An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

ArticleCS - Article View

NAVFAC Program Awards Funding for Mishap Prevention and Hazard Abatement Projects

21 June 2023

From Christopher Dunne

The competition for funding among countless command priorities is often fierce, leaving commanders and safety experts scrambling for solutions to existing and potential safety hazards. Help is still available when all other internal funding avenues have been exhausted – if you know where to look.

The competition for funding among countless command priorities is often fierce, leaving commanders and safety experts scrambling for solutions to existing and potential safety hazards. Help is still available when all other internal funding avenues have been exhausted – if you know where to look.

The CNO-funded Mishap Prevention and Hazard Abatement (MPHA) program has a $6 million annual budget to pay for critical hazard abatement and mishap prevention projects. Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command (NAVFAC) is executive agent for the program.

MPHA program manager David Halley recognizes the funding challenge. “There’s only so much money to go around,” he said. “Unfortunately, when people think about where to spend it, more immediate challenges take precedence.”

Hazard abatement is the prevention, mitigation, or control of a hazard through any measure or set of measures designed to permanently eliminate hazards, including worker personal protection and safe work practices.

MPHA eligibility is restricted to hazard abatement projects at Navy Operation and Maintenance-funded activities. “The program is intended for commands who have serious mishaps or mishap-causing deficiencies,” Halley said.

Fall Hazard Surveys are one example of a project often supported using MPHA funds. “Every installation is required by instruction to do a Fall Hazard Survey, and to review survey results annually,” Halley said. “Many bases don’t have a Fall Hazard Survey at all, or they have a Fall Hazard Survey that’s 30 years old.”

Program funds paid for a Fall Hazard Survey aboard USS Constitution, where the survey team offered solutions to the unique fall hazards presented by the Navy’s oldest active warship. “Nobody plans money to do a Fall Hazard Survey, so we have a means to fund those,” Halley said.

While most projects are facility or installation-focused, the program has funded Fall Hazard Surveys aboard ship, including USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) and other ship classes. However, “if you want to put a fall protection anchor point on a ship, you have to go through Naval Sea Systems Command,” Halley said.

A different type of project was recently completed in a Naval Air Station Patuxent River aircraft hangar. “Aircraft are fall hazards,” Halley noted. They’re slick, they’re metal, they’re slippery, you have to climb up on them to go to work. But the fall protection system in place was from the 1970s.”

The hangar’s system was upgraded using MPHA funds. “Now when technicians are working on aircraft, they’re a bit safer,” Halley said.
Infrastructure improvements, industrial ergonomics, ventilation, and asbestos abatement projects have all been funded recently through MPHA.

Naval History and Heritage Command (NHHC) has been a frequent recipient of program funds, benefiting from fire door improvements, magnetic door closures, a managed fall protection program, and replacement of a carpenter shop woodworking ventilation system.

In one notable NHHC project, inspections were conducted on nearly 200 vintage aircraft to ensure aircraft are safe for public display.

“NHHC was very fortunate to receive MPHA funding,” Safety Program Manager Sheri Hendricks said. “Through the inspection process, we collected sufficient data to develop acceptance and inspection criteria to ensure current and future artifacts are safe for display.”

The project helped mitigate safety risks for more than a million Navy museum visitors throughout the southeast, Hendricks said.

Another successful project involved a 2019 request from the Aviation Medical Safety Officer for $1 million to purchase medical-grade urinary devices and two-piece flight suits to help female pilots during long flights. The Navy has since allocated funds to provide devices and flight suits for all male and female pilots.

Some mishap prevention projects require the command to submit a case study. “Tell me why you need $10,000 for guard rails,” Halley said. “If it proves out, I can argue your point.”

Halley compared the MPHA to a grant program. “Most people don’t know about the program, so when I bring it to their attention, they want to know what the catch is,” he said. “The catch is, you need to fix the problem.”

While commands are eligible for up to $1 million to prevent or resolve existing hazards, most awards involve smaller sums.

All funding options within the command must be exhausted before applying to the MPHA program. “They should have already asked their command if money is available for the project,” Halley explained. “Money is often available at the command or echelon two level.”

But funds often remain unused, and the program has failed to spend its entire $6 million allocation for the last three fiscal years. Halley said he hates giving money back, especially when he knows there are many unfunded projects that could benefit from the program.

Even if a project is not funded at the time the application is submitted, project applications remain active for about five years. Halley’s advice to anyone thinking about applying? “Don’t be afraid to ask.”

The MPHA program is managed through the Enterprise Safety Application Management System (ESAMS) system. Most of the applications come from safety officers, but anyone with access to the system can apply. For additional program guidelines and requirements, refer to OPNAVINST 5100.23 Chapter 12.

For more news from Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command, visit

Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command is the naval shore facilities, base operating support, and expeditionary engineering systems command that delivers life-cycle technical and acquisition solutions aligned to fleet and Marine Corps priorities. Follow us at, and Read Seabee Magazine online at

This is an Official US Navy Website • Please read this Privacy Policy • GILS NUMBER DOD-USN-000702
NAVFAC Jobs  |  FAQ  |  Search  |  Accessibility  |  FOIA  |  No Fear Act  |  Veterans Crisis Line  |  VA Vet Center  |  FVAP  |  Site Map