers who are quarantined or otherwise showing COVID-19 symptoms 2 weeks paid sick leave, as well as an additional 10 weeks leave for parents or guardians who are caring for sick children at home. Several provisions of the rule were vacated by the judge, including:

  • The provision that allowed employers to withhold the paid leave if they had no work for the employee to perform.
  • The provision requiring employees to seek permission from their employer to take intermittent leave.
  • The provision requiring employees to submit documentation requesting pandemic leave prior to taking the time off.

It is expected that the DOL will appeal the court’s decision. Click here to read the ruling.
DOL Revises Rule Concerning OSHA Access to Employee Medical Records

OSHA has revised the Rules of Agency Practice and Procedure Concerning Occupational Safety and Health Administration Access to Employee Medical Records. The rule describes internal procedures that OSHA personnel must follow when obtaining and using personally-identifiable employee medical information. OSHA has identified and amended several provisions of the regulation to improve efficiency in implementing these internal procedures. The final rule:

  • Transfers the approval of written medical access orders (MAOs) from the Assistant Secretary of Occupational Safety and Health to the OSHA Medical Records Officer (MRO). The MRO is responsible for determining the transfer and public disclosure of personally-identifiable employee medical information in OSHA's possession;
  • Clarifies that a written MAO does not constitute an administrative subpoena; and
  • Establishes new procedures for the access and safeguarding of personally-identifiable employee medical information maintained in electronic form.

To read OSHA's announcement, click here. To read the revised rule, click here.
Quick COVID-19 Construction Resources

Ladder Safety during COVID-19
More regular deep cleaning of ladders is among the tips the Ladder Association has developed for employers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Because physical distancing can be difficult to practice when multiple people are needed to perform certain ladder tasks, including stabilizing and raising the equipment, the association has tips for employers to consider for these activities. Click here to learn more.

Contact Tracing at Construction Sites
Effective contact tracing can be a challenge on construction sites, where supervisors, contractors, workers, vendors, and visitors may be onsite at any given time. The Center for Construction Research and Training recently held a webinar on this topic to discuss challenges and solutions that will help curb the spread of the virus. Click here to read more.

Transportation Infographic
The CDC has created an infographic to share with employees and coworkers for helping to prevent the spread of COVID-19 when multiple employees share company vehicles, carpool, or use public transportation. Click here to learn more.

OSHA Face Covering Guidance for Employers
OSHA generally recommends that employers encourage workers to wear medical masks or cloth face coverings at work to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus. OSHA recently issued frequently asked questions (FAQ) guidance to address inaccurate claims that these masks and face coverings cause unsafe oxygen or harmful carbon dioxide levels for the wearer. Click here to learn more.

ASHRAE Introduces Updated Reopening Guide for Schools and Universities
The ASHRAE Epidemic Task Force has developed guidance on the operation of HVAC systems to help mitigate the airborne transmission of SARS-CoV-2 as schools prepare to reopen for the fall academic year. The 41-page presentation includes convenient checklists to prepare educational buildings to resume occupancy, such as starting up HVAC systems as well as checks and verifications to maintain during the academic school year. The guidance is meant to provide practical information to school districts and university campus environmental health managers, facility managers, administrators, technicians, and service providers. Click here to learn more.
NIA Successfully Launches Virtual Training Courses!

Due to COVID-19, NIA's Thermal Insulation Inspector Certification Program has gone virtual! We were was excited to host our Introduction to Mechanical Insulation course over 2 days this week. The virtual Thermal Insulation Inspector Certification course continues over 2 days next week. If you are interested in becoming a Certified Insulation Inspector, the next online interactive class takes place in October.

This 4-day course will educate participants on how to inspect and verify that the materials and the insulation system have been installed in accordance with the mechanical insulation specifications.

This will include both live and pre-recorded sessions.
  • Part 1 on September 30–October 1: NIA's Introduction to Mechanical Insulation
  • Part 2 on October 6–7: NIA's Thermal Insulation Inspector Certification Course

To become a Certified Thermal Insulation Inspector, class participants must complete both Part 1 and 2, and receive a passing grade on the final examination at the end of each level. All course materials will be shipped to participants before the course.

New Avenues to Connect during COVID-19

In this time of social distancing, are you looking for new ways to promote your brand? NIA is now offering the opportunity to provide branded items (notebooks, pens, hand sanitizer, etc.) to individuals taking NIA's Thermal Insulation Inspector Certification course. This includes online and in-person courses! For more information and pricing details, please contact
Stay Safe with Virtual or Private Hosted Training Courses from NIA

Choose from NIA's Introduction to Mechanical Insulation Course (2-day course) or the full Thermal Insulation Inspector Certification course (4-day course). Both training courses can be held virtually or at the location of your choice and you can invite your employees, members, and guests.

Contact for pricing and more information. Discounted pricing is available to NIA members, Gold-Elite Foundation contributors, and engineers. Click here to download a flyer with more information about the benefits of hosting a course.
Resource: One Free Call with Legal Counsel

For NIA Member Companies on Any Safety Topic
Now through August 31
In the spirit of aiding all of our members during this critical time, NIA Legal Counsel Gary Auman of Auman, Mahan & Furry has offered to respond to 1 safety matter question, per NIA member company, via telephone call or email. Thank you, Gary, for your generosity and your safety expertise.

Contact Auman, Mahan & Furry at 937-223-6003.
NIA Informs Archive

Looking for something you read in NIA Informs? Find past issues on NIA's COVID-19 web page.
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