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Today's News

ISHN delivers breaking news, just-released reports and other current EHS developments to help professionals stay informed.

Errors made in the design of a 174-foot-long pedestrian bridge in Miami contributed to the fatal collapse of the structure on March 15, 2018, according to an investigative update issued today by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). The bridge was intended to let Florida International University students cross safely over a busy highway.

Posted: November 15, 2018, 7:00 pm
A federal jury last week ruled that the company who hired workers to clean up a coal ash spill in Tennessee failed to protect them from the hazards involved. The ruling clears the way for workers affected by the highly toxic substance to seek damages from Jacobs Engineering, the company tasked with cleaning up a massive coal ash spill at the Tennessee Valley Authority's (TVA) Kingston Fossil Plant.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 5:00 pm
Was it drugs or alcohol? A medical emergency? Federal officials aren’t saying, but an air traffic controller at the Las Vegas tower had to be removed from her position last week after she began slurring her words and giving incoherent commands to pilots – then stopped talking altogether.
Posted: November 13, 2018, 5:00 am
The National Toxicology Program (NTP) concluded there is clear evidence that male rats exposed to high levels of radio frequency radiation (RFR) like that used in 2G and 3G cell phones developed cancerous heart tumors, according to final reports released this week.
Posted: November 8, 2018, 5:00 pm

A federal grand jury in the Northern District of Ohio has indicted two managers at Extrudex Aluminum Inc. in Ohio for conspiracy to obstruct justice during a 2012 workplace fatality investigation by OSHA. The agency inspected the aluminum extrusion manufacturer after an employee suffered fatal injuries when a rack containing hot aluminum parts tipped over and pinned him. A second employee suffered severe burns.

Posted: November 6, 2018, 5:00 pm
Extreme weather appears to be a factor in the fatal collapse of a wall Friday night at an Amazon warehouse in Baltimore. Two workers were killed in the incident at the online retailer’s southeast Baltimore fulfillment center, which occurred during a severe storm that tore roofs of apartment buildings in the area and caused a ceiling to collapse at a store, injuring three people.
Posted: November 5, 2018, 2:00 pm
Highway crashes claimed the lives of 37,133 people in 2017, accounting for 95 percent of the 38,958 who died in transportation related accidents that year, according to data provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and released Thursday by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB).
Posted: November 2, 2018, 4:00 am
OSHA is investigating the death of a 56-year old man in an accident yesterday at a Paterson, New Jersey worksite. According to a statement by Passaic County Prosecutor Camelia M. Valdes and Paterson Police Chief Troy Oswald, police responded to the address at approximately 9:18 a.m. in response to a reported construction accident.
Posted: October 31, 2018, 4:00 am
Was a warning sign too small? Too high for a child to see? A single sign at the top of a door warning that passengers should not use the end-of-car doors to pass between cars is part of a National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigation into a recent passenger death involving a Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) subway train.
Posted: October 30, 2018, 2:00 pm
The appropriations bill signed into law last month by President Trump sets OSHA’s FY 2019 budget at $557.8 million – an increase of $5 million from 2018, when the agency received $552.8 million.
Posted: October 29, 2018, 2:00 pm
Although the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has not yet determined a probable cause for a 2017 traffic accident in New Mexico that ultimately killed 8 people, a preliminary report on the incident indicates a tire problem with the truck that was involved.
Posted: October 19, 2018, 2:00 pm
Back in 2012, OSHA aligned its Hazard Communication Standard (HazCom or HCS) with Revision 3 of the United Nation’s Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling (GHS), which resulted in the current HazCom 2012 Standard.
Posted: September 14, 2018, 4:00 am
Human errors lead to a fatal 2017 train accident in South Dakota that killed two BNSF roadway workers, according to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), but the agency ultimately lays the blame on the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), for its inconsistent enforcement of federal regulations.
Posted: September 7, 2018, 2:00 pm
For Ron Hope, value safety manager for Luck Companies, the range of gloves on the market can be confusing. In his industry, the primary wearers of hand impact protection are maintenance workers carrying out tasks involving heavy lifting, handling steel and swinging hammers.
Posted: September 1, 2018, 4:00 am
If you work in safety in a high-hazard industry, would you be worried if your company injury and illness data sat on OSHA’s website to be accessed by the public? Would you fear publicizing the data could damage your company’s reputation?
Posted: August 1, 2018, 4:00 am
The captain of a tourist duck boat that sank near Branson, Missouri July 19 briefed his passengers about how to use life jackets before the amphibious vehicle entered the water, according to National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) technicians, who’ve been studying a recording from “Stretch Boat 7.” Seventeen people died when the amphibious vehicle sank in Table Rock Lake during a severe storm.
Posted: July 30, 2018, 2:00 pm
It’s vital to provide individuals with the anti-fog (AF) lens coating that meets the rigors of the job. But an effective AF coating is only as good as they eyewear it’s on. If workers are uncomfortable in their fog-free eyewear, they’re likely to remove it.
Posted: July 24, 2018, 4:00 am
New Yorkers who were breathing a sigh of relief after a steam pipe rupture in Manhattan last week caused only a few minor injuries have something new to worry about. News sources are reporting that the smoke in the steam released when the 20” pipe burst contained asbestos, raising concerns about the long-term effects of exposure.
Posted: July 23, 2018, 2:00 pm
For the third time in six years, a branch of one of the world’s largest cargo-handling companies has been accused by workplace safety authorities of a willful violation linked to a worker’s death.
Posted: July 18, 2018, 3:00 pm
The statistics are numbing. Drug overdoses killed 64,070 people in the U.S. in 2016. The death toll was up 21 percent over 2015. All indications are it will be even higher when the 2017 numbers are determined, according to the CDC. Overdoses are more than an epidemic; they’re a national crisis.
Posted: July 12, 2018, 4:00 am
One firefighter is dead and six others hospitalized after battling a massive natural gas explosion in Wisconsin yesterday. One civilian was treated and released.
Posted: July 11, 2018, 6:00 pm

ISHN editor Dave Johnson sat down with Rixio Medina, new president of ASSE/ASSP who is overseeing the transition of the organization's new name.

Posted: June 26, 2018, 4:00 am
Lowe's announced this week that sales of paint strippers containing methylene chloride and the solvent NMP will be phased out in its home improvement stores. The toxic chemicals have been blamed in a number of deaths and injuries to both consumers and workers. This story, which was posted on ISHN.com on June 13, 2017, describes how 21-year-old Kevin Hartley died after being overcome by chemical fumes while stripping a bathtub.
Posted: June 1, 2018, 6:00 pm
The Department of Defense (Do) has asked the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for new restrictions on drones over some national “security sensitive” locations, due to the potential threat posed by malicious drone operations. In response, FAA is establishing new or modifying existing restrictions on drone flights up to 400 feet within the lateral boundaries of the following four sites:
Posted: May 23, 2018, 4:00 am
The rapid rise in severe cases of black lung disease has seen a corresponding increase in lifesaving and expensive lung transplants, which are mostly paid for by public insurance, according to a new study by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). Researchers found that the rate of lung transplants related to coal workers’ pneumoconiosis (CWP) has increased nearly threefold.
Posted: May 22, 2018, 6:00 pm
Eighteen of the 21 workers injured in an explosion at a Texas chemical plant on Saturday have been released from hospitals after being treated for burn injuries and injuries from falling off a scaffold, according to news sources. Both the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) and OSHA are investigating the incident at the Kuraray America facility in Pasadena, which may have been caused by a leak of ethylene, a highly flammable gas used in the manufacture of plastics.
Posted: May 22, 2018, 11:00 am
Employees at a Florida health care facility were exposed to verbal threats as well as punches, kicks, bites and other physical assaults – including some using objects as weapons, according to OSHA, which has cited the company for failing to protect its workers from violent mental health patients.
Posted: May 15, 2018, 6:00 pm
Last week’s fatal accident in Florida involving an electrical vehicle is being investigated by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), which is giving special attention to how emergency responders – including firefighters and tow truck operators -- dealt with the electric vehicle battery fire that followed the crash.
Posted: May 15, 2018, 4:00 pm
Southwest Airlines flight 1380 took off normally from LaGuardia Airport on the morning of April 17, 2018 – until there was a sudden change in cabin pressure, the aircraft tilted sharply and a “gray puff of smoke” was seen. Interviews conducted by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) with the crew of the troubled aircraft show how quickly a routine flight can turn calamitous.
Posted: May 4, 2018, 2:00 pm
A flight crew’s decision to continue using visual flight rules when visibility was deteriorating due to weather conditions was a major factor in the October 2016 crash of an airplane near Togiak, Alaska that killed both pilots and the passenger.
Posted: April 30, 2018, 4:00 am

Compliance

Learn about OSHA, EPA, MSHA, NFPA, and ISO standards / enforcement, other U.S. regulators and state / local regulators.

After a six-month investigation, OSHA has issued citations to the employer of an Ohio man killed in a trench collapse last December – and they weren’t the first for the company. In the most recent fatality, JK Excavating & Utilities, Inc. employee Zach Hess died when a trench he was working in collapsed.
Posted: July 6, 2018, 4:00 am
OSHA is postponing enforcement of certain requirements of the final rule on occupational exposure to beryllium in general industry. Requirements originally scheduled for enforcement on June 25 will not be enforced until Aug. 9.
Posted: July 5, 2018, 4:00 pm
Xcel Energy has been cited for three “serious” safety violations in connection with an electrical explosion at its Becker, Minn., power plant last summer that left three workers significantly injured.
Posted: June 25, 2018, 4:00 am
OSHA has cited EnviroTech Services Inc. – based in Greeley, Colorado – after an employee died due to lack of oxygen while cleaning the inside of a railcar. A second employee who tried to rescue the co-worker was also overcome, but survived. EnviroTech Services Inc. faces $64,857 in proposed penalties.
Posted: June 21, 2018, 6:00 pm
A Maine roofing contractor could face prison time if he ignores that latest court order to pay his OSHA fines and correct safety violations that endanger his workers – as he did previous court orders. Between 2000 and 2011, OSHA cited Lessard Roofing & Siding Inc. and Lessard Brothers Construction Inc. for safety violations at 11 different work sites in Maine.
Posted: June 19, 2018, 6:00 pm
Most of the provisions of OSHA’s standard for respirable crystalline silica in general industry and maritime become enforceable on June 23, 2018. The standard establishes a new 8-hour time-weighted average permissible exposure limit, action level, and associated ancillary requirements.
Posted: June 19, 2018, 2:00 pm
If you could prevent 29 worker deaths and 5,842 lost-workday injuries each year1, would you? Those estimates were a major reason OSHA updated 1971’s General Industry CFR 1910 regulations for Walking-Working Surfaces and Personal Fall Protection Systems at the end of 2016.
Posted: June 18, 2018, 4:00 am
OSHA has issued citations to a Wisconsin roofing contractor for exposing its workers to fall and other safety hazards at two different job sites. Proposed penalties are $120,320.
Posted: June 15, 2018, 4:00 am
There is an ongoing debate on how incentives are being used. Incentives should enhance a functional safety program that contains such areas as: return-to-work (RTW), accident investigations, and safety committees.
Posted: June 11, 2018, 4:00 am
Employees at a Wisconsin battery company were exposed to airborne lead at levels 11 times the permissible exposure limit, according to OSHA, which has cited C & D Technologies for two repeated and six serious violations.
Posted: June 8, 2018, 6:00 pm
Because using a ladder is such a familiar skill, it can be easy to overlook the need for safe operating procedures in the workplace. However, ladders continue to be a contributing factor in more than 150 fatalities and 20,000 non-fatal workplace injuries each year.
Posted: June 8, 2018, 4:00 am
General industry and maritime employers must comply with OSHA’s silica standard by June 23, except for phase-in dates for medical surveillance and for engineering controls in the oil and gas industry.
Posted: June 8, 2018, 4:00 am
In recent years, many firms have started to take safety and health more seriously, yet the number of critical violation cases reached a new high in 2017. With 866 cases in which the offender was charged $40,000 or more, it’s clear that compliance is still far from a priority for many businesses.
Posted: June 7, 2018, 4:00 am
An eight-day trial in Billings, Montana last month ended with guilty verdicts against a trucking company and its CEO stemming from a 2012 explosion at an oil and gas processing facility in Wibaux, Mont., that seriously injured three workers. Defendants Woody’s Trucking, LLC and Donald E. Wood Jr. were convicted on 13 of the 14 charges against them, which included conspiracy, wire fraud, mail fraud, and obstruction of justice.
Posted: June 6, 2018, 4:00 am
A New Jersey energy company has wracked up 25 safety violations in the wake of an employee fatality that occurred at the company’s Springfield, New Hampshire plant in November 2017. The EWP Renewable Corp. employee suffered fatal injuries after he was pulled into a conveyer.
Posted: June 5, 2018, 4:00 am
Now that the OSHA rule on Walking-Working Surfaces and Personal Fall Protection Systems (29 CFR 1910 Subparts D&I) has been effective for more than a year, organizations are still working to understand and implement required changes to fall protection projects, policies and programs.
Posted: June 4, 2018, 4:00 am
It seems the same questions are asked every time a new addition of the National Fire Protection Association’s 70E Standard for Electrical Safety in the Workplace (NFPA 70E) comes out.
Posted: June 4, 2018, 4:00 am
Most fear that distracted driving is getting worse. Drivers who report using a cellphone behind the wheel has jumped 46 percent since 2013, and almost half (49 percent) of all drivers report recently talking on a hand-held phone while driving, and nearly 35 percent have sent a text or email.
Posted: June 1, 2018, 4:00 am
Wichita, Kansas roofing contractor Jose Barrientos faces $191,071 in fines after OSHA inspectors observed roofers at a Derby, Kansas, residential site working without appropriate fall protection. OSHA cited the employer for failing to provide adequate fall, eye, and face protection; train workers on fall hazards, ladder usage, and hazardous materials; and clear debris from the work area.
Posted: May 31, 2018, 4:00 pm
A South Florida utility company has been cited for multiple violations, after an employee was killed by a steel plate that fell on him as he installed sewer lines at a Naples Park worksite. Douglas N. Higgins Inc. was cited by OSHA for permitting employees to work in a trench without adequate cave-in protection; failing to provide safe entry and exit from a trench, perform atmospheric testing, and train employees on signals used when moving trench boxes; and allowing employees to use defective equipment to hoist a compactor.
Posted: May 30, 2018, 4:00 am
The amputation of a worker’s fingers in unguarded moving belts and pulleys has resulted in 11 citations and $86,615 in penalties against UMC Acquisition Corp. of Downey, California. California OSHA concluded that the company failed to assess the workplace for hazards, ensure that proper lockout/tagout procedures were implemented, and install guards on moving machinery.
Posted: May 18, 2018, 4:00 am
Changes in the NFPA 70E 2018 edition include new guidelines for selecting personal protective equipment (PPE) and an emphasis on the hierarchy of controls for risk assessment. Here are the key NFPA 70E changes that EHS leaders need to know.
Posted: May 16, 2018, 4:00 am
All Power Construction Corp. of Huntsville, Alabama faces $139,684 in proposed penalties following a trench collapse that killed a temporary employee in November 2017. A staffing company, Labor Finders of Tennessee Inc., has $12,934 in penalties levied against it – the maximum allowed.
Posted: May 15, 2018, 2:00 pm
An OSHA investigation into a fire at a New York State manufacturing facility that claimed the life of an employee uncovered a host of safety hazards – for which the company is facing proposed fines of $281,220. New Windsor-based Verla International LTD was cited by the agency for failing to protect its workers from dangerous chemicals, and other hazards.
Posted: May 14, 2018, 6:00 pm
It’s hard to fathom that in this day and age of real-time data, education and technology, worker fatalities in the U.S. have actually increased (up 7 percent in 2016 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics).
Posted: May 14, 2018, 4:00 am

In May of 2016, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued a final rule “Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses” to revise its recording and reporting occupational injuries and illnesses regulation.

Posted: May 3, 2018, 6:22 pm
California OSHA (Cal/OSHA) has issued four citations and $71,435 in penalties to Consolidated Disposal Services LLC, after a security guard at the company’s dumpster yard in Gardena was fatally struck by a truck while working in the early morning hours.
Posted: May 3, 2018, 2:00 pm
An excavation contractor that exposed its employees to trench cave-in and other hazards is contesting the violations issued to it by OSHA – along with the proposed penalties of $454,750. An OSHA investigation found that while performing work on two municipal water project sites in North Dakota, Kamphuis Pipeline Company failed to:
Posted: May 3, 2018, 4:00 am
The 2022 NESC Revision Submission period opened April 2, 2018, with a deadline of July 16, 2018. Stakeholders are invited to submit edits, changes, and additions for the NESC in order to be considered for inclusion in the 2022 edition, which will be released in August 2021.
Posted: May 1, 2018, 4:00 am
A farm supply company faces more than a quarter million dollars in penalties for failing to take a malfunctioning forklift out of service, despite employees’ complaints about faulty brakes. OSHA has cited Rural King Supply Inc., for failing to maintain forklifts properly at its Xenia, Ohio facility. Proposed penalties are $258,672.
Posted: April 25, 2018, 4:00 pm

Construction Industry Safety and Health

Safety in the Construction Industry covers fall protection, PPE, regulations and best practices.

From east to west, north to south, both federal OSHA and state-level agencies say busy conducting investigations and issuing citations to companies who violate safety regulations. This review of recent cases indicates a variety of citations issued, for confined space, fall and trenching hazards, among others.
Posted: November 20, 2018, 3:00 pm
An OSHA investigation into an accident in which a construction worker had his foot and ankle crushed has led to multiple citations against two companies. The employee suffered the injuries at a Fort Lauderdale, Florida worksite when the lattice boom section of a crane fell on him during disassembly.
Posted: November 19, 2018, 3:00 pm
Holland Township, MN — A man tiling a field in central Minnesota died on Friday morning in a workplace accident. The construction company employee was installing drainage tile in the field near 60th Street SW and 150th Avenue SW in Holland Township when the accident was reported just before noon.
Posted: November 13, 2018, 5:00 pm
OSHA has cited Northeast Framing Inc. – based in Lunenberg, Massachusetts – for exposing workers to falls and other hazards following an employee’s fatal fall at an East Boston, Massachusetts, worksite in May 2018. The company faces $311,330 in penalties, the maximum allowed by law.
Posted: November 12, 2018, 3:00 pm
OSHA yesterday published a final rule that clarifies certification requirements for crane operators, and maintains the employer’s duty to ensure that crane operators can safely operate the equipment. The agency says the regulation will maintain safety and health protections for workers while reducing compliance burdens.
Posted: November 8, 2018, 3:00 pm
Nail gun safety came into focus during a recent Cal/OSHA investigation of an April 17 accident at a Lake Forest worksite in which a carpenter was seriously injured. The worker, who was using an air pressure-powered nail gun to frame wood, was carrying the nail gun in his right hand with his finger on the trigger when a nail was unintentionally discharged into his left arm.
Posted: November 5, 2018, 5:00 am
From R&D specialists to the disposal crew, products and projects often require a village of workers onsite. While some of these workers may be part of your organization, successful businesses often require third-party contractors to better manage resources and deliver quality results.
Posted: October 31, 2018, 4:00 am
OSHA is investigating the death of a 56-year old man in an accident yesterday at a Paterson, New Jersey worksite. According to a statement by Passaic County Prosecutor Camelia M. Valdes and Paterson Police Chief Troy Oswald, police responded to the address at approximately 9:18 a.m. in response to a reported construction accident.
Posted: October 31, 2018, 4:00 am
Legislation to reverse the opioid epidemic, a driverless schoolbus gets a company in trouble and highlights of the NSC Congress & Expo were among the stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: October 27, 2018, 4:00 am
Green construction, or building energy-efficient and sustainable structures, is in high demand. The push for more green buildings has led to construction workers using energy-efficient materials, like spray polyurethane foam insulation (spray foam). This material forms a continuous barrier on walls and corners, preventing moisture from getting inside of structures through cracks and seams.
Posted: October 24, 2018, 2:00 pm
An employee of a Florida roofing company was not wearing fall protection when he plunged to his death at a Maitland worksite. That’s the determination of an OSHA investigation, which found multiple fall-protection violations being committed by the man’s employee, Kasper Roofing & Construction.
Posted: October 22, 2018, 6:00 pm
Drilling into concrete can be dusty, loud, and physically exhausting. It also can expose workers to silica dust from sand and rock, which can damage the lungs if inhaled. Drilling also exposes workers to hand vibration and noise at levels well above recommended limits. Now, two NIOSH-funded studies through CPWR–The Center for Construction Research and Training and the University of California at Berkeley have identified ways to reduce these hazards.
Posted: October 22, 2018, 2:00 pm
The American Society of Safety Professionals (ASSP) has two key questions since the publication of ANSI/ASSP A10.28-2018, Safety Requirements for Work Platforms Suspended from Cranes or Derricks, which applies to platforms that companies suspend from the load lines of cranes or derricks.
Posted: October 22, 2018, 12:25 pm
Veterinarians face a hazmat risk when treating animal patients, truck stops don’t offer healthy options to truckers and OSHA says it’s going after worksites with high injury and illness rates. These were among the occupational safety and health stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: October 20, 2018, 4:00 am
Annually, thousands of construction supervisors take the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) 30-hour outreach-training program to learn how to identify and control occupational hazards. However, until recently it did not include content on leadership.
Posted: October 19, 2018, 4:00 am
An employee at the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) in Austin, Texas, was injured after being ejected from a forklift. OSHA cited the postal service for failing to ensure that forklift operators obeyed traffic regulations. The postal service was also cited for exposing employees to tripping hazards, and failing to label electrical panels and breakers.
Posted: October 17, 2018, 2:00 pm
With powerful machinery and heavy-duty tasks, construction sites are some of the noisiest places. Not only is the industry filled with loud sounds, it is also filled with noise-induced hazards. There are over 30 million construction workers who are exposed to prolonged noise on a daily basis.
Posted: October 17, 2018, 12:14 pm
OSHA has cited a Pennsylvania contractor for health and safety violations following an electrical accident on April 12, 2018 that killed one worker and injured two others. News sources said a crew employed by Pipe Contracting LLC was repairing the sewer system when a machine the workers were using touched a 23,000-volt high-tension line.
Posted: October 16, 2018, 4:00 am
Researchers evaluated work-related injuries involving a hand or fingers and associated costs among a cohort of 24,830 union carpenters in the state of Washington between 1989 and 2008. Hand injuries accounted for 21.1% of reported injuries and 9.5% of paid lost-time injuries.
Posted: October 12, 2018, 4:00 am
If you manufacture head protection, use it on the job or work for a government agency that has a regulatory interest in it, you are invited to help evaluate a voluntary standard for industrial head protection. The International Safety Equipment Association (ISEA) is seeking consensus body reviewers for the proposed reaffirmation of the following standard:
Posted: October 11, 2018, 4:00 am
Boom truck hits power lines in Flagler, electrocuting 2 workers. PALM COAST, Fla. – Two construction workers were electrocuted Monday in an industrial accident in Flagler County, sheriff’s officials said. The men died around 8:30 a.m. on Sebastian Court in Palm Coast.
Posted: October 9, 2018, 4:00 am
Within industries there are multiple hazards that require multiple types of hand protection. That’s one of the key findings of the 2017 PPE Hand Protection CLEAReport from Clear Seas Research, which took a deep dive into the factors that influence hand protection purchasing decisions.
Posted: October 8, 2018, 4:00 am
A government audit gives OSHA’s fatality and severe injury reporting regulation a failing grade; small construction companies get a new safety assessment tool and a survey uncovers shocking workplace violence levels in hospital emergency departments. These were among the top stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: October 6, 2018, 4:00 am
Communication and mentoring are two of the talents that got Tim Manherz, senior vice president of operations at Houston-based TAS Commercial Concrete, a safety award from his industry. The American Society of Concrete Contractors (ASCC) named Manherz this year’s recipient of the ASCC Member Owner Safety Award – an honor that recognizes an owner/executive in the industry who displays a focus and passion for safety, and provides the leadership that creates a best-in-class safety culture.
Posted: October 5, 2018, 4:00 am
A Sauganash, Ill. city water department worker dies after an underground trench collapses around him during a routine project. A man dies after he was trapped in dirt up to his waist while working at a home construction site in Washington State. A Smithton, Pa. teenager dies when the walls of a 10-foot-deep trench collapse on him as he helps install a septic system.
Posted: October 4, 2018, 6:00 pm
There’s a new tool available to help small construction companies and their employees assess and improve their jobsite safety climate. The Safety Climate Assessment Tool for Small Contractors or S-CATsc from the Center for Construction Research and Training (CPWR) lists the eight leading safety climate indicators and related statements.
Posted: October 4, 2018, 2:00 pm
BROOKHAVEN, Miss. — Two police officers were shot and killed following an early Saturday morning confrontation in Mississippi, authorities said. Warren Strain of the Mississippi Department of Public Safety said at a news conference that the officers were called to a house in the city of Brookhaven at about 5 a.m. for a report of shots fired.
Posted: October 2, 2018, 4:00 pm
After a yearlong delay that OSHA said it needed to address stakeholder concerns, employers in the construction industry must comply with a requirement for crane operator certification in the Cranes and Derricks Construction Standard as of November 10. Crane operators are certified (29 CFR 1926.1427), demonstrating sufficient knowledge and skill of the machines they’ll operate through both written and practical tests.
Posted: September 25, 2018, 4:00 am
OSHA is seeking members to serve on its Advisory Committee on Construction Safety and Health. The group advises the Secretary of Labor on developing standards and policies affecting the construction industry. OSHA is seeking employee, employer, state safety and health agency, and public representatives with experience and expertise in construction-related safety and health issues to fill 14 vacancies.
Posted: September 20, 2018, 2:00 pm
Petroleum refineries are laden with various thermal and chemical hazards. Adequate personal protective equipment (PPE) is instrumental in providing a safe work environment for employees to complete the task at hand.
Posted: September 18, 2018, 4:00 am

Facility Safety

This topic deals with machine guarding, housekeeping, forklift safety, showers & eyewashes, LOTO, flooring, fire safety, security, and emergency response.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has issued urgent safety recommendations based on its investigation into the gas explosions and fires that rocked a residential section of a Massachusetts town in September. The incident in Merrimack Valley killed one person, sent at least 21 others to area hospitals and destroyed dozens of buildings.
Posted: November 20, 2018, 5:00 am
OSHA has cited Sabel Steel Service Inc. – based in Montgomery, Alabama – for exposing employees to amputation, fall, and other hazards at four of the company's facilities. The manufacturer faces $320,261 in penalties.
Posted: November 19, 2018, 5:00 pm
Robotics pose safety challenges in the workplace, Tennessee ash coal cleanup workers win a legal victory and an air traffic controller starts slurring her words while on duty. These were among the top occupational safety and health stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: November 17, 2018, 5:00 am
A natural gas leak recently prompted evacuations of workers and road closures at 9th and Locust in downtown St. Louis. A hissing sound could be heard as gas escaped the line. Those who were evacuated could smell the gas.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 7:00 pm
  • Close windows, vents, doors, venetian blinds and heavy drapes. Remove lightweight curtains.
  • Shut off gas at the meter. Turn off pilot lights.
  • Open the fireplace damper. Close fireplace screens.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 6:00 pm
ULT LLC recently introduced the all-new AirQuality Sensor. The sensor is constantly monitoring the concentration of particles on the shop floor at 12’ height, adjusting power of the ULT Airtower according to the workload.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 5:00 am
Mexican authorities in March blamed "asphyxia by inhalation of toxic gases" for the deaths of four Iowa family members vacationing in the Caribbean resort town of Tulum. Members of the Sharp family — identified by authorities in their home state of Iowa as Kevin Sharp, 41, Amy Sharp, 38, and their children, 12-year-old Sterling and 7-year-old Adrianna — were found during a welfare check at the resort condominium they rented.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 5:00 am
A six to an eight-block area of downtown Columbia was evacuated recently due to a gas leak. Road construction workers struck a natural gas line at Legion and N. Main Street around 2:00 pm.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 5:00 am
Carbon monoxide poisoning occurs when carbon monoxide builds up in your bloodstream. When too much carbon monoxide is in the air, your body replaces the oxygen in your red blood cells with carbon monoxide. This can lead to serious tissue damage, or even death. Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless, tasteless gas produced by burning gasoline, wood, propane, charcoal or other fuel. Improperly ventilated appliances and engines, particularly in a tightly sealed or enclosed space, may allow carbon monoxide to accumulate to dangerous levels.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 5:00 am
An Amazon warehouse wall collapses, killing two workers; OSHA issues a final rule on crane operators and managers at one company are indicted for obstructing an OSHA fatal accident investigation. These were among the top occupational health and safety stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: November 10, 2018, 5:00 am
Extreme weather appears to be a factor in the fatal collapse of a wall Friday night at an Amazon warehouse in Baltimore. Two workers were killed in the incident at the online retailer’s southeast Baltimore fulfillment center, which occurred during a severe storm that tore roofs of apartment buildings in the area and caused a ceiling to collapse at a store, injuring three people.
Posted: November 5, 2018, 2:00 pm
Like so many things in life, our most productive work experiences are often a result of our willingness to try something new. In his 1962 book “Diffusion of Innovations,” Everett Rodgers popularized a theory outlining how innovation moves through a social system.
Posted: November 4, 2018, 8:03 pm
Warehouse hazards create more accidents because of the massive quantities of products of all different sizes, shapes and weights stored on shelves, floors and anyplace else someone can find a place to put a box, pallet or carton.
Posted: November 2, 2018, 4:00 am
EAST ST. LOUIS, IL – Two suspects are under arrest after a high-speed chase from Washington Park Illinois into East St. Louis on westbound I-64. KTVI-TV reports around 5 p.m. Saturday, officers from the Washington Park Police Department were chasing two suspects in a vehicle when it struck two cars on the Poplar Street Bridge.
Posted: October 30, 2018, 4:00 pm
Halloween is a fun, festive holiday for kids and adults alike, but it does present potential fire hazards. As the holiday fast-approaches, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) encourages everyone to keep fire safety in mind, and to take simple safety precautions that can help ensure a safe, fire-free day.
Posted: October 26, 2018, 7:00 pm
On Wednesday, Oct. 17, the 470 employees at Perdue’s further-processing operation in Bridgewater, Va., achieved two safety milestones. That’s the day when they reached four million consecutive production hours worked without experiencing an OSHA recordable lost-time case and one year without an OSHA recordable incident.
Posted: October 26, 2018, 4:00 pm
A multi-disciplinary approach and a first year focused on inspections and engagement are two elements of a new Process Safety initiative launched this year by WorkSafeBC, a governmental agency that looks after the safety of workers in the Canadian province of British Columbia.
Posted: October 26, 2018, 4:00 am
Today, the U.S. Chemical Safety Board, as part of its investigation into the May 2017 Didion Mill explosion, issued “Call to Action: Combustible Dust” to gather comments on the management and control of combustible dust from companies, regulators, inspectors, safety training providers, researchers, unions, and the workers affected by dust-related hazards.
Posted: October 24, 2018, 4:00 pm
Every year, one of the most-attended presentations on the expo floor at the NSC Congress & Expo is the announcement of the Top 10 most frequently cited workplace safety violations. This year was no exception as Patrick Kapust, deputy director of OSHA’s Directorate of Enforcement Programs, presented the preliminary Top 10 for fiscal year 2018 to an overflowing room.
Posted: October 23, 2018, 6:00 pm
Warehouses are a key and integral part of your business, but when run poorly, they can be very dangerous places for your workers to inhabit. It's important to regularly assess and appraise how you can improve your warehouse environment to keep your workers safe.
Posted: October 23, 2018, 2:00 pm
Some companies may be reluctant to invite OSHA into a plant voluntarily but Mike DeSoto, chief operating officer of MI Windows and Doors, said the end result is "very worth it." DeSoto spoke at the recent American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) 2018 Fall Conference about the need to implement a culture of workplace safety.
Posted: October 18, 2018, 2:00 pm
An employee at the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) in Austin, Texas, was injured after being ejected from a forklift. OSHA cited the postal service for failing to ensure that forklift operators obeyed traffic regulations. The postal service was also cited for exposing employees to tripping hazards, and failing to label electrical panels and breakers.
Posted: October 17, 2018, 2:00 pm
A new website from the National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA) Manufacturing Sector Council features ways in which businesses and companies can safeguard employees from the release of hazardous energy during service and maintenance activities. This issue was taken up by NORA, the partnership program developed by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) which identifies workplace safety and health issues that require more attention and research.
Posted: October 16, 2018, 6:00 pm
OXEA, part of the Oman Oil Company, is a leading chemicals manufacturer with operations around the globe. Its specialist products go towards making high-quality coatings, lubricants, cosmetics, pharmaceutical products, printing inks and plastics.
Posted: October 16, 2018, 4:00 am
The spectacular series of natural gas blasts and ensuing fires that leveled homes, killed one person and injured 21 others occurred as work crews were in the process of updating the 118-year-old gas distribution system that serviced the area. A preliminary report by the NTSB says the catastrophe occurred after high-pressure natural gas was released into a cast-iron, low-pressure distribution system that had been installed in the early 1900s.
Posted: October 11, 2018, 7:00 pm
Cross contamination is a serious challenge for food processing facilities that manufacture both allergen-free and gluten-free products and those for general consumption. Everything in the facility must be free from contaminants to ensure the safety of these food products.
Posted: October 11, 2018, 4:00 am
The loss of four fingers apparently wasn’t enough to cause a New Jersey pet food manufacturer to correct workplace safety and health hazards identified in two different OSHA investigation. After a follow up inspection to those earlier inspections - surrounding the finger amputations an employee suffered when a batch mixer activated while being cleaned - OSHA cited Hamiltime Herb Co. LLC for failing to:
Posted: October 10, 2018, 2:00 pm
A study analyzing the effect of Right-to-Work (RTW) laws finds a correlation between decreased unionization and a rise in occupational fatalities. The study, published in the medical journal BMJ, looked at the period from 1992 to 2016 and found that RTW laws “have led to a 14.2 percent increase in occupational mortality through decreased unionization.”
Posted: October 9, 2018, 4:00 pm
Baron, the worldwide provider of critical weather intelligence, announces Telematics for Public Safety, a technology that uses accurate, patented technology to aid organizations in keeping their employees, students, and customers safe.
Posted: October 9, 2018, 4:00 am
Amazon, the retail giant which announced this week an across-the-board wage increase to $15 an hour for all employees, must also pay “urgent attention” to workplace safety issues, says the National Council for Occupational Safety and Health (National COSH).
Posted: October 5, 2018, 2:00 pm

Environmental Health and Safety

Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) features news, studies and emerging developments relating to health.

As the wildfires that have claimed at least 56 lives continue to rage across California, the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) is reaching out to the relevant government entities in the state, offering resources on wildfire response, assistance and recommendations for protecting the health and safety of residents and recovery workers.
Posted: November 15, 2018, 3:00 pm
A natural gas leak recently prompted evacuations of workers and road closures at 9th and Locust in downtown St. Louis. A hissing sound could be heard as gas escaped the line. Those who were evacuated could smell the gas.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 7:00 pm
  • Close windows, vents, doors, venetian blinds and heavy drapes. Remove lightweight curtains.
  • Shut off gas at the meter. Turn off pilot lights.
  • Open the fireplace damper. Close fireplace screens.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 6:00 pm
A federal jury last week ruled that the company who hired workers to clean up a coal ash spill in Tennessee failed to protect them from the hazards involved. The ruling clears the way for workers affected by the highly toxic substance to seek damages from Jacobs Engineering, the company tasked with cleaning up a massive coal ash spill at the Tennessee Valley Authority's (TVA) Kingston Fossil Plant.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 5:00 pm
How confident are you that a costly, serious safety event isn’t just around the next corner? If your organization has ever been surprised or caught off-guard by a sudden deterioration in its safety performance, it may be that you’re simply not getting the whole picture when it comes to operational risk.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 5:18 am
If you work in the oil and gas industry, then you know how dangerous the job can be. The conditions can be harsh and the weather unpredictable. Not to mention the hazards that exist with complex industrial equipment. But did you know that one of the most serious hazards you’re exposed to is something you can’t even see? That’s right. The invisible hazards we discuss here are some of the deadliest gases in the industry.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 5:00 am
Pay attention to local air quality reports. Listen and watch for news or health warnings about smoke. If you are advised to stay indoors, keep indoor air as clean as possible. Keep windows and doors closed unless it is extremely hot outside. Run an air conditioner if you have one, but keep the fresh-air intake closed and the filter clean to prevent outdoor smoke from getting inside.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 5:00 am
A tricky thing, disciplining employees. Every safety pro has a story about discipline:“I had to terminate a woman in 1987 because her body odor was so repulsive, affecting other workers (and her boss… me),” says a pro who requested anonymity. “I remember progressive discipline... You bet I asked the HR manager for assistance.”
Posted: November 12, 2018, 5:00 am

The American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA®) and OSHAhave renewed a partnership aimed at fostering safer and more healthful American workplaces. Through the alliance, the two organizations will pursue the following national priorities, among others: young worker health and safety; temporary workers; workplace hazards within emerging industries; disaster preparedness, response and recovery; and opioids in the workplace.

Posted: November 9, 2018, 7:00 pm
Exposure to environmental noise appears to increase the risk of heart attacks and strokes by fueling the activity of a brain region involved in stress response. This response in turn promotes blood vessel inflammation, according to preliminary research to be presented in Chicago at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2018, a premier global exchange of the latest advances in cardiovascular science for researchers and clinicians.
Posted: November 9, 2018, 3:00 pm
Not long ago gloves were considered just another uncomfortable piece of PPE that one was obliged to wear. Leather was the material of choice for premium protection, while less expensive fabric offered basic hand coverage.
Posted: November 4, 2018, 8:28 pm
Like so many things in life, our most productive work experiences are often a result of our willingness to try something new. In his 1962 book “Diffusion of Innovations,” Everett Rodgers popularized a theory outlining how innovation moves through a social system.
Posted: November 4, 2018, 8:03 pm
Class action lawsuits regarding reproductive health rights were recently filed against Walmart, the U.S.’s largest private employer, in Illinois, New York and Wisconsin. Many other employers such as Amazon, Merck and Novartis face similar lawsuits, too, relating to pregnancy discrimination, failure to provide reasonable accommodations and violations of EEOC rules.
Posted: November 4, 2018, 4:00 am
OSHA’s General Industry’s standard for the Control of Hazardous Energy (LOTO) 29 CFR 1910.147 addresses one of the most important safety regulations to protect workers from injury: lockout/tagout. The standard requires workers to isolate energy during servicing and maintenance of machines and equipment to prevent the unexpected startup or release of energy.
Posted: November 4, 2018, 4:00 am
For operations that produce toxic or explosive dusts, it is a priority to keep the workplace safe and compliant. Industrial dust collectors equipped with integrated safety monitoring filters (iSMFs) can isolate dust particulates to ensure that no measurable weight of emissions is discharged.
Posted: November 4, 2018, 4:00 am
Did you know that more people have hearing loss than diabetes, cancer or vision trouble? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, occupational hearing loss, which is caused by exposure at work to loud noise or chemicals that damage hearing, is the most common work-related illness.
Posted: November 4, 2018, 4:00 am
Warehouse hazards create more accidents because of the massive quantities of products of all different sizes, shapes and weights stored on shelves, floors and anyplace else someone can find a place to put a box, pallet or carton.
Posted: November 2, 2018, 4:00 am
Have you ever been in “The Zone”? “The Zone” is described as a tunnel-vision experience and an extreme focus. “The Zone” is reported by athletes, soldiers, and researchers.
Posted: November 2, 2018, 4:00 am
The National Council for Occupational Safety and Health (National COSH) has announced the winners of its 2018 Health and Safety awards, recognizing outstanding contributions towards empowering workers and the fight for safer workplaces and communities.
Posted: November 1, 2018, 4:00 am
From R&D specialists to the disposal crew, products and projects often require a village of workers onsite. While some of these workers may be part of your organization, successful businesses often require third-party contractors to better manage resources and deliver quality results.
Posted: October 31, 2018, 4:00 am
There are numerous job tasks and functions throughout the construction industry that are notorious for producing massive amounts of dust. Typically these jobs involve grinding, sawing, drilling, and chiseling.
Posted: October 30, 2018, 4:00 am
In his mega-popular book Blink, Malcolm Gladwell centers his thesis on the claim that experts come to the point where “they just know.” They develop intuition, based on diligent practice. So experts get the answer without having to go through a step-by-step process of analysis.
Posted: October 29, 2018, 4:00 am
Workers who use hand and/or power tools can expose themselves and co-workers to personal injuries and illnesses such as: lacerations, crushes, burns, amputations; fractures and musculoskeletal disorders; skin and pulmonary illnesses; sight and hearing damage; and electrical shocks.
Posted: October 26, 2018, 4:00 am
Lots happening these days: the grizzly murder of a Saudi journalist, baseball championships (Go Dodgers!!), mid-term elections, Presidential temper tantrums about “Horseface” and “Pocahontas.” The usual. But by far the most important thing happening today is the Fall 2018 Regulatory Agenda. Release of the Regulatory Agenda is a much anticipated (for regulatory geeks) semi-annual event that gives the President the opportunity to boast about his efforts to allegedly “Cut Burdensome Red Tape and Unleash the American Economy.”
Posted: October 23, 2018, 4:00 pm
Veterinarians face a hazmat risk when treating animal patients, truck stops don’t offer healthy options to truckers and OSHA says it’s going after worksites with high injury and illness rates. These were among the occupational safety and health stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: October 20, 2018, 4:00 am
With more options than ever before, safety footwear is anything but a one-size-fits-all purchase. As you evaluate your footwear program, there are many things to think about, such as job-site hazards, seasonal weather exposure and material durability.
Posted: October 18, 2018, 4:00 am
Healthcare workers should recognize the value of the occupational health professionals (OHPs) who are responsible for their health and safety. That message is coming from the Association of Occupational Health Professionals in Healthcare (AOHP) in the form of a Position Statement on The Critical Role of Occupational Health in Healthcare, which seeks to shed light on the vital role OHPs play in the industry.
Posted: October 17, 2018, 4:00 pm
An OSHA health compliance officer (an industrial hygienist -- IH) recently put me in an ethical dilemma. While conducting “side-by-side” air sampling as the employer’s representative during an OSHA inspection, I observed that the OSHA IH was not sampling for asbestos correctly.
Posted: October 16, 2018, 4:00 am
When OSHA revised the walking-working surface standard in 2016, part of the goal was to make the general industry standard more consistent with existing construction standards.
Posted: October 15, 2018, 4:00 am
Cross contamination is a serious challenge for food processing facilities that manufacture both allergen-free and gluten-free products and those for general consumption. Everything in the facility must be free from contaminants to ensure the safety of these food products.
Posted: October 11, 2018, 4:00 am

Government Regulations

Government Regulations provides the latest information about government regulations that address occupational safety and health issues as well as environment and public health issues.

From east to west, north to south, both federal OSHA and state-level agencies say busy conducting investigations and issuing citations to companies who violate safety regulations. This review of recent cases indicates a variety of citations issued, for confined space, fall and trenching hazards, among others.
Posted: November 20, 2018, 3:00 pm
OSHA has cited Sabel Steel Service Inc. – based in Montgomery, Alabama – for exposing employees to amputation, fall, and other hazards at four of the company's facilities. The manufacturer faces $320,261 in penalties.
Posted: November 19, 2018, 5:00 pm
An OSHA investigation into an accident in which a construction worker had his foot and ankle crushed has led to multiple citations against two companies. The employee suffered the injuries at a Fort Lauderdale, Florida worksite when the lattice boom section of a crane fell on him during disassembly.
Posted: November 19, 2018, 3:00 pm
OSHA State Plans: love ’em or hate ’em, but we have to live with them. The Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting, Ohio Valley ReSource and the Center for Public Integrity have just put out a devastating series of articles and audio reports about serious flaws in Kentucky’s state run OSHA program, and raised serious questions about the ability of many of OSHA’s other twenty-seven state plans to protect workers effectively.
Posted: November 16, 2018, 3:00 pm
Without saying why, federal traffic safety officials have quietly altered crash data, revealing that more than three times as many people die in wrecks linked to tire failures than previously acknowledged. For several years, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) stated that the annual death toll from tire-related crashes was 200. Then last year NHTSA abruptly ramped up the estimate, stating on its website that 719 people had died in 2015 in such crashes.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 3:00 pm
Heat stress illness among United States Postal Service employees in Las Vegas has resulted in a $129,336 fine against the USPS. An OSHA investigation revealed that at least four USPS employees at the Silverado Station branch in Las Vegas received treatment for heat-related illness this year, including one hospitalization.
Posted: November 13, 2018, 7:00 pm
OSHA has cited Northeast Framing Inc. – based in Lunenberg, Massachusetts – for exposing workers to falls and other hazards following an employee’s fatal fall at an East Boston, Massachusetts, worksite in May 2018. The company faces $311,330 in penalties, the maximum allowed by law.
Posted: November 12, 2018, 3:00 pm
An Amazon warehouse wall collapses, killing two workers; OSHA issues a final rule on crane operators and managers at one company are indicted for obstructing an OSHA fatal accident investigation. These were among the top occupational health and safety stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: November 10, 2018, 5:00 am

The American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA®) and OSHAhave renewed a partnership aimed at fostering safer and more healthful American workplaces. Through the alliance, the two organizations will pursue the following national priorities, among others: young worker health and safety; temporary workers; workplace hazards within emerging industries; disaster preparedness, response and recovery; and opioids in the workplace.

Posted: November 9, 2018, 7:00 pm
OSHA yesterday published a final rule that clarifies certification requirements for crane operators, and maintains the employer’s duty to ensure that crane operators can safely operate the equipment. The agency says the regulation will maintain safety and health protections for workers while reducing compliance burdens.
Posted: November 8, 2018, 3:00 pm
Over 2400 nurses are victims of workplace violence every year and the number increased 30% since 2012 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Hospitals consider attacks and threats against health care workers to be “part of the job.”
Posted: November 8, 2018, 5:00 am
An Alabama tank cleaning company exposed its employees to multiple confined space, fire and explosion hazards, according to OSHA, which has proposed $171,281 in penalties against American Remediation and Environmental Inc.
Posted: November 7, 2018, 5:00 am
The American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) says the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has presented no scientific evidence for its proposal to let healthcare workers as young as 16 operate power-driven patient lifts without adult supervision.
Posted: November 6, 2018, 7:00 pm

A federal grand jury in the Northern District of Ohio has indicted two managers at Extrudex Aluminum Inc. in Ohio for conspiracy to obstruct justice during a 2012 workplace fatality investigation by OSHA. The agency inspected the aluminum extrusion manufacturer after an employee suffered fatal injuries when a rack containing hot aluminum parts tipped over and pinned him. A second employee suffered severe burns.

Posted: November 6, 2018, 5:00 pm
Following the death of an employee in a trench collapse, Arrow Plumbing LLC has admitted to willfully violating OSHA safety standards by failing to require and enforce the use of trench boxes or other trench protection techniques at a home construction site in Belton, Missouri.
Posted: November 6, 2018, 5:00 am
Breathe easier. We've simplified the respiratory standards. Standards for respiratory equipment continue to evolve. Knowing that you’re up-to-date on the most recent OSHA regulations can ensure your employees' safety and your own peace of mind.
Posted: November 6, 2018, 5:00 am
Nail gun safety came into focus during a recent Cal/OSHA investigation of an April 17 accident at a Lake Forest worksite in which a carpenter was seriously injured. The worker, who was using an air pressure-powered nail gun to frame wood, was carrying the nail gun in his right hand with his finger on the trigger when a nail was unintentionally discharged into his left arm.
Posted: November 5, 2018, 5:00 am

Simply stated, process safety is a management system implemented to prevent major incidents involving hazardous materials. It is necessary for managing complex process operations. An effective process safety management system focuses on three important aspects of your business:

Posted: November 4, 2018, 4:00 am
OSHA’s General Industry’s standard for the Control of Hazardous Energy (LOTO) 29 CFR 1910.147 addresses one of the most important safety regulations to protect workers from injury: lockout/tagout. The standard requires workers to isolate energy during servicing and maintenance of machines and equipment to prevent the unexpected startup or release of energy.
Posted: November 4, 2018, 4:00 am
Firefighters sue over hazmat exposure, the workplace hazards posed by prescription drug use and the key to achieving a work-life balance were among the top stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: November 3, 2018, 4:00 am
A horrifying accident involving a stump grinder has resulted in citations and penalties against a California landscaping company. The April 9, 2018 incident that claimed the life of an Amazon employee occurred when the rope he had around his body became entangled in the Dosko stump grinder and he was pulled into the cutting wheel.
Posted: November 2, 2018, 2:00 pm
In November 2016, the standards for testing against mechanical risks were updated when the market saw a drastic need for improvement in the assessment of personal protective equipment. Since then, an abundance of information has circulated - long technical blogs and whitepapers that can be tedious to read.
Posted: November 2, 2018, 4:00 am
Cal/OSHA on October 18 issued a notice of emergency regulation that would require certain employers to electronically submit their summary of recordable workrelated injuries and illnesses covering calendar year 2017 to federal OSHA by December 31, 2018.
Posted: November 1, 2018, 4:00 pm
Falls are one of the most cited issues by OSHA. With regulations updating frequently since OSHA's 1970 inception, staying in compliance with the rules of fall protection can be a challenge.
Posted: October 30, 2018, 4:00 am
A group of EU worker organizations are calling on the European Commission to better protect workers from the risks related to exposure to reprotoxic substances - chemicals that cause adverse effects on reproduction; including sexual function, fertility and the development of offspring.
Posted: October 29, 2018, 4:00 pm
An OSHA investigation into a fatal incident at an Ohio company has resulted in citations and fines against the company, Globe Metallurgical Inc. OSHA inspectors determined that the employee suffered fatal burns after an explosion from a molten silicon spill.
Posted: October 25, 2018, 2:00 pm
President Trump this week signed into law comprehensive legislation aimed at slowing the nation’s opioid crisis. The 250-page bill called The Substance Use-Disorder Prevention that Promotes Opioid Recovery and Treatment (SUPPORT) for Patients and Communities Act (H.R.6): authorizes $36 million for each of fiscal years 2019 through 2023 to train and resources to first responders and other key community members on protection from occupational exposure to fentanyl and other opioids, and how to respond if an exposure occurs.
Posted: October 25, 2018, 4:00 am
More than 25 patient and consumer groups are warning that Trump administration guidance about Affordable Care Act (ACA) the issued this week will decrease health care protections for people with pre-existing conditions. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) said the guidance will allow states to “move their insurance markets away from the one-size-fits-all rules and regulations imposed by the ACA and increase choice and competition within their insurance markets.”
Posted: October 24, 2018, 6:00 pm
Every year, one of the most-attended presentations on the expo floor at the NSC Congress & Expo is the announcement of the Top 10 most frequently cited workplace safety violations. This year was no exception as Patrick Kapust, deputy director of OSHA’s Directorate of Enforcement Programs, presented the preliminary Top 10 for fiscal year 2018 to an overflowing room.
Posted: October 23, 2018, 6:00 pm
Lots happening these days: the grizzly murder of a Saudi journalist, baseball championships (Go Dodgers!!), mid-term elections, Presidential temper tantrums about “Horseface” and “Pocahontas.” The usual. But by far the most important thing happening today is the Fall 2018 Regulatory Agenda. Release of the Regulatory Agenda is a much anticipated (for regulatory geeks) semi-annual event that gives the President the opportunity to boast about his efforts to allegedly “Cut Burdensome Red Tape and Unleash the American Economy.”
Posted: October 23, 2018, 4:00 pm

Occupational Safety

Learn about the latest safety issues affecting various industries.

From east to west, north to south, both federal OSHA and state-level agencies say busy conducting investigations and issuing citations to companies who violate safety regulations. This review of recent cases indicates a variety of citations issued, for confined space, fall and trenching hazards, among others.
Posted: November 20, 2018, 3:00 pm

Twenty-five years ago, as a young safety professional, I struggled to find a set of leadership practices I could call my own. In 1996, I wrote about many of the leadership practices I was already using but found more clearly established in Servant Leadership (Sarkus, 1996).

Posted: November 20, 2018, 5:00 am
OSHA has cited Sabel Steel Service Inc. – based in Montgomery, Alabama – for exposing employees to amputation, fall, and other hazards at four of the company's facilities. The manufacturer faces $320,261 in penalties.
Posted: November 19, 2018, 5:00 pm
An OSHA investigation into an accident in which a construction worker had his foot and ankle crushed has led to multiple citations against two companies. The employee suffered the injuries at a Fort Lauderdale, Florida worksite when the lattice boom section of a crane fell on him during disassembly.
Posted: November 19, 2018, 3:00 pm
In 2010, the Deepwater Horizon oil tragedy struck and took the nation’s attention for months. Two-hundred million gallons of oil spilled, 16,000 miles is the range it spread across the coastline from Florida to Texas, 8,000 animals were killed, and 11 workers were killed due to the explosion. Communities around the Gulf of Mexico came to a halt, but lurking underneath this disaster was an older spill spewing from an oil platform that was damaged six years earlier.
Posted: November 19, 2018, 5:00 am
Robotics pose safety challenges in the workplace, Tennessee ash coal cleanup workers win a legal victory and an air traffic controller starts slurring her words while on duty. These were among the top occupational safety and health stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: November 17, 2018, 5:00 am
OSHA State Plans: love ’em or hate ’em, but we have to live with them. The Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting, Ohio Valley ReSource and the Center for Public Integrity have just put out a devastating series of articles and audio reports about serious flaws in Kentucky’s state run OSHA program, and raised serious questions about the ability of many of OSHA’s other twenty-seven state plans to protect workers effectively.
Posted: November 16, 2018, 3:00 pm

Although the 2008 death of a Long Island Walmart worker in a “Black Friday” stampede raised awareness of holiday hazards for retail employees, they’re not the only ones at risk during the often frenetic shopping season that precedes the holidays. The spike in merchandise sales also affects workers in the wholesale and transportation industries who fulfill customer orders and deliver packages.

Posted: November 15, 2018, 5:00 pm
UC San Diego Health, the only academic hospital in San Diego, is one of the premier health care providers in the United States and is nationally ranked in six adult medical and surgical specialties by U.S. News & World Report. With more than 1,500 doctors and scientists who are published experts in the field, UC San Diego Health provides unparalleled patient care.
Posted: November 15, 2018, 4:32 pm
The Indiana Department of Labor (IDOL) announced today that all 16 Indiana Cintas Corporation sites have achieved STAR status in the Indiana Voluntary Protection Program for workplace safety and health excellence. Cintas Corporation Location 314 in Evansville is the most recent and final site to achieve the STAR status. Certification in VPP is an achievement that identifies employers who serve as model worksite for Hoosier workplace safety and health.
Posted: November 15, 2018, 5:00 am
Robots are becoming increasingly popular in workplaces around the globe, especially cobots, the machines designed to work next to humans. But when considering implementing any technology, it's essential to keep safety at the forefront. What possibilities exist for robots malfunctioning and hurting people or otherwise compromising worker well-being?
Posted: November 15, 2018, 5:00 am
A natural gas leak recently prompted evacuations of workers and road closures at 9th and Locust in downtown St. Louis. A hissing sound could be heard as gas escaped the line. Those who were evacuated could smell the gas.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 7:00 pm
A federal jury last week ruled that the company who hired workers to clean up a coal ash spill in Tennessee failed to protect them from the hazards involved. The ruling clears the way for workers affected by the highly toxic substance to seek damages from Jacobs Engineering, the company tasked with cleaning up a massive coal ash spill at the Tennessee Valley Authority's (TVA) Kingston Fossil Plant.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 5:00 pm
If you work in the oil and gas industry, then you know how dangerous the job can be. The conditions can be harsh and the weather unpredictable. Not to mention the hazards that exist with complex industrial equipment. But did you know that one of the most serious hazards you’re exposed to is something you can’t even see? That’s right. The invisible hazards we discuss here are some of the deadliest gases in the industry.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 5:00 am
Heat stress illness among United States Postal Service employees in Las Vegas has resulted in a $129,336 fine against the USPS. An OSHA investigation revealed that at least four USPS employees at the Silverado Station branch in Las Vegas received treatment for heat-related illness this year, including one hospitalization.
Posted: November 13, 2018, 7:00 pm
Holland Township, MN — A man tiling a field in central Minnesota died on Friday morning in a workplace accident. The construction company employee was installing drainage tile in the field near 60th Street SW and 150th Avenue SW in Holland Township when the accident was reported just before noon.
Posted: November 13, 2018, 5:00 pm
OSHA has cited Northeast Framing Inc. – based in Lunenberg, Massachusetts – for exposing workers to falls and other hazards following an employee’s fatal fall at an East Boston, Massachusetts, worksite in May 2018. The company faces $311,330 in penalties, the maximum allowed by law.
Posted: November 12, 2018, 3:00 pm
When fire erupted on a passenger vessel cruising Florida’s Pithlachascotee River earlier this year, all aboard had to jump from the burning vessel and wade – or crawl - ashore. One person died and 14 others were transported to area hospitals. The Island Lady was so badly damaged it was declared a total loss.
Posted: November 12, 2018, 5:00 am
A tricky thing, disciplining employees. Every safety pro has a story about discipline:“I had to terminate a woman in 1987 because her body odor was so repulsive, affecting other workers (and her boss… me),” says a pro who requested anonymity. “I remember progressive discipline... You bet I asked the HR manager for assistance.”
Posted: November 12, 2018, 5:00 am
An Amazon warehouse wall collapses, killing two workers; OSHA issues a final rule on crane operators and managers at one company are indicted for obstructing an OSHA fatal accident investigation. These were among the top occupational health and safety stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: November 10, 2018, 5:00 am

The American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA®) and OSHAhave renewed a partnership aimed at fostering safer and more healthful American workplaces. Through the alliance, the two organizations will pursue the following national priorities, among others: young worker health and safety; temporary workers; workplace hazards within emerging industries; disaster preparedness, response and recovery; and opioids in the workplace.

Posted: November 9, 2018, 7:00 pm
From watertight integrity to managing fatigue, the information gleaned from investigations into 41 maritime accidents are now available in one digest intended to provide mariners with information that will help make their operations safer. The National Transportation Safety Board’s Safer Seas Digest 2017, released online yesterday, contains detailed accident investigation reports for collisions, explosions, capsizings and allisions involving fishing, offshore supply, cargo, passenger, tanker, towing and government vessels.
Posted: November 9, 2018, 5:00 pm
Mines can now monitor worker exposure to hazardous respirable crystalline silica (RCS) more effectively, thanks to new software developed by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Mining Program in beta version.
Posted: November 9, 2018, 5:00 am
Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) affect the muscles, nerves, blood vessels, ligaments and tendons. Workers may sustain MSD injuries by lifting heavy items, bending, reaching overhead, pushing and pulling heavy loads, working in awkward body postures and performing the same or similar tasks repetitively.
Posted: November 8, 2018, 7:00 pm
OSHA yesterday published a final rule that clarifies certification requirements for crane operators, and maintains the employer’s duty to ensure that crane operators can safely operate the equipment. The agency says the regulation will maintain safety and health protections for workers while reducing compliance burdens.
Posted: November 8, 2018, 3:00 pm
The “skills gap”—the mismatch between the knowledge, skills, and abilities employers seek in potential employees and the competencies workers actually bring to the job—has been a topic of national conversation, concern, and even controversy for many years.
Posted: November 8, 2018, 3:00 pm
Over 2400 nurses are victims of workplace violence every year and the number increased 30% since 2012 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Hospitals consider attacks and threats against health care workers to be “part of the job.”
Posted: November 8, 2018, 5:00 am
The National Institute for Occupational Safety’s (NIOSH) Total Worker Health® (TWH) model will be the focus of a session at the American Society of Safety Professionals’ (ASSP) Seminarfest 2019 in Las Vegas.
Posted: November 7, 2018, 7:00 pm
Personal flotation devices (PFDs) save lives – especially in the commercial fishing industry, one of the most dangerous occupations, with a fatality rate in the U.S. 29 times higher than the national average.
Posted: November 7, 2018, 3:00 pm
An Alabama tank cleaning company exposed its employees to multiple confined space, fire and explosion hazards, according to OSHA, which has proposed $171,281 in penalties against American Remediation and Environmental Inc.
Posted: November 7, 2018, 5:00 am

Transportation Safety

Transportation Safety covers motor vehicles, railway and air transportation and includes both occupational and non-occupational hazards.

Whether you call it “Drinksgiving” or “Blackout Wednesday,” the meaning is the same. Those terms refer to the night before Thanksgiving, which has become the biggest bar night of the year in the U.S., surpassing even New Year’s Eve. With that distinction comes lots of drinking – including binge drinking – and, unfortunately, a high rate of drunk driving.
Posted: November 16, 2018, 7:00 pm

Errors made in the design of a 174-foot-long pedestrian bridge in Miami contributed to the fatal collapse of the structure on March 15, 2018, according to an investigative update issued today by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). The bridge was intended to let Florida International University students cross safely over a busy highway.

Posted: November 15, 2018, 7:00 pm
Without saying why, federal traffic safety officials have quietly altered crash data, revealing that more than three times as many people die in wrecks linked to tire failures than previously acknowledged. For several years, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) stated that the annual death toll from tire-related crashes was 200. Then last year NHTSA abruptly ramped up the estimate, stating on its website that 719 people had died in 2015 in such crashes.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 3:00 pm
A panel on fan blades. Witnesses who’ll describe a “failure sequence.” Those are just two of the elements that will be featured in the National Transportation Safety Board’s investigative hearing today into an engine failure on a Southwest Airlines plane that killed a passenger. On a flight from New York to Dallas, a fan blade broke, causing a catastrophic engine failure and causing shrapnel to strike the plane, breaking a window. Despite the efforts of her fellow passengers, Jennifer Riordan died after being partially ejected from the plane through the broken window.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 5:00 am
Was it drugs or alcohol? A medical emergency? Federal officials aren’t saying, but an air traffic controller at the Las Vegas tower had to be removed from her position last week after she began slurring her words and giving incoherent commands to pilots – then stopped talking altogether.
Posted: November 13, 2018, 5:00 am
When fire erupted on a passenger vessel cruising Florida’s Pithlachascotee River earlier this year, all aboard had to jump from the burning vessel and wade – or crawl - ashore. One person died and 14 others were transported to area hospitals. The Island Lady was so badly damaged it was declared a total loss.
Posted: November 12, 2018, 5:00 am
Last week was a deadly week for kids at bus stops. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says tragedies in Florida, Indiana, Kentucky, Mississippi and Pennsylvania have left parents without children, and have drastically changed families and communities across the country.
Posted: November 6, 2018, 3:00 pm
Just before a deadly train collision in Granite Canyon, Wyoming, the crew of one of the trains involved radioed the company dispatch center to tell them that due to problems with the train’s airbrake system, they’d accelerated to 50 mph and were unable to stop. The engineer and conductor of that UP freight train would both die a short time later, when their train collided with the rear of a stationary UP freight train.
Posted: November 6, 2018, 3:00 pm
Highway crashes claimed the lives of 37,133 people in 2017, accounting for 95 percent of the 38,958 who died in transportation related accidents that year, according to data provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and released Thursday by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB).
Posted: November 2, 2018, 4:00 am
A broken rail, inadequate track maintenance and inspection, and inadequate federal oversight led to the March 10, 2017, derailment of a Union Pacific Railroad ethanol train near Graettinger, Iowa, according to a National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) report released Tuesday.
Posted: October 31, 2018, 4:00 pm
EAST ST. LOUIS, IL – Two suspects are under arrest after a high-speed chase from Washington Park Illinois into East St. Louis on westbound I-64. KTVI-TV reports around 5 p.m. Saturday, officers from the Washington Park Police Department were chasing two suspects in a vehicle when it struck two cars on the Poplar Street Bridge.
Posted: October 30, 2018, 4:00 pm
Was a warning sign too small? Too high for a child to see? A single sign at the top of a door warning that passengers should not use the end-of-car doors to pass between cars is part of a National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigation into a recent passenger death involving a Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) subway train.
Posted: October 30, 2018, 2:00 pm
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has ordered Transdev North America to immediately stop transporting school children in the Babcock Ranch community in Southwest Florida on the EZ10 Generation II driverless shuttle. The NHTSA says Transdev’s use of the driverless shuttle to transport school children is unlawful and in violation of the company’s temporary importation authorization.
Posted: October 25, 2018, 4:00 pm
Although the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has not yet determined a probable cause for a 2017 traffic accident in New Mexico that ultimately killed 8 people, a preliminary report on the incident indicates a tire problem with the truck that was involved.
Posted: October 19, 2018, 2:00 pm
The cause of a devastating 2017 collision near Concan, Texas between a pick-up truck and a bus came down to items found in the truck’s cab after the crash: marijuana cigarettes and prescription drugs. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has determined that the March 29 accident was caused by the 20-year-old pickup truck driver’s failure to control his vehicle due to his use of marijuana in combination with his misuse of clonazepam, a sedative used to treat seizure and panic disorders.
Posted: October 17, 2018, 4:00 am
A new study concludes that digital billboards attract and hold the gazes of drivers for far longer than a threshold that previous studies have shown to be dangerous. The study, conducted by researchers at the Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute found that drivers looked at digital billboards significantly longer than they did at other signs on the same stretch of road
Posted: October 15, 2018, 6:00 pm
Despite mounting casualties from crashes of recreational off-highway vehicles, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has shot down a proposal to track injuries and deaths involving the popular trail machines.
Posted: October 15, 2018, 4:00 am
If you’re hoping to use your drone to capture images of Hurricane Michael and its effects, better think twice. Drone owners and operators whose vehicles interfere with emergency response areas in hurricane-hit areas could get hit themselves – with a $20,000 fine.
Posted: October 10, 2018, 4:00 pm
Boom truck hits power lines in Flagler, electrocuting 2 workers. PALM COAST, Fla. – Two construction workers were electrocuted Monday in an industrial accident in Flagler County, sheriff’s officials said. The men died around 8:30 a.m. on Sebastian Court in Palm Coast.
Posted: October 9, 2018, 4:00 am
A family in upstate New York is reeling from the loss of four daughters – along with three of their husbands – in a weekend limousine accident that claimed a total of 20 lives. "Twenty fatalities is just horrific," National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) Chairman Robert Sumwalt said at the news conference. "I've been on the board for 12 years and this is one of the biggest losses of life that we've seen in a long, long time."
Posted: October 8, 2018, 12:00 pm
After two years of increases, highway fatalities were down last year - and the trend appears to be continuing in 2018. Data from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) showed that 37,133 people died in motor vehicle crashes on U.S. highways in 2017. That’s a decrease of almost 2 percent from 2016.
Posted: October 5, 2018, 6:00 pm
Take a closer look at how motorcycle licenses are granted and develop standards for crash warning systems. These are among the recommendations from a National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) assessment of motorcycle crashes on U.S. roadways, which claimed 5,286 lives in 2016.
Posted: October 4, 2018, 4:00 am
BROOKHAVEN, Miss. — Two police officers were shot and killed following an early Saturday morning confrontation in Mississippi, authorities said. Warren Strain of the Mississippi Department of Public Safety said at a news conference that the officers were called to a house in the city of Brookhaven at about 5 a.m. for a report of shots fired.
Posted: October 2, 2018, 4:00 pm
As those of you who read my posts on the Lac Megantic disaster where 47 people were incinerated by a “bomb train” that derailed in the middle of town, brakes on trains are complicated and often fallible safety devices. This is how they work: A brake pipe runs the length of the train which supplies air to reservoirs mounted on each of the cars.
Posted: September 28, 2018, 2:00 pm
An organization representing truckers says federal Hours-of-Service (HOS) regulations intended to reduce fatigue and improve safety have actually done the opposite. HOS rules are aimed to reducing driver fatigue that can cause accidents by limiting the number of driving hours per day, and the number of driving and working hours per week.
Posted: September 27, 2018, 4:00 am
An airline crew’s failure to pay attention to important pre-flight information was behind a near-miss at San Francisco International Airport on July 7, 2017. That’s the conclusion of a National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) report on how an Air Canada flight mistakenly lined up with a taxiway instead of the runway it was cleared to land on. Four airplanes were on that taxiway, waiting for clearance to take off.
Posted: September 26, 2018, 6:00 pm
Making sure headlights are aimed where they should be aimed and incorporating collision avoidance technology are two ways to improve pedestrian safety in the U.S., according to a new report from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). The steady increase in pedestrian fatalities caused by vehicle crashes – which have risen every year since 2009 – caused the NTSB to issue a Pedestrian Safety Special Investigation Report based on its investigations into 15 highway crashes between April 24 and Nov. 3, 2016 in which vehicles struck and killed pedestrians. Some 5,987 pedestrians were killed in 2016 because of vehicle crashes.
Posted: September 26, 2018, 4:00 am
A new bill would give feds the legal authority to shoot down drones that are deemed “credible threats” to national security. The problem – say critics – is that the bill doesn't define credible threats or specify target areas. It may also allow the federal government to sidestep laws requiring authorities to get courts for permission to conduct surveillance.
Posted: September 24, 2018, 2:00 pm
A too-large catch was behind the sinking of a commercial fishing vessel last year off the coast of Virginia, according to a National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) report. There were no injuries or fatalities among the crew, but the five people on board the Langley Douglas had to be rescued by a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter.
Posted: September 20, 2018, 6:00 pm
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is warning drone owners and operators they may face significant fines if they interfere with emergency response operations in the areas affected by Hurricane Florence. Many aircraft that are conducting life-saving missions and other critical response and recovery efforts are likely to be flying at low altitudes over areas affected by the storm.
Posted: September 13, 2018, 4:00 pm

Oil and Gas Industry Safety & health

Discussions of key hazards and safety practices in the oil and gas energy extraction and processing industry.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has issued urgent safety recommendations based on its investigation into the gas explosions and fires that rocked a residential section of a Massachusetts town in September. The incident in Merrimack Valley killed one person, sent at least 21 others to area hospitals and destroyed dozens of buildings.
Posted: November 20, 2018, 5:00 am
In 2010, the Deepwater Horizon oil tragedy struck and took the nation’s attention for months. Two-hundred million gallons of oil spilled, 16,000 miles is the range it spread across the coastline from Florida to Texas, 8,000 animals were killed, and 11 workers were killed due to the explosion. Communities around the Gulf of Mexico came to a halt, but lurking underneath this disaster was an older spill spewing from an oil platform that was damaged six years earlier.
Posted: November 19, 2018, 5:00 am
A natural gas leak recently prompted evacuations of workers and road closures at 9th and Locust in downtown St. Louis. A hissing sound could be heard as gas escaped the line. Those who were evacuated could smell the gas.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 7:00 pm
The use of engineering controls and monitoring equipment will go a long way in protecting your employees. But just like any other safety equipment, you must maintain them. Calibrate personal monitors on a regular basis. For the most part, this means at least once every 30 days. Check the manufacturer’s recommendations for your particular monitor.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 5:00 am
If you work in the oil and gas industry, then you know how dangerous the job can be. The conditions can be harsh and the weather unpredictable. Not to mention the hazards that exist with complex industrial equipment. But did you know that one of the most serious hazards you’re exposed to is something you can’t even see? That’s right. The invisible hazards we discuss here are some of the deadliest gases in the industry.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 5:00 am
A six to an eight-block area of downtown Columbia was evacuated recently due to a gas leak. Road construction workers struck a natural gas line at Legion and N. Main Street around 2:00 pm.
Posted: November 14, 2018, 5:00 am
A 46-year-old hockey-playing oilfield worker nearly died last December connecting a hose to a valve at a rural Saskatchewan production operation in February, 2014. His face was sprayed with a mix of gas, water and oil. He inhaled and swallowed it.
Posted: November 5, 2018, 5:00 pm
As oil field-related jobs draw people to Reeves County, Texas, owners of one RV park receive up to 30 inquiries per day. “It is a big problem to find housing here,” said one of the owners. “It’s either extremely expensive, or mostly it’s just not available.”
Posted: November 5, 2018, 4:49 pm
Highway 302, an 83-mile-long, often single-lane road that runs from Odessa, Texas, home to a variety of oilfield servicers, to Loving County, in the western part of the Permian oil field basin, is a stretch that saw traffic jump by 76 percent in 2017, and it's continued to rise this year.
Posted: November 5, 2018, 5:00 am
The rural plains of North Dakota are lonely and unforgiving. This is the flattened, semi-industrial part of the state, where the infrastructure of oil production—oil and natural gas holding tanks connected to pipelines and nearby pump jacks – is omnipresent.
Posted: November 5, 2018, 5:00 am
In the oil and gas industry the higher the rig count shows good signs of an oil boom, but that also means there could be more people in the oil field that lack experience. “Have accidents increased in West Texas and in the nation as a whole for oil and gas? Yeah, absolutely but so has the workload. We have over 1,000 rigs operating in the US," said Chantell Schneider, Pro Mainland Safety.
Posted: November 5, 2018, 5:00 am
One of late summer's more popular and growing events in South Dakota took place in Ellis County on the first weekend in September. The 9th annual White Trash Pasture Party ran Friday, Saturday and Sunday at a location about a half-mile south of Fargo.
Posted: November 5, 2018, 5:00 am
The UN’s International Marine Organization (IMO) is endorsing diver safety proposals from the International Organization of Oil & Gas Producers (IOGP) and the International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA). The IMO voted to approve joint amendments to existing codes on diver safety which will harmonize the codes “with current industry practice.”
Posted: November 2, 2018, 6:00 pm
From R&D specialists to the disposal crew, products and projects often require a village of workers onsite. While some of these workers may be part of your organization, successful businesses often require third-party contractors to better manage resources and deliver quality results.
Posted: October 31, 2018, 4:00 am
Twenty-nine Los Angeles firefighters have filed a lawsuit against Southern California Gas Co., alleging that the utility lied to them about the chemical hazards of a well blowout they responded to in October 2015, resulting in health problems from their exposure to toxins.
Posted: October 29, 2018, 4:00 am
A multi-disciplinary approach and a first year focused on inspections and engagement are two elements of a new Process Safety initiative launched this year by WorkSafeBC, a governmental agency that looks after the safety of workers in the Canadian province of British Columbia.
Posted: October 26, 2018, 4:00 am
Employers’ responsibilities regarding their workers’ mental health, the FDA bans cancer-causing food chemicals and the NTSB issues preliminary information on the investigation into the recent massive natural gas blast explosions in Massachusetts. These were among the stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: October 13, 2018, 4:00 am
The spectacular series of natural gas blasts and ensuing fires that leveled homes, killed one person and injured 21 others occurred as work crews were in the process of updating the 118-year-old gas distribution system that serviced the area. A preliminary report by the NTSB says the catastrophe occurred after high-pressure natural gas was released into a cast-iron, low-pressure distribution system that had been installed in the early 1900s.
Posted: October 11, 2018, 7:00 pm
If you manufacture head protection, use it on the job or work for a government agency that has a regulatory interest in it, you are invited to help evaluate a voluntary standard for industrial head protection. The International Safety Equipment Association (ISEA) is seeking consensus body reviewers for the proposed reaffirmation of the following standard:
Posted: October 11, 2018, 4:00 am

Process safety management (PSM) is a term that is most frequently used in highly hazardous industries like oil refining, gas processing and chemical manufacturing. However, PSM could apply to any industry where people are working in and around any hazardous equipment or environment. 

Posted: October 8, 2018, 4:00 am
As artificial intelligence (AI) systems begin to control safety-critical infrastructure across a growing number of industries, DNV GL has released a position paper on the responsible use of AI. The paper asserts that data-driven models alone may not be sufficient to ensure safety and calls for a combination of data and causal models to mitigate risk.
Posted: September 13, 2018, 4:00 am
A new proposal released by the EPA yesterday would reduce the frequency of methane leak inspections required of oil and gas companies, and give those companies more time to fix leaks when they find them – changes the agency admits could harm public health. The move is the Trump administration’s latest effort to relax Obama-era regulations intended to combat climate change.
Posted: September 12, 2018, 2:00 pm
Digitalization has improved safety over the past three years, even where cutbacks have been widespread, according to 40 percent of those surveyed by DNV GL. “Technology has helped us improve safety monitoring systems; data analytics helps us determine which processes, areas and equipment are more accident-prone; while we have wearable equipment to monitor workers in case they faint or fall,” noted one respondent, Lu Nianming, secretary-general of the China Chemical Safety Association (CCSA).
Posted: September 12, 2018, 4:00 am
Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) has announced that it has appointed Jon Franke to the role of Vice President of Safety and Health for the company, effective Sept. 1. Franke is currently PG&E’s Vice President of Power Generation.
Posted: September 12, 2018, 4:00 am
For the fourth time in the past decade, Dominion Energy Ohio has received the American Gas Association (AGA) Safety Achievement Award for excellence in employee safety. The award recognized Dominion Energy Ohio's 2017 employee safety performance. The award is natural gas utility industry trade group's highest employer safety honor.
Posted: September 12, 2018, 4:00 am
Atlas Oil Company was named the Excellence in Health and Safety award winner and a finalist in the Trucking Company of the Year and Oilfield Services Company of the Year award categories at the 2018 Rocky Mountain Oil and Gas Awards for their outstanding work and impressive safety record in the region.
Posted: September 12, 2018, 4:00 am
Did the cost cutting that came as the result of lower oil prices beginning in 2014 place the oil and gas industry at a higher safety risk? Though the perception is largely positive—49 percent of the respondents in DNV GL’s survey do not think that the focus on profitability in recent years has negatively impacted safety performance—the responses are mixed, with some expressing their concern to the contrary.
Posted: September 12, 2018, 4:00 am
Six awards were handed out at an event held in Aberdeen (Scotland) Exhibition and Conference Centre (AECC). Organized by Oil and Gas UK and Step Change in Safety and sponsored by French oil giant Total, the event honored WorleyParsons’ James Ellerton the award for safety leadership, while William Davidson from Nexen won safety representative of the year.
Posted: September 12, 2018, 4:00 am
A previous NIOSH report (2016)1 described the death of nine oil and gas extraction workers that occurred during gauging or sampling activities at open thief hatches on crude oil storage tanks. Hydrocarbon gases and vapors (HGVs) and associated oxygen displacement were the primary or contributory factors in these fatalities.
Posted: August 30, 2018, 2:00 pm
Noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) among Canadian oil and gas drilling sector workers has increased by 12 per cent, from 33 per cent in 2012 to 45 per cent in 2017, according to hearing-test data collected by employers. Even more alarming: out of the 294 oil and gas drilling workers with NIHL, 194 — 65 per cent — were under the age of 35.
Posted: August 27, 2018, 4:00 am

Top OSHA Violations

In this column, ISHN will report in each issue on one of the 12 most frequently cited OSHA standards.

When OSHA revised the walking-working surface standard in 2016, part of the goal was to make the general industry standard more consistent with existing construction standards.
Posted: October 15, 2018, 4:00 am
When turnaround season comes to your facility, managers and turnaround personnel face a big dilemma: How do you successfully and safely complete the turnaround on a tight schedule?
Posted: October 9, 2018, 1:05 am
OSHA’s hazard communication standard requires employers with hazardous chemicals in the workplace to implement a formal hazard communication program that includes processes for managing and maintaining safety data sheets, container labels, chemical inventory lists, a written HCS plan, and employee training on OSHA’s standard specific to the employer’s work environment. 
Posted: October 8, 2018, 4:00 am
What are the big headlines in the respiratory protection world this year? Here are three areas safety and health professionals are watching closely.
Posted: September 12, 2018, 4:00 am
It’s easy to think of head injuries as catastrophic, and they certainly can be. It’s also easy to think of hard hats as the only head injury prevention solution, and they certainly do provide essential protection.
Posted: September 10, 2018, 4:00 am
If you work in safety in a high-hazard industry, would you be worried if your company injury and illness data sat on OSHA’s website to be accessed by the public? Would you fear publicizing the data could damage your company’s reputation?
Posted: August 1, 2018, 4:00 am
If you could prevent 29 worker deaths and 5,842 lost-workday injuries each year1, would you? Those estimates were a major reason OSHA updated 1971’s General Industry CFR 1910 regulations for Walking-Working Surfaces and Personal Fall Protection Systems at the end of 2016.
Posted: June 18, 2018, 4:00 am
Because using a ladder is such a familiar skill, it can be easy to overlook the need for safe operating procedures in the workplace. However, ladders continue to be a contributing factor in more than 150 fatalities and 20,000 non-fatal workplace injuries each year.
Posted: June 8, 2018, 4:00 am
A worker painting an electric maintenance tower comes in contact with an energized power line and falls 70 feet – striking a second employee working on a lower level and causing him to fall as well.
Posted: July 1, 2016, 4:00 am

Training requirement violations occur in nearly every standard included in OSHA’s top 10 violations list, including fall protection, respiratory protection, lockout-tagout, machine guarding and electrical safety.

Posted: June 1, 2016, 4:00 am
Electrical accidents in the workplace can have horrific consequences.
Posted: May 3, 2016, 4:00 am
Lockout/tagout (29 CFR 1910.147) was the fifth most frequently cited OSHA violation during the period October 2014 to September 2015. There were 3,350 citations reported across all industries during that time with $9,686,894 in penalties.
Posted: April 1, 2016, 4:00 am

When engineering control measures aren’t possible or sufficient to reduce exposure to harmful contaminants such as dusts, fogs, fumes, mists, gases, smokes, sprays, or vapors, OSHA requires – through its 1910.134 standard1 – that workers be provided with respiratory protection.

Posted: March 10, 2016, 7:00 pm

When engineering control measures aren’t possible or sufficient to reduce exposure to harmful contaminants such as dusts, fogs, fumes, mists, gases, smokes, sprays, or vapors, OSHA requires – through its 1910.134 standard1 – that workers be provided with respiratory protection.

Posted: March 1, 2016, 5:00 am
Every year, about 30 million people in the United States are occupationally exposed to hazardous noise. Noise-related hearing loss has been listed as one of the most prevalent occupational health concerns for more than 25 years.
Posted: February 3, 2016, 5:00 am

OSHA standard 1910.305 covers electrical wiring methods, components and equipment for general use.

Posted: December 18, 2015, 5:00 pm

OSHA standard 1910.305 covers electrical wiring methods, components and equipment for general use.

Posted: December 17, 2015, 7:00 pm

OSHA’s respiratory protection standard 1910.0134 was the fourth most-frequently cited rule in fiscal year 2014, a ranking which reflects the importance of respirators among the types of protective equipment for workers who must perform tasks in hazardous environments.

Posted: November 3, 2015, 5:00 am

In fiscal year 2014, OSHA issued 2,396 citations and almost $7 million ($6,891,521)in penalties for violations of its machine guard standard (1910.212), making it the ninth-most violated standard in the time period.

Posted: October 1, 2015, 4:00 am

OSHA’s standard on ladder safety — 1926.1053 — was among the top 10 most-cited violations in fiscal year 2014, with 2,911 citations and 2,267 inspections within that timeframe in all industries.

Posted: August 6, 2015, 4:00 am

OSHA’s standard on ladder safety — 1926.1053 — was among the top 10 most-cited violations in fiscal year 2014, with 2,911 citations and 2,267 inspections within that timeframe in all industries.

Posted: August 3, 2015, 4:00 am

Workers performing tasks while on scaffolding can be exposed to fall hazards involving considerable height, a factor which makes scaffolding-related violations especially serious.

Posted: July 1, 2015, 1:30 pm
Training is an essential component of many of the standards set by OSHA that are most frequently violated year after year.
Posted: June 1, 2015, 4:00 am
Violations related to electrical hazards led to 2,192 citations (from 1,681 OSHA inspections) and a total of $2,817,950 in penalties in 2014, making 1910.303 the eighth most frequently cited standard, according to the agency.
Posted: May 27, 2015, 6:00 pm
Violations related to electrical hazards led to 2,192 citations (from 1,681 OSHA inspections) and a total of $2,817,950 in penalties in 2014, making 1910.303 the eighth most frequently cited standard, according to the agency.
Posted: May 1, 2015, 4:00 am
OSHA standard 1910.147 The control of hazardous energy (lockout/tagout) covers the servicing and maintenance of machines and equipment in which the unexpected energization or startup of the machines ,/p>
Posted: April 1, 2015, 4:00 am
OSHA’s 29 CFR 1910.1200 Hazard Communication Standard was the second most frequently standard cited during fiscal year 2014, right behind fall protection.
Posted: March 3, 2015, 5:00 am
With nearly $20 million in penalties across all industries, fall protection topped the list of OSHA’s most frequently cited standards during fiscal year 2014
Posted: January 5, 2015, 5:00 am
OSHA standard 1910.305 covers electrical wiring methods, components and equipment for general use.
Posted: December 2, 2014, 5:00 am
OSHA penalized employers $1,746,465 for violations of its respiratory protection standard 1910.134 in fiscal year 2013, from October 1, 2012 to September 30, 2013.
Posted: October 29, 2014, 4:00 am

Industrial Hygiene

Anticipated, detection, evaluation and control of hazardous conditions (such as excessive noise) and hazardous substances (such as toxic chemicals).

A 46-year-old hockey-playing oilfield worker nearly died last December connecting a hose to a valve at a rural Saskatchewan production operation in February, 2014. His face was sprayed with a mix of gas, water and oil. He inhaled and swallowed it.
Posted: November 5, 2018, 5:00 pm
As oil field-related jobs draw people to Reeves County, Texas, owners of one RV park receive up to 30 inquiries per day. “It is a big problem to find housing here,” said one of the owners. “It’s either extremely expensive, or mostly it’s just not available.”
Posted: November 5, 2018, 4:49 pm
Did you know that more people have hearing loss than diabetes, cancer or vision trouble? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, occupational hearing loss, which is caused by exposure at work to loud noise or chemicals that damage hearing, is the most common work-related illness.
Posted: November 4, 2018, 4:00 am
The second issue of the American Industrial Hygiene Association’s (AIHA) IH Heroes comic, On the Fly, has won a Platinum Award by the Association of Marketing and Communication Professionals (AMCP) MarCom Awards.
Posted: November 2, 2018, 4:00 pm
Is one of your colleagues deserving of special recognition? Does he or she inspire others in the industrial hygiene and occupational and environmental health and safety professions to reach the next pinnacle in their careers?
Posted: November 1, 2018, 6:00 pm
The American Industrial Hygiene Association® (AIHA) has released the updated Consultants Listing, a searchable print and online directory of its consultant members. Users can search for industrial hygienists and other occupational and environmental health and safety (OEHS) professionals by state and specialty. This list is free of charge for the public and provides users with access to 370 companies who specialize in over 32 OEHS practice areas.
Posted: October 18, 2018, 6:00 pm
An OSHA health compliance officer (an industrial hygienist -- IH) recently put me in an ethical dilemma. While conducting “side-by-side” air sampling as the employer’s representative during an OSHA inspection, I observed that the OSHA IH was not sampling for asbestos correctly.
Posted: October 16, 2018, 4:00 am
From the oil industry to mining, agriculture to research, any working environment that puts employees in close proximity to occupational hazards such as potentially harmful chemicals must make workplace safety a priority. The food processing and packing industries are no exception.
Posted: October 9, 2018, 4:00 am
The study, by Clear Seas Research, was conducted to understand the PPE hearing market by identifying brand usage, exploring important attributes of brand selection for PPE and identifying purchase process trends.
Posted: October 8, 2018, 4:00 am
The International Occupational Hygiene Association (IOHA) has announced that Roger Alesbury MSc, Dip OH, CFFOH will be the recipient of the IOHA Lifetime Achievement Award. The prestigious award will be conferred during the 11th IOHA International Scientific Conference (IOHA 2018), hosted by the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) in Washington, DC in September 2018.
Posted: September 5, 2018, 4:00 pm
Almost every homeowner has a toolbox filled with trusted tools to help get the job done. Tools that are reliable, and trusted to perform time and time again. Tools that are easy to use and don’t require instruction manuals. The same is true for safety professionals who keep people safe.
Posted: August 30, 2018, 4:00 am
OSHA has put together a new set of frequently asked questions (FAQs) and training videos on the agency’s standard for respirable crystalline silica in construction.
Posted: August 23, 2018, 4:00 am
ACGIH® will present The Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS): A Comprehensive Course for Working With Safety Data Sheets (SDS) webinar series beginning on October 2, 2018.
Posted: August 16, 2018, 4:00 am
The workers’ compensation system can be used for more than processing work-related illness or injury insurance claims. The data collected through this system provide valuable information to identify how these injuries and illnesses happen, so that they can be prevented.
Posted: August 15, 2018, 6:00 pm
Noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) is the most common permanent and preventable occupational injury impacting workers today. And unlike most injuries it is painless, progressive, permanent and preventable.
Posted: August 3, 2018, 4:00 am
IQ may be a predictor of who suffers an injury or illness at work. A 68-year population study published in 20171 found that IQ is inversely associated with all major causes of death, including accidents.
Posted: August 3, 2018, 4:00 am
To help prevent injuries and deaths from working with hazardous chemicals, OSHA requires employers to establish a hazard communication program [29 CFR 1910.1200.]
Posted: August 1, 2018, 4:00 am
The American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA®) is pleased to announce they have received two dotCOMM awards, a Platinum award in for their second IH Heroes comic On the Fly and a gold award for AIHA's Annual Report.
Posted: July 30, 2018, 4:00 pm
A work environment may not seem like a confined space at first glance, but the surprising truth is that confined spaces exist in many forms. They are found in nearly every industry. Without a doubt, confined spaces expose workers to very real dangers.
Posted: July 26, 2018, 4:00 am
ACGIH® and its renowned Industrial Ventilation Committee present a popular continuing education course in September. Fundamentals in Industrial Ventilation & Practical Applications of Useful Equations will be held September 17–21, 2018 at the DoubleTree Suites by Hilton Cincinnati-Blue Ash in Cincinnati, Ohio. Earlybirds who register for the course on or before August 20, 2018 will save $100.00.
Posted: July 26, 2018, 4:00 am
ACGIH® announced today the release of its two-tier Under Study list pursuant to changes previously made to its TLV®/BEI® Development Process. In 2006, ACGIH® began providing additional information on the status of chemical substances and physical agents that are on the Under Study list.
Posted: July 26, 2018, 4:00 am
The American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) was recognized twice by both the APEX Awards and the Content Marketing Awards for the IH Heroes Outreach program and the I Am IH™ web series. The American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA®) will receive two APEX Awards for Publication Excellence from Communications Concepts, Inc. AIHA won a Grand Award in the Electronic Media category for the IH Heroes™ comic and a Certificate of Excellence for the IH Heroes™ series.
Posted: July 20, 2018, 4:00 pm
Inhalation of toxic gases can kill you. It’s important that you perpetually monitor your breathing air to ensure that you and your employees are breathing air that is safe and free of such gases all the time.
Posted: July 19, 2018, 4:00 am
If anything has come to define the human experience throughout history, it is a willingness to take risks, to face the unknown with a confidence that borders on arrogance and come out the victor.
Posted: July 16, 2018, 4:00 am
Confined spaces such as tanks, containers and shafts represent a major danger. The good news is that you can significantly reduce the risks involved by understanding these environments and measuring air quality — before entering them. Here’s what you need to know.
Posted: July 13, 2018, 4:00 am
We are the indoor generation. The EPA’s National Human Activity Pattern Survey (NHAPS) conducted 1992-1994 found that Americans spend about 87% of their time in enclosed buildings and about 6% of their time in enclosed vehicles.
Posted: July 5, 2018, 4:00 am
On average, excessive heat causes 650 deaths in the United States every year. Thirty-nine of those took place on the job in 2016 – double the amount that occurred only two years prior.
Posted: June 1, 2018, 10:49 pm
With about a decade to go until I slow down in my career, I’m now at the stage where I want to share what I’ve learned through experience and education. It’s called expatiate. Here are my hard-learned top seven career tips.
Posted: June 1, 2018, 4:00 am
The safety industry has worked diligently over the past decade to improve the effectiveness of refrigerant, toxic and combustible gas sensors. The latest digital technologies have been employed at the sensor and systems levels to add greater intelligence and communications capabilities.
Posted: May 31, 2018, 4:00 am
According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, in 2015 there were 2,905,900 recordable cases of workplace injuries and 4,836 workplace fatalities. All companies should have an Injury and Illness Prevention Program (IIPP) to help identify hazards in the workplace and protect all employees.
Posted: May 29, 2018, 4:00 am

Best Practices

Dan Markiewicz's 30+ years of experience applies best practices to emerging safety and health issues.

Robots are becoming increasingly popular in workplaces around the globe, especially cobots, the machines designed to work next to humans. But when considering implementing any technology, it's essential to keep safety at the forefront. What possibilities exist for robots malfunctioning and hurting people or otherwise compromising worker well-being?
Posted: November 15, 2018, 5:00 am
The National Institute for Occupational Safety’s (NIOSH) Total Worker Health® (TWH) model will be the focus of a session at the American Society of Safety Professionals’ (ASSP) Seminarfest 2019 in Las Vegas.
Posted: November 7, 2018, 7:00 pm
Personal flotation devices (PFDs) save lives – especially in the commercial fishing industry, one of the most dangerous occupations, with a fatality rate in the U.S. 29 times higher than the national average.
Posted: November 7, 2018, 3:00 pm
Like so many things in life, our most productive work experiences are often a result of our willingness to try something new. In his 1962 book “Diffusion of Innovations,” Everett Rodgers popularized a theory outlining how innovation moves through a social system.
Posted: November 4, 2018, 8:03 pm
Class action lawsuits regarding reproductive health rights were recently filed against Walmart, the U.S.’s largest private employer, in Illinois, New York and Wisconsin. Many other employers such as Amazon, Merck and Novartis face similar lawsuits, too, relating to pregnancy discrimination, failure to provide reasonable accommodations and violations of EEOC rules.
Posted: November 4, 2018, 4:00 am
Impacting organizational culture is a long-term, never-ending endeavor. Many companies struggle with maintaining and sustaining cultural initiatives because their impact may not be felt for several years. Culture, as an organizational construct, is a subjective factor not directly measurable by any instrument, survey or metric. Yet, everyone is impacted by culture and can describe when it turns bad.
Posted: November 4, 2018, 4:00 am
Although it’s an intricate piece of equipment with a number of components — including a facepiece, a breathing tube and a blower that passes contaminated air through a HEPA filter — a powered air purifying respirator (PAPR) depends heavily on something fairly ordinary in order to function well: a battery.
Posted: November 4, 2018, 4:00 am
For operations that produce toxic or explosive dusts, it is a priority to keep the workplace safe and compliant. Industrial dust collectors equipped with integrated safety monitoring filters (iSMFs) can isolate dust particulates to ensure that no measurable weight of emissions is discharged.
Posted: November 4, 2018, 4:00 am
Time is money. It’s an old saying that we have heard a thousand times, but why is it so memorable? Perhaps because it’s true. The problem with this maxim is that to save time, people often lose sight of safety
Posted: November 1, 2018, 4:00 am
There are numerous job tasks and functions throughout the construction industry that are notorious for producing massive amounts of dust. Typically these jobs involve grinding, sawing, drilling, and chiseling.
Posted: October 30, 2018, 4:00 am
On Wednesday, Oct. 17, the 470 employees at Perdue’s further-processing operation in Bridgewater, Va., achieved two safety milestones. That’s the day when they reached four million consecutive production hours worked without experiencing an OSHA recordable lost-time case and one year without an OSHA recordable incident.
Posted: October 26, 2018, 4:00 pm
We live in a noisy world. Some noises can damage our hearing, leading to hearing loss, tinnitus (ringing in the ears), and difficulty communicating especially in background noise. Permanent noise-induced hearing damage is incurable.
Posted: October 25, 2018, 6:00 pm
Employers would do well to address social determinants of health (SDH) when deciding upon health insurance and wellness plans, according to a "fast-track" paper in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.
Posted: October 23, 2018, 4:00 am
The American Society of Safety Professionals (ASSP) has two key questions since the publication of ANSI/ASSP A10.28-2018, Safety Requirements for Work Platforms Suspended from Cranes or Derricks, which applies to platforms that companies suspend from the load lines of cranes or derricks.
Posted: October 22, 2018, 12:25 pm
Some companies may be reluctant to invite OSHA into a plant voluntarily but Mike DeSoto, chief operating officer of MI Windows and Doors, said the end result is "very worth it." DeSoto spoke at the recent American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) 2018 Fall Conference about the need to implement a culture of workplace safety.
Posted: October 18, 2018, 2:00 pm
A new website from the National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA) Manufacturing Sector Council features ways in which businesses and companies can safeguard employees from the release of hazardous energy during service and maintenance activities. This issue was taken up by NORA, the partnership program developed by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) which identifies workplace safety and health issues that require more attention and research.
Posted: October 16, 2018, 6:00 pm
An OSHA health compliance officer (an industrial hygienist -- IH) recently put me in an ethical dilemma. While conducting “side-by-side” air sampling as the employer’s representative during an OSHA inspection, I observed that the OSHA IH was not sampling for asbestos correctly.
Posted: October 16, 2018, 4:00 am
Overdose deaths in the workplace increased by 38 percent annual between 2013 and 2016, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics - and they show no sign of slowing down. As the opioid crisis continues unabated, more and more employers are trying to whether or not they should establish a program that would make naloxone available in the event of an overdose.
Posted: October 11, 2018, 4:00 pm
A new guideline intended to reduce one of the most significant workplace violence risks in the healthcare industry has been released. “Violent Patient / Patient Visitor Management” by the International Association for Healthcare Security & Safety (IAHSS) urges Healthcare Facilities (HCFs) to establish specific violence prevention and aggression management policies, processes and practices to deter, identify and manage violent events.
Posted: October 8, 2018, 4:00 am
The term “Safety culture” has become like the term “engagement” in popular management writings. There is no common agreement on the term. We are left with (mis)interpretations of terms like “safety culture,” which lead to haphazard attempts at changing organizations toward improvement.
Posted: October 4, 2018, 4:00 am
When using industrial equipment that emit high voltages, any carelessness in handling electrical transformers can lead to expensive equipment failures and invite unwanted fatalities. This is why inspection of electrical transformers is essential. Regular inspections and periodic maintenance help identify impending issues at the earliest and prevent future problems.
Posted: September 26, 2018, 4:00 am
Use Improved Visual Literacy to deliver enhanced safety performance; advance your safety program; and engage employees. COVE – the Center of Visual Expertise – announces dates for its forthcoming two-day Visual Literacy program. Attendees will have an opportunity to learn: 1) Identify, interpret and act upon visual information; 2) Improve hazard awareness, pre-job analysis, BBS; 3) Enhance risk management and communication; and 4) Mitigate bias and improve decision making.
Posted: September 17, 2018, 4:00 am
According to accidents reported under RIDDOR in 2017, nine percent of fatal injuries were found to be caused by contact with moving machinery. Improving facility safety is critical to safeguard staff, but did you know safety can impact productivity and machine effectiveness too? Here, Jonathan Wilkins, marketing director at obsolete equipment supplier EU Automation, shares his three tips for machine safety.
Posted: September 14, 2018, 4:00 am
Distinct Infrastructure Group Inc. (DIG) recently announced that it has been recognized by the Utility Contractors Association of Ontario (UCA) with the Association's 2018 Safety Performance Award. Each year the UCA recognizes contractors who have demonstrated an exemplary commitment to safety and achieved outstanding safety results. This year DIG was recognized in the category of contractors with over 250,000 hours of work performed.
Posted: September 12, 2018, 1:00 pm
An electrical contractor recently celebrated reaching the milestone of one-million safe working hours. Wayland, Michigan-based Windemuller said in August, 2018 it hit the mark without any recordable OSHA injuries as of July. The company’s streak started in May 2016.
Posted: September 12, 2018, 4:00 am
A decade-old standard developed to help companies with risk management has been revised and adopted as a U.S. national standard. The new version reflects the evolution of risk management from a separate, departmentalized activity to an integrated management competency.
Posted: September 11, 2018, 4:00 pm
Do blue light-emitting diodes (LEDs) affixed to forklifts pose an unnecessary risk? Prompted by employee concerns, a client asked me this question. Choose your answer now, and see if it wavers or changes as you progress through this article.
Posted: September 1, 2018, 4:00 am
Preventive safety evaluations help protect personnel and equipment, cut costly downtime and losses, and minimize liability exposure. This article highlights common areas of hazards in a manufacturing facility, and some potential solutions to explore.
Posted: August 28, 2018, 4:00 am
Roughly 38 million people will commence with a digging project this year without first having underground utility lines marked, and a line is damaged once every nine minutes because someone started digging without first calling 811.
Posted: August 15, 2018, 2:00 pm
IQ may be a predictor of who suffers an injury or illness at work. A 68-year population study published in 20171 found that IQ is inversely associated with all major causes of death, including accidents.
Posted: August 3, 2018, 4:00 am

Electrical Safety

Electrical standards compliance, electrical safety tips, electrical safety trends.

OSHA has cited a Pennsylvania contractor for health and safety violations following an electrical accident on April 12, 2018 that killed one worker and injured two others. News sources said a crew employed by Pipe Contracting LLC was repairing the sewer system when a machine the workers were using touched a 23,000-volt high-tension line.
Posted: October 16, 2018, 4:00 am
When using industrial equipment that emit high voltages, any carelessness in handling electrical transformers can lead to expensive equipment failures and invite unwanted fatalities. This is why inspection of electrical transformers is essential. Regular inspections and periodic maintenance help identify impending issues at the earliest and prevent future problems.
Posted: September 26, 2018, 4:00 am
Although Florence may no longer be a hurricane, the storm still poses plenty of danger for people who are in or will be returning to affected areas. Electrocution, water-borne infections and drowning are among the health risks associated with flooding, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which has issued the following safety tips:
Posted: September 17, 2018, 4:00 am
A Tennessee power company lineman was killed when the lift bucket he was working in suddenly burst into flames. Dean Batey with Duck River Electric was working to repair a security light on a power line pole when the lift bucket he was in caught fire.
Posted: September 12, 2018, 4:00 am
An electrical lineman was blasted earlier this year with thousands of volts of electricity and died of his injuries in North Carolina. T.C. Simpsom was working on a power line in the Mulberry community of Wilkes County, about 80 miles northwest of Winston-Salem, when the accident happened. He died after spending two days in critical condition.
Posted: September 12, 2018, 4:00 am
Numbers from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics put electrical line workers among the top ten most dangerous jobs in the United States. The job of a lineman is fraught with dangers. Utilities are targeting a zero fatality rate, but about 3 million nonfatal recordable incidents were reported in 2014.
Posted: September 12, 2018, 4:00 am
Three University of Idaho graduates have developed a safety device that utility workers clip onto their hard hats. It beeps and flashes when workers approach a high-voltage electrical source, reducing the risk of electrocution.
Posted: September 11, 2018, 6:00 pm
Are you ready for the shift in call-center staffing from mostly humans to largely chatbots? Research firm Gartner predicts that by 2020 customers will manage 85 percent of their interactions with companies without interacting with humans. Utility call-centers dealing with anxious customers calling about service problems might use chatbots to engage in text messaging conversations with customers seeking outage information.
Posted: September 11, 2018, 4:00 am
Most utilities recognize drones can play a role in expediting inspection of infrastructure like transmission lines. Utilities deploy drones after major events, too, such as floods, hurricanes and tornadoes. Industry experts believe within a few years, linemen will carry drones in their trucks and use them like other high-tech tools such as handheld thermal scanners.
Posted: September 11, 2018, 4:00 am
Hazards never stand still — and neither do the NFPA’s standards for preventing them. Is your company up to date on the latest requirements for arc flash and flash fire protection?
Posted: August 21, 2018, 4:00 am
A 21-year-old contract worker in Elkhart, Indiana was electrocuted Friday morning while working on power lines owned by Indiana Michigan Power. News sources say the victim, who was employed by Robert Henry Corp., made contact with an active power line. He died at the scene.
Posted: July 16, 2018, 6:00 pm
Xcel Energy has been cited for three “serious” safety violations in connection with an electrical explosion at its Becker, Minn., power plant last summer that left three workers significantly injured.
Posted: June 25, 2018, 4:00 am
Georgia Power faces $112,000 in proposed fines from OSHA after an arc flash severely burned an electrician at its Bowen plant in the fall of 2015. OSHA’s investigation of the Bowen generating facility resulted in two repeated, five serious, and two other-than-serious safety citations.
Posted: June 25, 2018, 4:00 am
A man who suffered serious burns in a suspected arc flash incident at the Central Norseman gold mine in Australia was reported in a stable condition at a Perth hospital. The Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety confirmed it was investigating the incident.
Posted: June 25, 2018, 4:00 am
An arc flash that burned two contract workers at the Sequoyah Nuclear Plant near Soddy-Daisy, Tennessee was not was not due to any equipment or plant-related issues, according to an investigation by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA).
Posted: June 21, 2018, 4:00 pm
Follow electrical safety procedures to prevent electrical hazards. Electricity used in welding is available as: single phase, 120 Volts (V) or 240 V; and triple phase 575 V in Canada and 480 V in the USA.
Posted: April 24, 2018, 4:00 am
Organizations such as the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH®) and OSHA offer safety guidelines to help employers and workers avoid welding hazards. Employers should ensure all workers have an opportunity to comply with the following important guidelines in the workplace:
Posted: April 24, 2018, 4:00 am
A company with a troubled track record on safety experienced a workplace fatality last week, when an employee died in an apparent electrocution. The Feb. 15 early morning incident at Carbide Industries in Louisville, Kentucky claimed the life of 38-year-old Patrick Childers, according to news reports.
Posted: February 20, 2018, 3:00 pm
Safety professionals, “electrical safety ambassadors” and would-be electrical workers may want to tune into a Twitter Chat next week hosted by the Electrical Safety Foundation International’s (ESFI) Communications Committee.
Posted: February 16, 2018, 5:00 pm
A Minnesota energy company says it will contest the $21,000 in fines leveled against it by the state’s OSHA for an incident at the company’s Becker power plant that left three workers with severe burns over large portions of their bodies.
Posted: February 14, 2018, 5:00 am
For over a decade, thousands of users have deployed Permanent Electrical Safety Devices (PESDs) to reduce the risks in isolating electrical energy. This elegantly simple innovation increases the probability that workers are only exposed to ‘zero voltage’ when doing an absence of voltage test. The cumulative experience end users have amassed by using PESDs encouraged UL to create a new product specification for permanently mounted Absence of Voltage Testers (AVTs).
Posted: January 11, 2018, 5:00 am
From arc flash accidents to electric shock hazards in pools and marinas, here are the top electrical safety stories from 2017 that were featured on ISHN.com.
Posted: December 27, 2017, 5:00 am
An arc flash at the Panda Power station in south Sherman, Texas, sent one employee to the hospital. Sherman Fire says It happened around 7:30 a.m. at 510 Progress Drive in Sherman. The Panda Sherman Power Project is a clean natural gas-fueled, 758-megawatt combined-cycle generating facility. The plant can supply the power needs of up to 750,000 homes.
Posted: December 12, 2017, 5:00 pm
Zach Spicer, a substation supervisor for DES, Dickson County, Tenn., suffered second-degree burns to his face and neck and third-degree burns Aug. 25 afternoon on his hands and forearm at the DES Old White Bluff Substation just as he prepared to teach a class. He was accessing a breaker cabinet, high voltage side when contact or an arc formed, causing an electrical fault that released heat and energy.
Posted: December 12, 2017, 3:00 pm
An arc flash occurs during a fault, or short circuit condition, which passes through this arc gap. The arc flash can be initiated through accidental contact, equipment which is underrated for the available short circuit current, contamination or tracking over insulated surfaces, deterioration or corrosion of equipment and, or parts, as well as other causes.
Posted: December 12, 2017, 5:00 am
Electrical contractors are responsible for the health and safety of employees who are exposed to a variety of hazards. Some of these hazards are obvious, such as electrical shock and electrocution. Others, such as musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs), back injuries, slips and falls, or automobile-related incidents may not be as obvious.
Posted: December 12, 2017, 5:00 am
The US Department of Labor estimates that every day in the United States five to ten Arc Flash Explosions occur on the job. Arc Flashes are incredibly violent and devastating to any worker exposed to the instantaneous phenomenon. Most of the time the exposure will result in serious injury or even death. Electrical equipment is designed to withstand up to a certain amount of current.
Posted: December 12, 2017, 5:00 am
Five to 10 arc flash explosions occur in electric equipment every day in the United States, according to a presentation by Eddie F. Jones, Square D / Schneider Electric, and Progress Energy. This number does not include cases in which the victim is sent to an ordinary hospital. Instead, these incidents are so severe the victims require treatment from a special burn center.
Posted: December 12, 2017, 5:00 am
According to CAGR market research released in December, 2017, one trend in the market is multiple functionalities of arc flash protection equipment. The latest trend in the market is safety equipment with multiple functionalities, i.e., apparel and safety equipment that are not only used for protection against arc flashes but other hazards as well. Vendors offer arc flash protection equipment with a combination of high visibility and flame-resistant (FR) capabilities, providing protection against multi-hazards.
Posted: December 11, 2017, 5:00 am
Severe weather happens year-round. Tornadoes, hurricanes and other storms can seriously damage power lines and other electrical equipment. Storm damage causes dangers that lurk after a storm has passed. Safe Electricity encourages you to be aware of and prepared for those dangers.
Posted: September 18, 2017, 4:00 am