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Today's News

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

OSHA is investigating a construction accident Wednesday evening in Cleveland, Ohio that claimed the life of a 65-year-old worker. News sources said crews were demolishing a three-story building when the accident occurred. The victim was operating an excavating and other workers were dismantling an elevator shaft when parts of the building fell on the excavator, crushing the man.
Posted: January 18, 2019, 5:00 pm
While unions representing air traffic controllers and aviation safety inspectors are warning that the partial government shutdown is endangering the flying public, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) – which is in partial function mode – is assuring the public that safety “is the top priority.”
Posted: January 15, 2019, 5:00 pm
For the first time in U.S. history, a person is more likely to die from an accidental opioid overdose than from a motor vehicle crash, according to National Safety Council analysis. The odds of dying accidentally from an opioid overdose have risen to one in 96, eclipsing the odds of dying in a motor vehicle crash (one in 103). NSC unveiled the analysis on Injury Facts – the definitive resource for data around unintentional, preventable injuries, commonly known as “accidents.”
Posted: January 15, 2019, 5:00 am

Two UPS employees were rescued this morning after being taken hostage by a gunman who was the ex-boyfriend of one of the hostages. The drama unfolded in the loading dock area at a UPS facility in Logan Township, New Jersey.

Posted: January 14, 2019, 9:00 pm
A crane collapse that caused injuries in New York City last summer has resulted in citations against a Missouri-based contractor. Three construction workers were injured – one critically - when an unsecured mini-crane overturned and fell four stories from an East Harlem worksite on June 25, 2018. The injured included the worker who fell with the crane.
Posted: January 14, 2019, 5:00 pm
The U.S. Department of Labor's Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) reports that 27 mining fatalities occurred in 2018 - the second lowest number ever recorded. Eighteen fatalities occurred at surface operations; nine occurred in underground mines.
Posted: January 14, 2019, 3:00 pm
The U.S. House of Representatives has passed an appropriations bill to fund the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Included in this bill is funding for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), school meals, and other critical nutrition programs, which were set to lose funding next month due to the partial government shutdown.
Posted: January 11, 2019, 7:00 pm
A rookie police officer – on the job for only a few weeks – was shot and killed Thursday night in Davis, California after responding to what appeared to be a routine call. News sources say 22-year-old Natalie Corona answered the call about an automobile accident and was gunned down by a man who opened fire at the scene.
Posted: January 11, 2019, 5:00 am
The circumstances surrounding an accident Monday that claimed the life of a young auto dealership employee have not yet been disclosed by official sources, although a local television station reported seeing a badly damaged bay door at the facility following the fatality.
Posted: January 9, 2019, 7:00 pm
This occupational safety and health standard is intended to address comprehensively the issue of classifying the potential hazards of chemicals, and communicating information concerning hazards and appropriate protective measures to employees, and to preempt any legislative or regulatory enactments of a state, or political subdivision of a state, pertaining to this subject.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries reported 54 fatalities in 2009 from scaffold staging. In a BLS study, 72 percent of workers injured in scaffold accidents said either the planking or support gave way, slipping, or being struck by a falling object. All can be controlled by compliance with OSHA standards.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
Workers servicing or maintaining machines or equipment may be seriously injured or killed if hazardous energy is not properly controlled. Injuries resulting from the failure to control hazardous energy during maintenance activities can be serious or fatal. Injuries may include electrocution, burns, crushing, cutting, lacerating, amputating, or fracturing body parts.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA statistics indicate that there are roughly 85 forklift fatalities and 34,900 serious injuries each year, with 42 percent of the forklift fatalities from the operators being crushed by a tipping vehicle.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
Factors contributing to falls from ladders include haste, sudden movement, lack of attention, the condition of the ladder (worn or damaged), the user's age or physical condition, or both, and the user's footwear.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
The ongoing federal government shutdown is posing a threat to public health, according to the American Public Health Association (APHA). The organization’s executive director, Georges C. Benjamin, identified the Indian Health Service, Food and Drug Administration, parts of the Department of Health and Human Services and the U.S. Department of Agriculture as funding losers due to the shutdown.
Posted: January 2, 2019, 7:00 pm
A drinking fountain in Cleveland Hopkins International Airport may be the culprit behind a half dozen passengers falling ill on a Cleveland-to-Tampa flight yesterday. News sources say six people on a Frontier Airlines flight became sick en route to their destination. Health officials boarded the plane when it landed at Tampa International Airport.
Posted: January 2, 2019, 3:00 pm
Machine safeguarding is the best way to prevent amputations. Guards provide physical barriers to hazardous areas. They should be secure and strong, and workers should not be able to by-pass, remove or tamper. Guards should not obstruct the operator’s view or prevent others from working.
Posted: January 1, 2019, 5:00 am
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has awarded more than $100,000 in grant funding to states through the Governors Highway Safety Association to help combat drug-impaired driving on America’s roads. The funding will support Drug Recognition Expert and Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement training in Delaware, Guam, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Oklahoma, and West Virginia.
Posted: December 21, 2018, 3:00 pm
Work started on Z10 in March, 1999. Almost 100 safety and health professionals spent six years drafting and reworking the document. The Z10 standard for occupational health and safety management systems (OHSMS) is now titled ANSI/ASSP Z10-2012 (R2017).
Posted: December 20, 2018, 5:00 am
OSHA's efforts to revise and update the existing general industry walking-working surfaces standards have been underway since 1973. The final rule incorporates advances in technology, industry best practices, and national consensus standards to provide effective and cost-efficient worker protection.
Posted: December 20, 2018, 5:00 am
The International Safety Equipment Association (ISEA) reports struck-by falling objects result in hundreds of fatalities annually and thousands of injuries. In 2016, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported 255 fatalities and 47,920 injuries from dropped objects in the United States.
Posted: December 20, 2018, 5:00 am
The standard provides requirements for managing combustible dust fire and explosion hazards. It directs the users to appropriate NFPA industry or commodity-specific standards by establishing a relationship and hierarchy between them.
Posted: December 20, 2018, 5:00 am
An advisory by U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams prompted by the skyrocketing rates of e-cigarette use among teens warns parents that any use of e-cigarettes is dangerous. “E-cigarette aerosol is not harmless,” said the Surgeon General. “Most e-cigarettes contain nicotine – the addictive drug in regular cigarettes, cigars, and other tobacco products. Nicotine exposure during adolescence can harm the developing brain – which continues to develop until about age 25.”
Posted: December 19, 2018, 4:00 pm
A film crew employee who was placing traffic cones last week at a Brooklyn location where a TV show was set to film was struck and killed by a co-worker, according to news sources. The early morning incident took the life of Pedro Jimenez, 63.
Posted: December 17, 2018, 3:00 pm
After being trapped inside an abandoned mine in West Virginia for days, three people were found alive and in good condition yesterday. News sources say Kayla Williams, 25, Erica Treadway, 31, and Cody Beverly, 21 – who had entered the Elk Run Coal’s Rock House Powellton mine near Clear Creek illegally – were located on day four of a search coordinated by the West Virginia Office of Miners’ Health, Safety and Training.
Posted: December 13, 2018, 8:00 am

An urgent search and rescue operation going on in an underground West Virginia mine right now is atypical: the Rock House Powellton mine is inactive and the missing people are not mine employees. A West Virginia mine rescue team is attempting to find and rescue three young people who reportedly entered the sealed mine illegally, leaving an all-terrain vehicle near its entrance.

Posted: December 12, 2018, 5:00 am
One month after ISHN published its October issue cover story on Tesla’s quest to have the safest factory in the world, Tesla’s safety and health practices were again in the news. On November 5, 2018, the Center for Investigative Reporting published an article, “Inside Tesla’s factory, a medical clinic designed to ignore injured workers.”
Posted: December 12, 2018, 5:00 am
A young Google software engineer died at his desk Friday night in the company’s New York headquarters. News sources say 22-year-old Scott Krulcik was found unconscious at his work terminal at approximately 9 p.m. by a janitor. Emergency responders performed CPR but were unable to revive Krulcik. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Posted: December 10, 2018, 5:00 pm

The EPA’s proposed rollback of Obama-era limits on greenhouse gases emitted by coal-fired plants is drawing opposition from health and environmental groups. At issue: Carbon Pollution Standards for New, Modified and Reconstructed Power Plants, enacted in 2015, which were intended to slow climate change and reduce its effects.

Posted: December 7, 2018, 7:00 pm
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has released its first unmanned robotics guidance for first responders and others. NFPA 2400®, Standard for Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (sUAS) Used for Public Safety Operations was developed by representatives from public safety departments with unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), including the fire service, law enforcement, and emergency medical services.
Posted: December 7, 2018, 5:00 pm

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.

An environmentally friendly diet proposed by scientists that would radically transform food production and the types of food we eat; how the shutdown is affecting federal workers’ mental health and a look back at one of the strangest and deadliest industrial disasters in U.S. history. These were among the top stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: January 19, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA is investigating a construction accident Wednesday evening in Cleveland, Ohio that claimed the life of a 65-year-old worker. News sources said crews were demolishing a three-story building when the accident occurred. The victim was operating an excavating and other workers were dismantling an elevator shaft when parts of the building fell on the excavator, crushing the man.
Posted: January 18, 2019, 5:00 pm
OSHA has cited RKM Utility Services Inc. for failing to protect workers from hydrogen sulfide after an employee died after exposure to dangerous levels of the gas while working in a trench in Dallas, Texas.
Posted: January 18, 2019, 5:00 am
A crane collapse that caused injuries in New York City last summer has resulted in citations against a Missouri-based contractor. Three construction workers were injured – one critically - when an unsecured mini-crane overturned and fell four stories from an East Harlem worksite on June 25, 2018. The injured included the worker who fell with the crane.
Posted: January 14, 2019, 5:00 pm
A foodborne illness outbreak, a worker fatality at a car dealership and the first-ever public agenda issued by AIHA were among the top occupational safety and health stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: January 12, 2019, 5:00 am
Released in Q3 of 2018, ANSI/ISEA 121-2018, American National Standard for Dropped Object Prevention Solutions, is the first standard of its type for dropped and falling objects prevention equipment – establishing minimum design, performance, and labeling requirements for product solutions and guidelines for testing.
Posted: January 11, 2019, 5:00 am
A fall, a vehicle accident and a drowning during the second week of the new year claimed the lives of two construction workers and left a third hospitalized with critical injuries. In Orlando, Florida news sources say a worker employed by I-4 Ultimate fell 50 feet at a jobsite Monday afternoon.
Posted: January 10, 2019, 5:00 pm

A field test that involved placing an N95 respirator-wearing manikin at multiple sites and testing exposures using a nanoparticle counter found that while the respirator reduced exposures, in many situations it did not provide 95% protection.

Posted: January 9, 2019, 3:00 pm
OSHA has cited Franklin County Construction LLC – based in New Haven, Missouri – after an employee suffered fatal fall injuries when a roof truss collapsed. The employee was part of a crew installing prefabricated roof trusses onto a commercial building under construction in Bowling Green, Missouri.
Posted: January 8, 2019, 7:00 pm
OSHA requires employers to ensure the safety of all employees in the work environment. Eye and face protection must be provided whenever necessary to protect against chemical, environmental, radiological or mechanical irritants and hazards.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
It’s a new year, and in many ways a fresh start; but not for the NORA (National Occupational Research Agenda) councils that continue to build on the efforts of the past two years. The ten sector councils from the second decade of NORA carried forward their work to improve occupational safety and health in industry sectors.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA has cited roofing company Aspen Contracting Inc. – based in Lee’s Summit, Missouri – and subcontractor J Cuellar LLC – based in West Bend, Wisconsin – for exposing employees to dangerous fall hazards at a Fountain, Colorado construction site. The companies face proposed penalties totaling $147, 998.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 5:00 pm
Any entity doing construction work, such as building a new structure or upgrading an old one, must follow the construction confined space rule. Because the new rule applies to all employers who perform construction activities in a confined space, safety managers in all industries should become familiar with the standard.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 5:00 am
Stories related to construction industry safety ranged this year from hazard-specific (spray foam insulation, concrete drilling) to regulations (silica, crane operator certification) to developments that affect construction safety in a more general way, like the workforce shortage or the legalization of marijuana in many states. Here’s a look back at 2018 articles:
Posted: December 26, 2018, 5:00 am
Statistics released yesterday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) showed that workplace fatalities declined by less than one percent in 2017. The BLS’ 2017 Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries noted that 5,147 fatal injuries were reported last year, as compared to 5,190 in 2016. The fatality rate among full-time workers was also down slightly.
Posted: December 19, 2018, 3:00 pm
Changes in technology and infrastructure have opened up new pathways for opportunities. The 2019 World of Concrete Education Program offers 187 sessions providing training and certification, safety, leadership and construction fundamentals and more—all vital to your growth and profitability.
Posted: December 18, 2018, 8:02 pm
World of Concrete will have pavilions at two upcoming shows in Canada. The World of Concrete Toronto Pavilion will be at the Buildings Show, November 28-30, 2018 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre in Toronto, Canada. The Buildings Show provides an unforgettable experience as Canada’s largest event for products, services, educational programming and professional networking for the Design, Architecture, Construction, Renovation and Real Estate sectors.
Posted: December 18, 2018, 5:00 am
Being cited four times in the past five years for fall hazards apparently did not cause a Florida roofing contractor to change its workplace safety practices. In its most recent interaction with OSHA, Turnkey Construction Planners Inc. was cited for failing to provide fall protection to its workers. The Melbourne-based company faces $199,184 in penalties.
Posted: December 17, 2018, 5:00 pm

Cal/OSHA has cited a Riverside, California construction company $66,000 for serious workplace safety violations that resulted in the death of a worker when a 17-foot-deep trench he was in collapsed. Cal/OSHA determined that Empire Equipment Services, Inc. did not properly classify the soil and failed to correctly slope the excavation.

Posted: December 13, 2018, 7:00 pm
OSHA has cited Derek Williams – operating as Elo Restoration Inc. – for exposing employees to fall hazards at two separate worksites in St. Augustine and Daytona Beach, Florida. The roofing contractor faces $116,551 in penalties. OSHA initiated an inspection as part of the Regional Emphasis Program on Falls in Construction.
Posted: December 7, 2018, 3:00 pm
Excuse the length of this depressing exercise, but I’ve been away for a couple of weeks and unlike me, workplace death takes no vacation. The usual falls, machinery deaths, vehicle accidents. Also several sanitation workers lost their lives over the past several week, as well as retail workers shot on the job.
Posted: December 4, 2018, 5:00 pm
A blistering report on small farm safety, Samsung Electronics apologizes for work-related illnesses and a dire warning about the effects of climate change on human health. These were among the top occupational safety and health stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: December 1, 2018, 5:00 am
A California construction company that dismantled a trench box while an employee was still working inside, causing him to be fatally crushed, has been cited by Cal/OSHA for safety violations. The agency determined that general contractor Bay Construction Co. committed willful-serious safety violations by unsafely removing a linear support rail that fell and killed the worker.
Posted: November 28, 2018, 5:00 am
A survey conducted earlier this year by a Canadian bank found that nearly 40 per cent of British Columbia (B.C.) homeowners were planning on renovating their homes. And while that’s great news for the construction industry, it’s important to be aware of the health dangers that asbestos-containing building materials in older homes pose to contractors and their crew.
Posted: November 27, 2018, 5:00 am
A construction worker was killed at a Brooklyn, New York worksite on the day before Thanksgiving by a piece of sheet metal that fell from an unapproved forklift. News sources say 44-year-old Over Paredes of Newark, New Jersey was working on the roof of a six-story condo development when a manual forklift that was hoisting part of a metal-framed wall topped onto its side, releasing the metal.
Posted: November 26, 2018, 5:00 pm
A look back at a mining disaster that led to landmark mining safety regulations; why a group of Philadelphia contractors has “Eggs with OSHA” and the benefits of the Internet of Things to oil and gas industry safety. These were among the occupational safety and health stories featured this week on ISHN.com.
Posted: November 24, 2018, 5:00 am
It’s a pretty big breakfast meeting and it takes place every four months or so. Approximately 200 members of the General Building Contractors Association’s (GBCA) Philadelphia chapter get together with OSHA representatives three times a year to learn more about improving safety in Philadelphia area construction projects.
Posted: November 20, 2018, 7:00 pm
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

Facility Safety

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

Although the fatal and destructive wildfires in California captured headlines last year, there were likely communities throughout the U.S. that remained untouched by wildfires because of the mitigation efforts of individuals and groups. Those efforts – which the public is rarely aware of – were honored recently by a partnership consisting of the National Association of State Foresters (NASF), the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC), the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), and the USDA Forest Service (USFS).
Posted: January 18, 2019, 3:00 pm
OSHA standard 1910.242(b) relating to hand and portable powered tools and other hand-held equipment is clear on using compressed air for cleaning. “Compressed air shall not be used for cleaning purposes except where reduced to less than 30 psi and then only with effective chip guarding and personal protective equipment.”
Posted: January 17, 2019, 5:00 am
A supermarket employee, Duoc Tran, fell to his death at Comumbia Market when the ladder he was climbing to retrieve an object for a customer slipped and he fell and hit his head on the floor. A construction worker was killed Saturday in a fall at the Amazon fulfillment center construction site. The Kern County Fire Department said they received a call around 3:30 p.m. for a person who fell near the 1900 block of Petrol Road.
Posted: January 16, 2019, 5:00 am

Two UPS employees were rescued this morning after being taken hostage by a gunman who was the ex-boyfriend of one of the hostages. The drama unfolded in the loading dock area at a UPS facility in Logan Township, New Jersey.

Posted: January 14, 2019, 9:00 pm
I somehow missed the Pemberton Mill disaster that happened on January 10, 1860 when the large, 5-story factory in Lawrence, Massachusetts, collapsed without warning in what is likely “the worst industrial accident in Massachusetts history” and “one of the worst industrial calamities in American history.”
Posted: January 14, 2019, 7:00 pm
The EM-O Compact mist collector from Camfil APC is an affordable option for smaller machine shops looking to provide a cleaner and safer work environment. This plug-and-play, small-footprint mist collector was designed to separate either oil or synthetic coolant mist from the air before it is inhaled by operators or settles on machines, floors and other surfaces.
Posted: January 14, 2019, 5:00 am
Released in Q3 of 2018, ANSI/ISEA 121-2018, American National Standard for Dropped Object Prevention Solutions, is the first standard of its type for dropped and falling objects prevention equipment – establishing minimum design, performance, and labeling requirements for product solutions and guidelines for testing.
Posted: January 11, 2019, 5:00 am
The FBI reported 30 active shooter incidents in 2017, the highest number ever recorded in a one-year period. With nearly half (42%) of incidents between 2000 and 2017 taking place at businesses or areas of commerce, and the majority of them ending before law enforcement arrived, it’s critical that employers are prepared for the unthinkable.
Posted: January 8, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA's Respiratory Protection Standard applies to general industry, construction, shipyards, marine terminals, and longshoring. The OSHA respirator standard applies to all occupational airborne exposures to contaminated air where the employee is.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
Falls are the leading cause of death among private industry construction workers. This isn’t a surprise considering the duty to provide fall protection is traditionally the most frequently cited OSHA construction violation.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
This occupational safety and health standard is intended to address comprehensively the issue of classifying the potential hazards of chemicals, and communicating information concerning hazards and appropriate protective measures to employees, and to preempt any legislative or regulatory enactments of a state, or political subdivision of a state, pertaining to this subject.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
According to OSHA, an injury or illness is considered work related if an event or exposure in the work environment caused or contributed to the condition or significantly aggravated a preexisting condition. Work-relatedness is presumed for injuries and illnesses resulting from events or exposures occurring in the workplace, unless an exception specifically applies.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
Exits at a Ohio United Parcel Service (UPS) distribution center weren’t just temporarily blocked, according to the OSHA inspectors; some were permanently locked. The company was cited for repeatedly putting workers at risk by obstructing exit routes at its Sharonville, Ohio, distribution center and faces $208,603 in proposed penalties for those violations.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 6:00 pm
We like to keep the air in our homes as clean as possible, and sometimes we use HEPA air filters to keep offending allergens and dust particles at bay. But some hazardous compounds are too small to be trapped in these filters.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 5:00 pm
NFPA 70E® Standard for Electrical Safety in the Workplace® provides requirements for establishing a workplace that is safe from unacceptable risks associated with using electricity while working. Safety processes, policies, procedures and program controls reduce the risks associated with using electricity to an acceptable level.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 5:00 am
Few employees may ever take notice of a freshly cleaned, well-maintained floor. Unfortunately, too few also tend to notice uneven surfaces that cause trips or spilled materials that can make floors slippery. That’s one of the reasons why it’s up to employers to make sure that these types of hazards are eliminated.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA requires that fall protection be provided at elevations of four feet in general industry workplaces, five feet in shipyards, six feet in the construction industry and eight feet in long shoring operations. In addition, OSHA requires that fall protection be provided when working over dangerous equipment and machinery, regardless of the fall distance.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 5:00 am
Experts say 45001 is not easy to apprehend when read as a normal book, especially if you are not familiar with the ISO framework of 9001 and 18001. You have to realize the interconnections between specific clauses. Experts advise finding a good training course to help realize the standard’s full potential. You may also want to consider employing consultancy services to assist.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 5:00 am
The cost of a fire in a warehouse goes far beyond the loss of the building and goods. The consequential loss caused by downtime, operation interruption, business reputation and goodwill can be significant.
Posted: December 20, 2018, 5:00 am
Festive meals, flickering lights and holiday decorations are all hallmarks of the holiday season. However, Christmas trees, candles, electrical decorations, and cooking all contribute to an increased number of home fires during December, making it one of the leading months for U.S. home fires. “Fire can quickly turn this festive time of year into a tragic one,” said Lorraine Carli, vice president of NFPA’s Outreach and Advocacy division.
Posted: December 19, 2018, 8:00 pm
OSHA has cited Thiele Dairy in Clearwater, Nebraska for failing to develop and implement safety and health programs related to grain bin entry after an employee suffered fatal injuries. OSHA inspectors determined that an operating sweep auger lacerated an employee's leg as he attempted to remove corn from inside a grain bin at the dairy.
Posted: December 18, 2018, 5:00 pm
After being trapped inside an abandoned mine in West Virginia for days, three people were found alive and in good condition yesterday. News sources say Kayla Williams, 25, Erica Treadway, 31, and Cody Beverly, 21 – who had entered the Elk Run Coal’s Rock House Powellton mine near Clear Creek illegally – were located on day four of a search coordinated by the West Virginia Office of Miners’ Health, Safety and Training.
Posted: December 13, 2018, 8:00 am
OSHA has cited Parts Authority LLC - a wholesale auto and truck parts distributor based in Norcross, Georgia - for exposing employees to fire, electrical shock, and struck-by hazards. The company faces $133,406 in penalties.
Posted: December 13, 2018, 5:00 am
The Norman County Sheriff’s Office has released more details of a farm accident last month that fatally injured a 28-year-old mother. Katherine Brommenschenkel Vilmo, of Ada, was feeding cattle Friday, Nov. 16, on her family’s farm in Hendrum along Minnesota Highway 200. It was about 9 a.m. when a large hay bale pinned Vilmo against a cattle feeder, according to a sheriff’s office report.
Posted: December 12, 2018, 5:00 pm
New Pig has introduced the PIG® Oily Water Cleanup Towels in Vac-Pack. Different than conventional oil-only spill products, these absorbent towels allow water to pass through during outdoor cleanups and oily tool wipedowns - capturing oils, fuels and hydrocarbons.
Posted: December 12, 2018, 5:00 am

An urgent search and rescue operation going on in an underground West Virginia mine right now is atypical: the Rock House Powellton mine is inactive and the missing people are not mine employees. A West Virginia mine rescue team is attempting to find and rescue three young people who reportedly entered the sealed mine illegally, leaving an all-terrain vehicle near its entrance.

Posted: December 12, 2018, 5:00 am
Along with singing Auld Lang Syne at the start of the New Year, making resolutions is a tradition for millions of Americans. Of the many resolutions that will be made January 1st, pledging to conduct a machine safeguarding assessment may not be as popular as say, losing weight or balancing family finances, but it is certain to change the way your manufacturing plant operates in 2019.
Posted: December 11, 2018, 5:00 am
OSHA and its Alliance partner, the National Grain and Feed Association (NGFA), in cooperation with the Grain Elevator and Processing Society, will hold Stand-Up for Grain Safety Week, March 25-29, 2019. The event will focus on grain bin entry, machine guarding, respiratory protection, falls, heat, lockout/tagout, and other industry issues.
Posted: December 6, 2018, 3:00 pm
Camfil APC introduces the Gold ConeTM X-Flo (GCX) Filter Cartridge for high-efficiency industrial dust collection. Building on the proven performance of HemiPleat® Gold ConeTM technology, GCX filters stay cleaner and last longer than conventional pleated filters.
Posted: December 4, 2018, 5:00 am
The industrial internet of things (IIoT) has significantly impacted safety for workers and entire companies, and many results are undoubtedly positive. However, since IIoT devices connect to the internet, organizations must follow cybersecurity best practices to ensure cybercriminals don't infiltrate systems and cause dangerous malfunctions.
Posted: November 28, 2018, 3:00 pm

Environmental Health and Safety

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

An environmentally friendly diet proposed by scientists that would radically transform food production and the types of food we eat; how the shutdown is affecting federal workers’ mental health and a look back at one of the strangest and deadliest industrial disasters in U.S. history. These were among the top stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: January 19, 2019, 5:00 am
Cleaning and disinfecting products are complex mixtures of chemicals that can irritate the skin. Evidence also shows that exposure to these products may increase the risk of work-related asthma among healthcare workers. But the effects of specific chemicals remain unclear. Now, a NIOSH study published in the journal Annals of Work Exposures and Health has added to our understanding by linking products and tasks to specific exposures.
Posted: January 18, 2019, 7:00 pm
OSHA has cited RKM Utility Services Inc. for failing to protect workers from hydrogen sulfide after an employee died after exposure to dangerous levels of the gas while working in a trench in Dallas, Texas.
Posted: January 18, 2019, 5:00 am
Most of the emergency responders dispatched to a serious incident involving a toxic gas exposure did not use required respirators for breathing protection, according to a NIOSH-funded investigation published in the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR). The gas, phosphine, forms when pesticides containing aluminum phosphide mix with water.
Posted: January 17, 2019, 5:00 pm
Want to be healthier and help save the planet at the same time? A “planetary health diet” unveiled yesterday in the medical journal Lancet will do both, according to the international team of scientists who developed it. The authors of the report say changes to the way we eat - across the globe - are urgently needed amid increasing obesity and climate change made worse by population growth, which is expected to reach 10 billion people by 2050.
Posted: January 17, 2019, 3:00 pm
With the recent resurgence of the most severe form of black lung disease among coal miners, especially in central Appalachia, understanding and preventing exposure to the respirable, or inhalable, dust generated during the extraction of coal is paramount. Black lung is a form of pneumoconiosis, or scarring lung disease, caused by breathing in dust that can occur with exposure to respirable coal mine dust.
Posted: January 17, 2019, 3:00 pm
OSHA standard 1910.242(b) relating to hand and portable powered tools and other hand-held equipment is clear on using compressed air for cleaning. “Compressed air shall not be used for cleaning purposes except where reduced to less than 30 psi and then only with effective chip guarding and personal protective equipment.”
Posted: January 17, 2019, 5:00 am
A foodborne illness outbreak, a worker fatality at a car dealership and the first-ever public agenda issued by AIHA were among the top occupational safety and health stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: January 12, 2019, 5:00 am
Released in Q3 of 2018, ANSI/ISEA 121-2018, American National Standard for Dropped Object Prevention Solutions, is the first standard of its type for dropped and falling objects prevention equipment – establishing minimum design, performance, and labeling requirements for product solutions and guidelines for testing.
Posted: January 11, 2019, 5:00 am
Outfitting employees with appropriate footwear reduces injuries. Making sure workers have the right footwear for the job is a real, ongoing challenge for safety managers. Here are five ways you can overcome it and take advantage of all the benefits of high-quality safety footwear.
Posted: January 9, 2019, 5:00 am
Occupational exposures to pesticides and metals are associated with an increased prevalence of cardiovascular disease (CVD) among Hispanics/Latinos, according to a study published online Dec. 11 in Heart. Catherine M. Bulka, Ph.D., from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and colleagues analyzed cross-sectional data from 7,404 employed Hispanic/Latino individuals aged 18 to 74 years.
Posted: January 8, 2019, 5:00 am
Falls are the leading cause of death among private industry construction workers. This isn’t a surprise considering the duty to provide fall protection is traditionally the most frequently cited OSHA construction violation.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA's Respiratory Protection Standard applies to general industry, construction, shipyards, marine terminals, and longshoring. The OSHA respirator standard applies to all occupational airborne exposures to contaminated air where the employee is.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
This occupational safety and health standard is intended to address comprehensively the issue of classifying the potential hazards of chemicals, and communicating information concerning hazards and appropriate protective measures to employees, and to preempt any legislative or regulatory enactments of a state, or political subdivision of a state, pertaining to this subject.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
According to OSHA, an injury or illness is considered work related if an event or exposure in the work environment caused or contributed to the condition or significantly aggravated a preexisting condition. Work-relatedness is presumed for injuries and illnesses resulting from events or exposures occurring in the workplace, unless an exception specifically applies.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
The health care industry has a new resource to turn to for information about respiratory protection options for employees, one which crunches the numbers and identifies two types of usage. A recently released report from the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine explores the potential for use of half-facepiece elastomeric respirators in the U.S. health care system with a focus on the economic, policy, and implementation challenges and opportunities.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries reported 54 fatalities in 2009 from scaffold staging. In a BLS study, 72 percent of workers injured in scaffold accidents said either the planking or support gave way, slipping, or being struck by a falling object. All can be controlled by compliance with OSHA standards.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
Falls are the leading cause of death in construction. In 2016, there were 370 fatal falls to a lower level out of 991 construction fatalities (BLS data). These deaths are preventable.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA statistics indicate that there are roughly 85 forklift fatalities and 34,900 serious injuries each year, with 42 percent of the forklift fatalities from the operators being crushed by a tipping vehicle.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
Workers servicing or maintaining machines or equipment may be seriously injured or killed if hazardous energy is not properly controlled. Injuries resulting from the failure to control hazardous energy during maintenance activities can be serious or fatal. Injuries may include electrocution, burns, crushing, cutting, lacerating, amputating, or fracturing body parts.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
Factors contributing to falls from ladders include haste, sudden movement, lack of attention, the condition of the ladder (worn or damaged), the user's age or physical condition, or both, and the user's footwear.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA requires employers to ensure the safety of all employees in the work environment. Eye and face protection must be provided whenever necessary to protect against chemical, environmental, radiological or mechanical irritants and hazards.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
In the United States, workers required to wear respiratory protection must pass an annual respirator fit test. Fit tests help companies ensure worker safety by verifying a respirator can provide an OSHA-mandated and standardized level of protection.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 4:28 pm
Experts say 45001 is not easy to apprehend when read as a normal book, especially if you are not familiar with the ISO framework of 9001 and 18001. You have to realize the interconnections between specific clauses. Experts advise finding a good training course to help realize the standard’s full potential. You may also want to consider employing consultancy services to assist.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 5:00 am
The standard applies to all occupational exposures to respirable crystalline silica, except where employee exposure will remain below 25 μg/m3 as an 8-hour TWA under any foreseeable conditions and those occurring during agricultural operations covered under 29 CFR part 1928 and and exposures that result from the processing of sorptive clays.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA requires that fall protection be provided at elevations of four feet in general industry workplaces, five feet in shipyards, six feet in the construction industry and eight feet in long shoring operations. In addition, OSHA requires that fall protection be provided when working over dangerous equipment and machinery, regardless of the fall distance.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 5:00 am
Any entity doing construction work, such as building a new structure or upgrading an old one, must follow the construction confined space rule. Because the new rule applies to all employers who perform construction activities in a confined space, safety managers in all industries should become familiar with the standard.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 5:00 am
NFPA 70E® Standard for Electrical Safety in the Workplace® provides requirements for establishing a workplace that is safe from unacceptable risks associated with using electricity while working. Safety processes, policies, procedures and program controls reduce the risks associated with using electricity to an acceptable level.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 5:00 am
The standard applies to all general industry places of employment, including agricultural services, manufacturing, transportation and utilities, wholesale trade, food stores, hotels and other lodging, health services, museums, botanical gardens and zoos.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 5:00 am
This article aims to recap basic information about hearing protection and how to help prevent long-term hearing loss. This is an important topic that should be reinforced in order to ensure workers are provided a comprehensive and efficient hearing protection products and programs.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 5:00 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.

An environmentally friendly diet proposed by scientists that would radically transform food production and the types of food we eat; how the shutdown is affecting federal workers’ mental health and a look back at one of the strangest and deadliest industrial disasters in U.S. history. These were among the top stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: January 19, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA's civil penalties amounts for violations of workplace safety and health standards will increase in 2019 to adjust for inflation. The adjusted maximum penalty amounts will take effect upon publication in the Federal Register. New penalties for willful and repeat violations will be $132,598 per violation; serious, other-than-serious, and posting requirements are $13,260 per violation.
Posted: January 18, 2019, 7:00 pm
NFPA 2113: Standard on Flame-Resistant Garments for Protection of Industrial Personnel Against Flash Fire (latest edition 2015, next revision 2020) guides you to avoid risks associated with incorrect selection, use, and maintenance, as well as contamination and damage of flame-resistant (FR) garments.
Posted: January 18, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA has cited RKM Utility Services Inc. for failing to protect workers from hydrogen sulfide after an employee died after exposure to dangerous levels of the gas while working in a trench in Dallas, Texas.
Posted: January 18, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA standard 1910.242(b) relating to hand and portable powered tools and other hand-held equipment is clear on using compressed air for cleaning. “Compressed air shall not be used for cleaning purposes except where reduced to less than 30 psi and then only with effective chip guarding and personal protective equipment.”
Posted: January 17, 2019, 5:00 am
A volunteer firefighter in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, lost his life last July responding to an explosion and fire that resulted from two utility contractors failing to establish the location of underground utilities prior to beginning excavation work.
Posted: January 16, 2019, 7:00 pm
Most all of us have been around a boss or supervisor who isn’t very likeable or open to feedback. He or she is often avoided, and people may even fear approaching that boss with a safety-related concern or idea for improvement. Workers who perceive their bosses as open believe their leader really listens to their ideas and acts upon them when appropriate — or at the very least, gives their ideas a fair shake.
Posted: January 16, 2019, 5:00 am
One of the strangest – and deadliest – incidents in U.S. history occurred on this day in 1919, when millions of gallons of molasses poured into Boston’s North End, killing 21 people, injuring 150 more and laying waste to two city blocks.
Posted: January 15, 2019, 7:00 pm
OSHA has cited Spear Excavating LLC – based in Pennsburg, Pennsylvania – for exposing employees to trenching hazards at a worksite in Malvern, Pennsylvania. The company faces $106,057 in proposed penalties. OSHA initiated an inspection on August 2, 2018, after receiving a complaint alleging the hazards.
Posted: January 15, 2019, 5:00 am
A crane collapse that caused injuries in New York City last summer has resulted in citations against a Missouri-based contractor. Three construction workers were injured – one critically - when an unsecured mini-crane overturned and fell four stories from an East Harlem worksite on June 25, 2018. The injured included the worker who fell with the crane.
Posted: January 14, 2019, 5:00 pm
A worker’s heat-related fatality last summer in Southern California has resulted in citations against the U.S. Postal Service for a repeated violation of OSHA’s General Duty Clause. The employee suffered hyperthermia while delivering mail in July 2018 when the outdoor temperature reached 117 degrees.
Posted: January 11, 2019, 3:00 pm
Released in Q3 of 2018, ANSI/ISEA 121-2018, American National Standard for Dropped Object Prevention Solutions, is the first standard of its type for dropped and falling objects prevention equipment – establishing minimum design, performance, and labeling requirements for product solutions and guidelines for testing.
Posted: January 11, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA has cited Maryland-based contractor Power Factor LLC for exposing workers to electrical hazards after an employee was fatally electrocuted while installing solar panels on a building in Fort Riley, Kansas. Inspectors determined that the employee was hoisting a metal rail that came into contact with energized overhead power lines.
Posted: January 10, 2019, 3:00 pm
Outfitting employees with appropriate footwear reduces injuries. Making sure workers have the right footwear for the job is a real, ongoing challenge for safety managers. Here are five ways you can overcome it and take advantage of all the benefits of high-quality safety footwear.
Posted: January 9, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA has cited Franklin County Construction LLC – based in New Haven, Missouri – after an employee suffered fatal fall injuries when a roof truss collapsed. The employee was part of a crew installing prefabricated roof trusses onto a commercial building under construction in Bowling Green, Missouri.
Posted: January 8, 2019, 7:00 pm
Although the partial shutdown of the federal government continues to affect many agencies, the U.S. Department of Labor – of which OSHA is a part – is open and funded as a result of spending bills that were previously passed by Congress and signed into law by President Trump.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 7:00 pm
This occupational safety and health standard is intended to address comprehensively the issue of classifying the potential hazards of chemicals, and communicating information concerning hazards and appropriate protective measures to employees, and to preempt any legislative or regulatory enactments of a state, or political subdivision of a state, pertaining to this subject.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
According to OSHA, an injury or illness is considered work related if an event or exposure in the work environment caused or contributed to the condition or significantly aggravated a preexisting condition. Work-relatedness is presumed for injuries and illnesses resulting from events or exposures occurring in the workplace, unless an exception specifically applies.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA's Respiratory Protection Standard applies to general industry, construction, shipyards, marine terminals, and longshoring. The OSHA respirator standard applies to all occupational airborne exposures to contaminated air where the employee is.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries reported 54 fatalities in 2009 from scaffold staging. In a BLS study, 72 percent of workers injured in scaffold accidents said either the planking or support gave way, slipping, or being struck by a falling object. All can be controlled by compliance with OSHA standards.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
Foodborne illness prevention, what’s ahead for NORA and the value of wearable technology in preventing workplace injuries were among the top health and safety stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: January 5, 2019, 5:00 am
Exits at a Ohio United Parcel Service (UPS) distribution center weren’t just temporarily blocked, according to the OSHA inspectors; some were permanently locked. The company was cited for repeatedly putting workers at risk by obstructing exit routes at its Sharonville, Ohio, distribution center and faces $208,603 in proposed penalties for those violations.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 6:00 pm
Factors contributing to falls from ladders include haste, sudden movement, lack of attention, the condition of the ladder (worn or damaged), the user's age or physical condition, or both, and the user's footwear.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA requires employers to ensure the safety of all employees in the work environment. Eye and face protection must be provided whenever necessary to protect against chemical, environmental, radiological or mechanical irritants and hazards.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA statistics indicate that there are roughly 85 forklift fatalities and 34,900 serious injuries each year, with 42 percent of the forklift fatalities from the operators being crushed by a tipping vehicle.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
Falls are the leading cause of death in construction. In 2016, there were 370 fatal falls to a lower level out of 991 construction fatalities (BLS data). These deaths are preventable.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
Workers servicing or maintaining machines or equipment may be seriously injured or killed if hazardous energy is not properly controlled. Injuries resulting from the failure to control hazardous energy during maintenance activities can be serious or fatal. Injuries may include electrocution, burns, crushing, cutting, lacerating, amputating, or fracturing body parts.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA has cited roofing company Aspen Contracting Inc. – based in Lee’s Summit, Missouri – and subcontractor J Cuellar LLC – based in West Bend, Wisconsin – for exposing employees to dangerous fall hazards at a Fountain, Colorado construction site. The companies face proposed penalties totaling $147, 998.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 5:00 pm
In the United States, workers required to wear respiratory protection must pass an annual respirator fit test. Fit tests help companies ensure worker safety by verifying a respirator can provide an OSHA-mandated and standardized level of protection.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 4:28 pm
The standard applies to all general industry places of employment, including agricultural services, manufacturing, transportation and utilities, wholesale trade, food stores, hotels and other lodging, health services, museums, botanical gardens and zoos.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 5:00 am

Occupational Safety

Learn about the latest safety issues affecting various industries.

OSHA's civil penalties amounts for violations of workplace safety and health standards will increase in 2019 to adjust for inflation. The adjusted maximum penalty amounts will take effect upon publication in the Federal Register. New penalties for willful and repeat violations will be $132,598 per violation; serious, other-than-serious, and posting requirements are $13,260 per violation.
Posted: January 18, 2019, 7:00 pm
Cleaning and disinfecting products are complex mixtures of chemicals that can irritate the skin. Evidence also shows that exposure to these products may increase the risk of work-related asthma among healthcare workers. But the effects of specific chemicals remain unclear. Now, a NIOSH study published in the journal Annals of Work Exposures and Health has added to our understanding by linking products and tasks to specific exposures.
Posted: January 18, 2019, 7:00 pm
OSHA is investigating a construction accident Wednesday evening in Cleveland, Ohio that claimed the life of a 65-year-old worker. News sources said crews were demolishing a three-story building when the accident occurred. The victim was operating an excavating and other workers were dismantling an elevator shaft when parts of the building fell on the excavator, crushing the man.
Posted: January 18, 2019, 5:00 pm
OSHA has cited RKM Utility Services Inc. for failing to protect workers from hydrogen sulfide after an employee died after exposure to dangerous levels of the gas while working in a trench in Dallas, Texas.
Posted: January 18, 2019, 5:00 am
NFPA 2113: Standard on Flame-Resistant Garments for Protection of Industrial Personnel Against Flash Fire (latest edition 2015, next revision 2020) guides you to avoid risks associated with incorrect selection, use, and maintenance, as well as contamination and damage of flame-resistant (FR) garments.
Posted: January 18, 2019, 5:00 am
With the recent resurgence of the most severe form of black lung disease among coal miners, especially in central Appalachia, understanding and preventing exposure to the respirable, or inhalable, dust generated during the extraction of coal is paramount. Black lung is a form of pneumoconiosis, or scarring lung disease, caused by breathing in dust that can occur with exposure to respirable coal mine dust.
Posted: January 17, 2019, 3:00 pm
OSHA standard 1910.242(b) relating to hand and portable powered tools and other hand-held equipment is clear on using compressed air for cleaning. “Compressed air shall not be used for cleaning purposes except where reduced to less than 30 psi and then only with effective chip guarding and personal protective equipment.”
Posted: January 17, 2019, 5:00 am
A volunteer firefighter in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, lost his life last July responding to an explosion and fire that resulted from two utility contractors failing to establish the location of underground utilities prior to beginning excavation work.
Posted: January 16, 2019, 7:00 pm
The Targo FR Foul Weather Bomber and Bib features breathable, waterproof and windproof 7 oz. 2-layer GORE-TEX PYRAD®. Lightweight and fast drying, Targo keeps you comfortable even in the toughest conditions.
Posted: January 16, 2019, 5:00 am
A supermarket employee, Duoc Tran, fell to his death at Comumbia Market when the ladder he was climbing to retrieve an object for a customer slipped and he fell and hit his head on the floor. A construction worker was killed Saturday in a fall at the Amazon fulfillment center construction site. The Kern County Fire Department said they received a call around 3:30 p.m. for a person who fell near the 1900 block of Petrol Road.
Posted: January 16, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA has cited Spear Excavating LLC – based in Pennsburg, Pennsylvania – for exposing employees to trenching hazards at a worksite in Malvern, Pennsylvania. The company faces $106,057 in proposed penalties. OSHA initiated an inspection on August 2, 2018, after receiving a complaint alleging the hazards.
Posted: January 15, 2019, 5:00 am
Kee Safety, Inc., Buffalo, New York, announces the introduction of Kee Walk® with Guardrail, an OSHA-compliant rooftop walkway system with integrated safety railing. Designed to provide a secure, anti-slip walking surface on all roof types including metal profile and standing seam roofs, Kee Walk with Guardrail accommodates steps, traverses, and sloped roofs with pitches up to 35 degrees, Kee Safety® states.
Posted: January 15, 2019, 5:00 am

Two UPS employees were rescued this morning after being taken hostage by a gunman who was the ex-boyfriend of one of the hostages. The drama unfolded in the loading dock area at a UPS facility in Logan Township, New Jersey.

Posted: January 14, 2019, 9:00 pm
I somehow missed the Pemberton Mill disaster that happened on January 10, 1860 when the large, 5-story factory in Lawrence, Massachusetts, collapsed without warning in what is likely “the worst industrial accident in Massachusetts history” and “one of the worst industrial calamities in American history.”
Posted: January 14, 2019, 7:00 pm
A crane collapse that caused injuries in New York City last summer has resulted in citations against a Missouri-based contractor. Three construction workers were injured – one critically - when an unsecured mini-crane overturned and fell four stories from an East Harlem worksite on June 25, 2018. The injured included the worker who fell with the crane.
Posted: January 14, 2019, 5:00 pm
The U.S. Department of Labor's Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) reports that 27 mining fatalities occurred in 2018 - the second lowest number ever recorded. Eighteen fatalities occurred at surface operations; nine occurred in underground mines.
Posted: January 14, 2019, 3:00 pm
A New York City firefighter was killed in the line of duty last week when he fell more than 50 feet to his death while responding to a traffic accident in Brooklyn.
Posted: January 14, 2019, 5:00 am
Fall protection, skid-resistant boots and an air respirator for welding helmets were among the top occupational safety and health products featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: January 13, 2019, 5:00 am
A foodborne illness outbreak, a worker fatality at a car dealership and the first-ever public agenda issued by AIHA were among the top occupational safety and health stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
Posted: January 12, 2019, 5:00 am
A worker’s heat-related fatality last summer in Southern California has resulted in citations against the U.S. Postal Service for a repeated violation of OSHA’s General Duty Clause. The employee suffered hyperthermia while delivering mail in July 2018 when the outdoor temperature reached 117 degrees.
Posted: January 11, 2019, 3:00 pm
A rookie police officer – on the job for only a few weeks – was shot and killed Thursday night in Davis, California after responding to what appeared to be a routine call. News sources say 22-year-old Natalie Corona answered the call about an automobile accident and was gunned down by a man who opened fire at the scene.
Posted: January 11, 2019, 5:00 am
A fall, a vehicle accident and a drowning during the second week of the new year claimed the lives of two construction workers and left a third hospitalized with critical injuries. In Orlando, Florida news sources say a worker employed by I-4 Ultimate fell 50 feet at a jobsite Monday afternoon.
Posted: January 10, 2019, 5:00 pm
OSHA has cited Maryland-based contractor Power Factor LLC for exposing workers to electrical hazards after an employee was fatally electrocuted while installing solar panels on a building in Fort Riley, Kansas. Inspectors determined that the employee was hoisting a metal rail that came into contact with energized overhead power lines.
Posted: January 10, 2019, 3:00 pm
The condition of the equipment that employees use or operate in an industrial setting can directly affect a company's productivity. It can also put workers' safety at risk. Here are six things that should factor into any decision about equipment replacement timelines.
Posted: January 10, 2019, 5:00 am
Standard 1910.1020 “Access to employee exposure and medical records” is the most important and far-reaching of OSHA’s regulations. When the standard became effective more than two decades ago, it could not have envisioned the explosive growth of global chemical exposure information.
Posted: January 10, 2019, 5:00 am
The circumstances surrounding an accident Monday that claimed the life of a young auto dealership employee have not yet been disclosed by official sources, although a local television station reported seeing a badly damaged bay door at the facility following the fatality.
Posted: January 9, 2019, 7:00 pm
Despite fluctuations from year to year, the number of fatal electrical injuries experienced by contract workers has followed an upward direction, according to a report by released by the National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA) and written by Richard Campbell using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries.
Posted: January 9, 2019, 5:00 pm
OSHA has cited Franklin County Construction LLC – based in New Haven, Missouri – after an employee suffered fatal fall injuries when a roof truss collapsed. The employee was part of a crew installing prefabricated roof trusses onto a commercial building under construction in Bowling Green, Missouri.
Posted: January 8, 2019, 7:00 pm
Each day approximately 150 people — more than 54,000 a year — die unnecessarily from work-related injuries and illnesses. Many more suffer nonfatal injuries and illnesses. As part of the American Industrial Hygiene Association's continuing efforts to address these problems, today it has released its first-ever Public Policy Agenda.
Posted: January 8, 2019, 3:00 pm
Although the partial shutdown of the federal government continues to affect many agencies, the U.S. Department of Labor – of which OSHA is a part – is open and funded as a result of spending bills that were previously passed by Congress and signed into law by President Trump.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 7:00 pm

Transportation Safety

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

While unions representing air traffic controllers and aviation safety inspectors are warning that the partial government shutdown is endangering the flying public, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) – which is in partial function mode – is assuring the public that safety “is the top priority.”
Posted: January 15, 2019, 5:00 pm
A fall, a vehicle accident and a drowning during the second week of the new year claimed the lives of two construction workers and left a third hospitalized with critical injuries. In Orlando, Florida news sources say a worker employed by I-4 Ultimate fell 50 feet at a jobsite Monday afternoon.
Posted: January 10, 2019, 5:00 pm
A drinking fountain in Cleveland Hopkins International Airport may be the culprit behind a half dozen passengers falling ill on a Cleveland-to-Tampa flight yesterday. News sources say six people on a Frontier Airlines flight became sick en route to their destination. Health officials boarded the plane when it landed at Tampa International Airport.
Posted: January 2, 2019, 3:00 pm
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has awarded more than $100,000 in grant funding to states through the Governors Highway Safety Association to help combat drug-impaired driving on America’s roads. The funding will support Drug Recognition Expert and Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement training in Delaware, Guam, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Oklahoma, and West Virginia.
Posted: December 21, 2018, 3:00 pm
A film crew employee who was placing traffic cones last week at a Brooklyn location where a TV show was set to film was struck and killed by a co-worker, according to news sources. The early morning incident took the life of Pedro Jimenez, 63.
Posted: December 17, 2018, 3:00 pm
With the holiday season upon us, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is reminding homeowners to aim their laser-light displays at their homes, and not into the sky. The FAA says that every year, it receives reports from pilots who are distracted or temporarily blinded by residential laser-light displays.
Posted: December 14, 2018, 7:00 pm
The National Transportation Safety Board (the NTSB) has determined that an insufficient preventative maintenance program and lack of guidance for responding to engine high-temperature conditions, led to a fire earlier this year that resulted in the death of a passenger.
Posted: December 11, 2018, 8:00 pm
Driving large trucks for a living can be a daunting and dangerous task, particularly on the highway. Not only do semi-trucks weigh tons, but their drivers also have to be completely cognizant of smaller vehicles on the road. It can be difficult to remain alert and fully aware of your surroundings while driving long distances through the night.
Posted: December 11, 2018, 5:00 pm
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has released its first unmanned robotics guidance for first responders and others. NFPA 2400®, Standard for Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (sUAS) Used for Public Safety Operations was developed by representatives from public safety departments with unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), including the fire service, law enforcement, and emergency medical services.
Posted: December 7, 2018, 5:00 pm
With drones continuing to soar in popularity, it’s likely that there will be plenty of them under Christmas trees this year, ready to be unwrapped, taken outside and flown. The Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) has created a “Buzzy the Drone” character to teach newbies the do’s and don'ts of being a responsible drone operator and flying their new drone safely.
Posted: December 6, 2018, 7:00 pm
A 2016 bus crash near Laredo, Texas that killed nine people was caused by the driver’s fatigue and diabetes complications, according to an investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). The May 14 incident occurred at approximately 11:24 a.m., central daylight time, when a 49-passenger motorcoach, operated by OGA Charters LLC of San Juan, Texas, entered a horizontal curve to the right, but drifted from its lane to the left.
Posted: December 6, 2018, 5:00 pm
Excuse the length of this depressing exercise, but I’ve been away for a couple of weeks and unlike me, workplace death takes no vacation. The usual falls, machinery deaths, vehicle accidents. Also several sanitation workers lost their lives over the past several week, as well as retail workers shot on the job.
Posted: December 4, 2018, 5:00 pm
A bus crash early this morning in Arkansas claimed the life of one child and left dozens of other people – mostly children – injured, according to news sources.
Posted: December 3, 2018, 5:00 am
Workplace safety can be especially challenging when the workplace is…space. NASA astronaut Anne McClain, Canadian astronaut David Saint-Jacques and Russian cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko are set to launch to the International Space Station on Monday, despite a rocket malfunction less than two months ago than forced them to abort a mission.
Posted: November 30, 2018, 9:00 pm
An Indiana legislator is developing a measure intended to make highway construction zones safer for workers. News sources say State Rep. Jim Pressel (R-District 20) has announced plans to introduce a bill to ban cell phone use while driving unless the driver is using a hands-free device. The measure would also include automated enforcement – possibly in the form of cameras at work zones.
Posted: November 28, 2018, 7:00 pm
A towing vessel crew’s inability to close windows and doors when a fire began in the engine room nearly cost them their lives, according to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), which investigated the incident.
Posted: November 27, 2018, 5:00 pm
Planning on traveling by air for the Christmas holiday? The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) wants to help you make it to your destination safely. You can help with that by paying close attention to what’s in your bag.
Posted: November 25, 2018, 5:00 am
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
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
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
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

Oil and Gas Industry Safety & health

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

A truck carrying oil overturned and exploded in Nigeria on Friday, killing at least a dozen people, and as many as 60, according to news reports. Another 22 people reportedly suffered burn injuries and were taken to local hospitals.
Posted: January 17, 2019, 5:00 am
It’s a new year, and in many ways a fresh start; but not for the NORA (National Occupational Research Agenda) councils that continue to build on the efforts of the past two years. The ten sector councils from the second decade of NORA carried forward their work to improve occupational safety and health in industry sectors.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
Statistics released yesterday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) showed that workplace fatalities declined by less than one percent in 2017. The BLS’ 2017 Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries noted that 5,147 fatal injuries were reported last year, as compared to 5,190 in 2016. The fatality rate among full-time workers was also down slightly.
Posted: December 19, 2018, 3:00 pm
Two workers were injured Sunday in Pennsylvania when they were struck by equipment they were using to clean the interior of a 20” underground pipeline. One worker was treated at a local hospital and released. The other was hospitalized with a broken arm.
Posted: December 13, 2018, 5:00 pm
Two years after a natural gas-fueled explosion rocked downtown Canton, Illinois, killing one person and injuring 11 others, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has concluded its investigation into the incident.
Posted: December 4, 2018, 3:00 pm
The oil and gas extraction industry continues to expand in the United States, but this growth comes with increased risks for workers in the industry. During 2003–2016, 1,485 oil and gas extraction workers were killed on the job, resulting in an annual fatality rate more than six times higher than the rate among all U.S. workers.
Posted: December 4, 2018, 5:00 am
The owner of a property maintenance company in McDavid, Florida instructed an employee to ignite wood and debris inside an air burn box using a torch and gasoline. Those directions from to the proprietor of L.A. Disaster Relief and Property Maintenance LLC caused an explosion and left the worker with serious burn injuries. They also resulted in OSHA issuing citations and penalties to the company.
Posted: November 30, 2018, 5:00 pm
On oil and gas worksites, diesel engines power machines ranging from drilling rigs to high-powered hydraulic fracturing pumps, to generators and lighting equipment. The diesel exhaust from these engines, however, is a toxic mix of chemicals that includes small particles of carbon, or soot, which can be accidentally inhaled.
Posted: November 28, 2018, 5:00 am
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

Top OSHA Violations

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

A New York City firefighter was killed in the line of duty last week when he fell more than 50 feet to his death while responding to a traffic accident in Brooklyn.
Posted: January 14, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA's Respiratory Protection Standard applies to general industry, construction, shipyards, marine terminals, and longshoring. The OSHA respirator standard applies to all occupational airborne exposures to contaminated air where the employee is.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
This occupational safety and health standard is intended to address comprehensively the issue of classifying the potential hazards of chemicals, and communicating information concerning hazards and appropriate protective measures to employees, and to preempt any legislative or regulatory enactments of a state, or political subdivision of a state, pertaining to this subject.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries reported 54 fatalities in 2009 from scaffold staging. In a BLS study, 72 percent of workers injured in scaffold accidents said either the planking or support gave way, slipping, or being struck by a falling object. All can be controlled by compliance with OSHA standards.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA requires employers to ensure the safety of all employees in the work environment. Eye and face protection must be provided whenever necessary to protect against chemical, environmental, radiological or mechanical irritants and hazards.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
Workers servicing or maintaining machines or equipment may be seriously injured or killed if hazardous energy is not properly controlled. Injuries resulting from the failure to control hazardous energy during maintenance activities can be serious or fatal. Injuries may include electrocution, burns, crushing, cutting, lacerating, amputating, or fracturing body parts.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA statistics indicate that there are roughly 85 forklift fatalities and 34,900 serious injuries each year, with 42 percent of the forklift fatalities from the operators being crushed by a tipping vehicle.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
Falls are the leading cause of death in construction. In 2016, there were 370 fatal falls to a lower level out of 991 construction fatalities (BLS data). These deaths are preventable.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
Factors contributing to falls from ladders include haste, sudden movement, lack of attention, the condition of the ladder (worn or damaged), the user's age or physical condition, or both, and the user's footwear.
Posted: January 4, 2019, 5:00 am
OSHA requires that fall protection be provided at elevations of four feet in general industry workplaces, five feet in shipyards, six feet in the construction industry and eight feet in long shoring operations. In addition, OSHA requires that fall protection be provided when working over dangerous equipment and machinery, regardless of the fall distance.
Posted: January 3, 2019, 5:00 am
Machine safeguarding is the best way to prevent amputations. Guards provide physical barriers to hazardous areas. They should be secure and strong, and workers should not be able to by-pass, remove or tamper. Guards should not obstruct the operator’s view or prevent others from working.
Posted: January 1, 2019, 5:00 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
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

Industrial Hygiene

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

ACGIH® and its renowned Industrial Ventilation Committee present a popular continuing education course this spring. Fundamentals in Industrial Ventilation & Practical Applications of Useful Equations will be held April 15, 2019 at the DoubleTree Suites by Hilton Cincinnati-Blue Ash in Cincinnati, Ohio. Register early and save!
Posted: January 10, 2019, 5:00 am
Standard 1910.1020 “Access to employee exposure and medical records” is the most important and far-reaching of OSHA’s regulations. When the standard became effective more than two decades ago, it could not have envisioned the explosive growth of global chemical exposure information.
Posted: January 10, 2019, 5:00 am
Each day approximately 150 people — more than 54,000 a year — die unnecessarily from work-related injuries and illnesses. Many more suffer nonfatal injuries and illnesses. As part of the American Industrial Hygiene Association's continuing efforts to address these problems, today it has released its first-ever Public Policy Agenda.
Posted: January 8, 2019, 3:00 pm
Confined space safety, hazards in the oil and gas industry and how workers compensation exposure data can be useful to the safety profession were among the top industrial hygiene stories of 2018.
Posted: December 29, 2018, 5:00 am
Now is the time for occupational safety professionals to check that the safety and hygiene practices in place at their workplaces are compliant with regulatory bodies — like OSHA — and will safeguard workers' wellbeing. Data collected by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) indicates that workplace accidents show a prolonged downward trend, but that's no reason to get complacent.
Posted: December 24, 2018, 5:00 am
The comment period is now open for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) proposed objectives for Healthy People (HP) 2030. This includes proposed core objectives for Occupational Safety and Health (OSH).
Posted: December 12, 2018, 3:00 pm
Worksafe in Oakland, California has an opening for an Occupational & Environmental Health Specialist who will contribute scientific and technical expertise to Worksafe’s policy advocacy and trainings, and spearhead their efforts to protect workers from chemical hazards and toxic substances. The deadline for priority consideration is 12/12.
Posted: December 10, 2018, 3:00 pm
On oil and gas worksites, diesel engines power machines ranging from drilling rigs to high-powered hydraulic fracturing pumps, to generators and lighting equipment. The diesel exhaust from these engines, however, is a toxic mix of chemicals that includes small particles of carbon, or soot, which can be accidentally inhaled.
Posted: November 28, 2018, 5:00 am

ACGIH® is pleased to announce new members for its 2019 Board of Directors and its 2019 Nominating Committee. ACGIH®’s membership elected three (3) members to serve as Directors on the Board of Directors.

Posted: November 27, 2018, 5:00 am
ACGIH® announced today that its Members approved an amendment to the organization’s Bylaws. An overwhelming 95% of eligible voting members voted to approve the amendment. The amended Bylaws will take effect January 1, 2019.
Posted: November 27, 2018, 5:00 am
When thinking of workers’ compensation insurance, we typically think of the money and other benefits provided to workers injured on the job. When public health researchers think of this same insurance, they may also see a potential opportunity to learn more information about work-related health and safety hazards.
Posted: November 26, 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
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
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
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
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
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

Best Practices

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

The condition of the equipment that employees use or operate in an industrial setting can directly affect a company's productivity. It can also put workers' safety at risk. Here are six things that should factor into any decision about equipment replacement timelines.
Posted: January 10, 2019, 5:00 am
According to OSHA, an injury or illness is considered work related if an event or exposure in the work environment caused or contributed to the condition or significantly aggravated a preexisting condition. Work-relatedness is presumed for injuries and illnesses resulting from events or exposures occurring in the workplace, unless an exception specifically applies.
Posted: January 7, 2019, 5:00 am
Sexual harassment, employee engagement and the evolution of discipline were all explored in 2018 articles focusing on how to improve your company’s safety culture written by the top thought leaders in the occupational safety and health profession.
Posted: December 27, 2018, 5:00 am
Now is the time for occupational safety professionals to check that the safety and hygiene practices in place at their workplaces are compliant with regulatory bodies — like OSHA — and will safeguard workers' wellbeing. Data collected by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) indicates that workplace accidents show a prolonged downward trend, but that's no reason to get complacent.
Posted: December 24, 2018, 5:00 am
With a growing number of states legalizing marijuana, causing a rapid increase in the cannabis industry workforce, increasing attention is being given to the health and safety of those involved in the cultivation and distribution of the substance in its various forms. One potentially serious health risk is from occupational exposure to mold.
Posted: December 20, 2018, 5:00 pm
The World Economic Forum “Global Competitiveness Report 2018” ranked the U.S. as the most competitive country in the world with an overall score of 86. The U.S. ranked 1st in labor market, financial systems and business dynamism categories.
Posted: December 11, 2018, 5:00 am
Sometimes, things just don’t work out. It might not be anyone’s fault — or perhaps you feel strongly that it is entirely someone’s fault — but regardless, regularly working with outside contractors brings about the occasional conflict. But should a conflict arise, it doesn’t necessarily mean that a situation is beyond all repair.
Posted: December 7, 2018, 5:00 am
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 (any source of electrical, mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, chemical, thermal, or other energy) during service and maintenance activities.
Posted: December 3, 2018, 5:00 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: December 3, 2018, 5:00 am
The industrial internet of things (IIoT) has significantly impacted safety for workers and entire companies, and many results are undoubtedly positive. However, since IIoT devices connect to the internet, organizations must follow cybersecurity best practices to ensure cybercriminals don't infiltrate systems and cause dangerous malfunctions.
Posted: November 28, 2018, 3:00 pm
We all know that good safety training helps to keep workers safe. But anyone who ever crammed for a test in school knows that something you memorize for just one day is something you’ll forget next week. So what can you do to ensure that the safety lessons learned in training stick with your workers on the job?
Posted: November 27, 2018, 5:00 am

A Pennsylvania metal parts manufacturer thought it already had an “exceptional” safety program when it reached out to a government program for assistance. Brockway-based Phoenix Sintered Metals, LLC, a family-owned manufacturer of sintered (compacted and formed without liquefaction) metal parts, is “committed to continuous improvement,” according to the company.

Posted: November 20, 2018, 4:00 pm
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
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
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
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
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

Electrical Safety

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

Despite fluctuations from year to year, the number of fatal electrical injuries experienced by contract workers has followed an upward direction, according to a report by released by the National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA) and written by Richard Campbell using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries.
Posted: January 9, 2019, 5:00 pm
Michigan’s Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) posted the preliminary details of the incident: “A two person crew was getting set to replace an electrical pole and while removing the new pole from their truck, contacted the overhead 7200-volt electrical line with the truck boom causing a 51-year-old journeyman line worker at the back of the truck to be electrocuted.”
Posted: December 6, 2018, 7:07 pm
ASTM F18 voted by 92 percent to allow testing of ASTM D120 and ASTM F696 gloves for arc ratings. Many had been tested, but few manufacturers would label the gloves because the committee had included a statement in the scope to exclude D120 and F696 gloves from arc testing.
Posted: December 6, 2018, 5:00 am
The National Labor Relations Board found that an employer violated the National Labor Relations Act when it implemented a rule requiring employees to wear flame-resistant clothing at all times without providing notice or an opportunity to bargain to the union.
Posted: December 6, 2018, 5:00 am
Yallourn operator EnergyAustralia has released a second statement about an internal investigation into the cause of an explosion which killed a power station worker employed at the station for more than three decades.
Posted: December 6, 2018, 5:00 am
A market study report entitled “Global Arc Flash Protection System Market 2018 Industry Research Report” was recently published on QY Market Research. The base year of Arc Flash Protection System market study report is 2017, which gives statistical research data status (2013-2017) and forecast (2018-2025) and also categorizes the Arc Flash Protection System market into the key region, manufacturers, type (Arc Flash Detection & Control System, Personal Protective Equipment, Arc Flash Protection System), and application (Utilities, Manufacturing & Processing Industries, Oil & Gas, Transportation & Infrastructure).
Posted: December 6, 2018, 5:00 am
An arc flash is to blame for a recent incident of power problems and multiple outages at Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks, CT but officials are still investigating exactly why the backup systems didn’t kick in when the situation occurred.
Posted: December 6, 2018, 5:00 am
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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