Regulatory Roundup, January 27

Regulatory Roundup is a weekly compilation of employee wellness and safety news. Please share this information with your policyholders as appropriate. For suggestions, contact Ashley Mikytuck at ext. (512) 224-3986.

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

moneyIncreased penalties take effect

In August 2016, OSHA penalties increased about 78 percent, marking the first time they had been updated since 1990. In accordance with inflation, the penalties were raised again. As of January 13, 2017 the fines have increased about 1 percent…MORE

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)

noNIOSH issues final documentation for chemical carcinogens

NIOSH published a final document a couple of weeks ago regarding carcinogens in the workplace. The new policy does not use the well-known term, “recommended exposure limit (REL),” but instead references a starting point for control, called the “risk management limit for carcinogens” (RML-CA). The change is attributed to the underlying idea that there is no safe exposure level to a carcinogen and that elimination or substitution are the primary ways to prevent occupational cancer…MORE

lockWearable sensors introduce ethics concern

As technology continues to advance and workplace health concerns grow, wearable sensors have been increasingly popular. They can provide real-time readings and keep workers safer, but there are concerns about the accuracy and security of the data. A proposed ethics framework should help ensure that innovation does not outpace ethical considerations by examining the benefits, intrusiveness and potential consequences of monitoring programs…MORE

The Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA)

New ruling for pre-shift examinations

A new rule has been issued to continue improving the safety of miners on the job. It is scheduled to become effective on May 23, 2017 and will require competent persons to examine the jobsite before work and fill out an examination record before the end of each shift. Additionally, operators will be required to quickly notify miners if there are conditions that could potentially harm their safety or health…MORE

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) 

declineAnnual analysis shows fewer  toxic chemicals released into air

The EPA’s annual Toxics Release Inventory National Analysis showed that releases of toxic chemicals into the air at industrial facilities dropped 56 percent since 2005. In particular, hydrochloric acid, sulfuric acid, toluene and mercury showed significantly lower releases. The data shows that regulatory actions are working to improve toxic air emissions. The report also provides citizens with information about what chemicals are in their area and how companies are working to prevent pollution…MORE

Studies, Resources, Trends, News

hands-inNew model can help teams better adapt to change

Teamwork and change are more prevalent in the workplace than ever before. Because of this, a research team presented a model that includes four key steps to help teams effectively adapt to change. They include recognizing the change, reframing the cognitive approach, responding by implementing the new approach and then reflecting on the change…MORE

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