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Heavy equipment theft rates track with the overall economy, and 2019 was a good year. Many major cities are in the midst of building and road projects, and construction sites are magnets for machinery heists. Tractors and loaders represent the highest percentage of stolen machines, and thieves aren't discriminating between equipment yards or construction sites.

JLG Industries Inc. is working with Construction Robotics of Victor, N.Y., to develop alternative solutions to cumbersome, repetitive construction tasks that oftentimes result in cumulative injury. Construction Robotics specializes in the advancement of robotic and autonomous technologies in the heavy-equipment sector.

Tenna, a construction technology platform for equipment fleet operations, has released new product solutions to address some of the most common problems plaguing jobsite crews, including Maintenance, Reserve It and Safety & Compliance. Tenna's Maintenance feature enables construction companies to manage and control their equipment fleet maintenance remotely, allowing for quick identification of maintenance or repair needs and timely resolutions to many preventable problems that cost crews across the country thousands in lost productivity.

Ramtech Electronics is undergoing a transformation to celebrate its 30th year of empowering customers in the construction industry to save lives, protect assets and gain insight through innovative wireless solutions. Rebranding itself simply as "Ramtech," refreshing the brand's logo and unveiling a sleeker website design are only the beginning.

The Association of Equipment Manufacturers is hosting its annual Product Safety & Compliance Seminar followed by the Product Liability Seminar from April 27-30. Taking place in Itasca, Ill., the returning seminar is designed to offer product safety and compliance professionals in attendance up-to-date information and valuable insights on equipment manufacturing industry standards, regulations and best practices.

With a primary goal of "correcting workplace safety and health hazards and ensuring compliance," OSHA has raised its civil penalties by about 1.8 percent for workplace safety and health violations. The new penalty amounts take effect immediately, applying to any penalties assessed after Jan.

The amount of workplace accidents and fatalities that occur in connection with excavators makes for disappointing and distressing reading. Engcon wants to lead the excavation industry towards zero accidents, a "zero vision" — with smart technology on all excavators.

Construction Safety Week, an annual industrywide education and awareness event originally formed in 2014, is set for May 4-8, 2020. This year's theme is Built on Safety. "This year's Safety Week theme, Built on Safety, provides great opportunities for us to come together and recommit to safety as the foundation of everything we do," said Scott Cassels, Kiewit Corporation executive vice president and 2020 Safety Week executive committee chairman.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration noted recently that highway crash fatalities for the first nine months of 2019 declined by 2.2 percent compared to the first nine months of 2018; a trend that made the third quarter of 2019 the eighth consecutive year-to-year quarterly decline in fatalities since the fourth quarter of 2017.

The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials joined eight other organizations as signatories to a letter sent on Dec. 20 to Congressional committee leaders that seeks the allowance of federal funding for automated speed enforcement of work zones.

AMSTERDAM, N.Y. (AP) The Harrower Pond Dam, cracked and crumbling, with saplings sprouting from its walls, has been repeatedly cited by state and federal inspectors for safety violations over the past four decades. But repairs are unlikely anytime soon because nobody accepts ownership of the 150-year-old dam at a former mill site.