Regulatory Roundup, December 18, 2015

Regulatory Roundup is Texas Mutual’s weekly digest of workplace safety and wellness news.

Texas Mutual News

Lessons from the field: It’s getting crowded in here
With the holiday shopping frenzy in full swing, OSHA reminds retailers to implement a crowd management plan…MORE

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)

Tight delivery deadlines drive risky behaviors among long-haul truckers
Semi TruckA new NIOSH survey reveals that 73 percent of long-haul truck drivers perceive their delivery deadlines as unrealistically tight, which may be an incentive for risky driving behaviors such as speeding, hours-of-service violations, and continuing to drive despite fatigue, bad weather or heavy traffic…MORE

National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Study highlights health risks associated with prolonged standing
Prolonged standing at work contributes to lower back and leg pain, cardiovascular problems, fatigue, discomfort and pregnancy-related health outcomes, according to an NIH study. Employers can protect employees by providing floor mats, sit-stand workstations/chairs, shoe inserts and hosiery or stockings…MORE

Pipeline & Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA)

Senate committee passes federal pipeline safety reauthorization bill
The bill reauthorizes the PHMSA through fiscal year 2019. One amendment to the bill requires the U.S. Comptroller General to conduct a review of states’ gas leak policies. Another requires the PHMSA’s administrator to provide un-redacted oil spill response plans if requested by three key congressional committees…MORE

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

OSHA, DOJ to hold managers criminally accountable for safety violations
A Philadelphia employer faces up to 25 years in prison after one of his employees fell 45 feet to his death while repairing a roof. The case represents a rare criminal conviction that may become more common under an agreement between OSHA and the Department of Justice…MORE

OSHA issues letter of interpretation on import/export labels for HCS
In the letter of interpretation, OSHA defines a container as any bag, barrel, bottle, box, can, cylinder, drum, reaction vessel, storage tank or the like that contains a hazardous chemical…MORE

15 years in the making, silica rule to debut February 2016
The rule lowers the permissible exposure limit for respirable crystalline silica to 50 micrograms per cubic meter of air calculated as an eight-hour time-weighted average, down from about 100 micrograms for general industry and 250 micrograms for construction and shipyards…MORE

OSHA to focus on complex inspections in 2016
OSHA employs a mere one inspector for every 3,500 workplaces. To get the most out of its limited resources, OSHA will focus on complex inspections in 2016…MORE

Draft injury and illness prevention document targets temp workers
Newly released draft guidance from an OSHA advisory committee recommends staffing firms and host employers implement a safety and health program describing their shared responsibility for protecting temporary workers…MORE

Federal Communications Commission (FCC)

FCC schedules second tower-safety workshop
In 2012, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration recorded two cell tower worker deaths. In 2013, that number jumped to 13, and it grew again in 2014 to 14 deaths. To reverse the trend, the FCC will host a safety workshop on Feb. 11, 2016…MORE

National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB)

NTSB oversize load safety alert cites Salado, Texas crash
Risk Sign
In March 2015, a truck carrying an oversize load on Interstate 35 in Salado struck the concrete bridge beams of an overhead highway bridge, causing the beams to fall into the travel lanes. Citing the Salado accident, the NTSB issued a safety alert reminding carriers to get permits for oversize loads…MORE

Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

BLS charts illustrate 2014 nonfatal injuries
The charts show the incidence rates and median days away from work broken down by occupation, as well as the causes of injuries and illnesses most commonly suffered by workers in specific occupations…MORE

Mine Safety & Health Administration (MSHA)

With holiday distractions plentiful, MSHA reminds miners to focus on the job to avoid injuries
From preparing for out-of-town guests to buying last-minute gifts, the holidays can consume our time, energy and attention. MSHA reminds miners that losing focus, even for a split-second, can yield deadly consequences on the job…MORE

Studies, news, resources

Wearable does the heavy lifting to prevent back strains
The device’s sensors detect workers’ movements and provide real-time feedback when they perform potentially high-risk activities…MORE

New device alerts drowsy drivers
The device is a Bluetooth headset that detects blinks and head nods, and then transmits the data to a smartphone. If drowsiness is detected, the headset alerts the driver…MORE

Walk this way: Study highlights risks of distracted walking
Distracted walkers veer off course by as much as 61 percent while texting and walking, according to a new study. Digitally distracted walkers are at risk of being hit by a vehicle, falling down stairs, tripping over a curb, walking into a glass door or falling into a fountain or swimming pool…MORE

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