SAN DIEGO—NAHAD has retooled and renamed its program that focuses on ensuring hose assemblies are done in a safe and proper manner.
The Association for Hose and Accessories Distribution unveiled its Hose Safety Institute, which takes the place of the former NAHAD Listed Member program, at the group's annual convention, held April 2-6 in San Diego.
“It's sort of a rebranding but it's more than that because we're trying to get our commitment to hose assembly safety, quality and reliability—which is sort of a mantra—beyond just the membership of NAHAD,” said Joseph Thompson, NAHAD executive vice president.
The effort to include those outside the organization comes mainly through the formation of the Hose Safety Institute Advisory Council, which will comprise “invited professionals who have particular expertise, experience in, and/or a broad range of perspectives regarding hose safety,” according to NAHAD literature on the Hose Safety Institute.
Council members will come from industry, academia, standards and regulatory bodies, government, and related associations and industry groups.
“They can help us to focus properly on what we're doing, to give us feedback,” Thompson said. “They also can help us to figure out the best way for our members to connect with those various end markets.”
Thompson said there will not be a set number of Advisory Council members, but it's likely there will be somewhere from 12 to 20 individuals representing a variety of industry segments.
NAHAD began the former Listed Member program in 2003 when it wanted to re-craft hose assembly guidelines to be more useful to members and end users. Two years later, it created hose assembly specification guides for hydraulic, industrial, fluoropolymer, composite and corrugated metal hose. In 2009 it added similar guides for ducting and custom made hose.
To become a “Listed Member,” a company had to guarantee that it fabricated all hoses in conformance with those guidelines.
Besides wanting to expand the scope of its hose assembly safety efforts, it was felt the Listed Member name became a bit confusing, Thompson said. It originally was intended to be a name that would be synonymous with quality, much like the UL Listed designation endorsed by Underwriters Laboratories Inc.
But even NAHAD members weren't really clear on the meaning of the name and how it was to impact their business, he said. “Just getting their arms around the terminology was difficult,” Thompson said. “Even if they did know what it meant, it was still sort of internal. It didn't mean anything to customers. There wasn't a good strong connect with the terminology or intent.”
So the association's Strategic Planning Committee has been working to revise the program, and Thompson said it was decided that the emphasis had to be simply on what the group was all about: making sure that hose assemblies were performed in a safe manner, with quality and reliability being top priorities.
The board wanted a brand identity that would resonate particularly in the minds of end users.
“We felt the Hose Safety Institute was a good description of what we are about,” Thompson said. “An institute tends to convey more of an academic or professional stature. And because we have the whole other body of people—the Advisory Council—we thought 'institute' is a good home for that type of activity to take place.”
While the original assembly guidelines were a start to make sure the products are made correctly, the addition of the Advisory Council will give distributors more contacts to get business with end users.
“Having the council engages us as well with manufacturers' engineering people, so distributors will have a wider range of what's possible moving forward,” he said.