Regulatory Roundup, June 23

Regulatory Roundup is a weekly compilation of employee wellness and safety news.

OSHA

Public meeting to strengthen Voluntary Protection Programs

OSHA will hold a public meeting on July 17 in Washington, D.C., to discuss the Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP), an initiative that supports the prevention of workplace injuries in private industries and federal agencies. A docket is open for those that are not able to attend in person…MORE

Centers for Disease Control

Safety tips to protect against the Zika virus

Last year, we saw an increase in reports of the Zika virus. More than a year later, the concern is still present. The Centers for Disease Control recently issued reminders for Zika safety. While the virus is known to cause birth defects, and pregnant women should take extra precaution, everyone should take steps to prevent mosquito bites…MORE

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

Interactive tool provides summer driving tips

Traffic accidents tend to occur more often in the summer time. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration launched an interactive tool which provides tips and reminders on making sure your vehicle is well-maintained, wearing seat belts, taking breaks when on long drives, and other considerations during the summer…MORE

Studies, resources, trends, news

Preventing fatalities from ignition of vapors

A hazard alert from OSHA, NIOSH, and the National Service, Transmission, Exploration & Production Safety network bring awareness to fatalities stemming from the ignition of vapors near a wellbore. Eighty-five deaths have been linked to fires or explosions. Prevention includes risk assessment, engineering controls and establishing safe practices and procedures…MORE

Prepare for a disaster in three steps

The Texas Department of State Health Services has developed a new website for families and businesses to prepare for disasters. In three steps, you can be prepared. The site offers plans and checklists, tips for evacuation routes and emergency documents you should have on file in case of an emergency…MORE

Online quiz helps bring awareness to dangerous dusts

Harmful dusts in the workplace can expose workers to health risks. A recent quiz on EHSToday sponsored by Camil APC tests your knowledge of dangerous dusts and provides resources for keeping your workers safe…MORE

Regulatory Roundup, June 16

June 16, 2017

Regulatory Roundup is a weekly compilation of employee wellness and safety news.

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

Hazard alert for oil and gas safety

OSHA worked with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) to produce a safety bulletin for workers involved in manual tank gauging and sampling at oil and gas extraction sites. The publication discusses hazards and recommendations for employee safety and health…MORE

Department of Transportation (DOT) 

The DOT invites input to improve infrastructure projects

The DOT is currently reviewing existing policies, guidelines and regulations in order to identify unnecessary obstacles for transportation infrastructure projects. It is asking affected stakeholders and the public for input on non-statutory requirements that should be removed or revised. Comments should be received before July 24. MORE

Studies, resources, trends, news

Safe driving tips that everyone should follow

Traffic incidents are the number one cause of workplace fatalities, which is why safety professionals have been warning of the dangers of on-the-job driving for years. A recent article published safe driving tips from OSHA and urges employers to talk about driving safety to all employees – even those who do not drive a vehicle on the job…MORE

Recognizing the signs of heatstroke is crucial during summer months

Outdoor workers face a severe hazard during the summer when engaging in physical exertion and being exposed to heat. Workers and supervisors need to know the signs of heatstroke and take preventative actions to avoid serious health effects or even death. Symptoms range from muscle cramps to disorientation, and hydration is a key preventative measure…MORE

Creating a strong safety culture

According to OSHA, employers dole out about $1 billion per week in direct workers’ compensation costs, and indirect costs can add up just as quickly. Industrial Safety & Hygiene News posted an article this week about why it pays to create a successful workplace safety culture and how to start one…MORE

Regulatory Roundup, June 9

Regulatory Roundup is a weekly compilation of employee wellness and safety news.

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

Heat safety app is updated

OSHA partnered with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) to redesign the OSHA-NIOSH Heat Safety Tool mobile app. The app determines heat index values based on temperature and humidity. The director of NIOSH, John Howard, M.D., explained that most workers rely on employers to provide breaks and drinking water, but this app puts life-saving information in the hands of both workers and employers…MORE

OSHA proposes delay for crane certification mandate

This week, OSHA announced its intention to delay the mandate for construction crane operator certification by one year. OSHA will present its proposal to the Advisory Committee on Construction Safety and Health during a teleconference on June 20. The mandate in question would adjust the basis of certification to only consider the type of crane…MORE

Texas Department of Insurance (TDI)

DWC will host regional summit on July 18

The division of workers’ compensation will host a regional workplace safety summit in Austin on July 18. The workshop will cover maintenance hazards, occupational driving programs, forklift training programs and OSHA recordkeeping…MORE

National Safety Council (NSC)

NSC warns of preventable injury rise during summer months

Most deaths from preventable accidents occur during July and August, according to the NSC. To combat this, NSC urges everyone to use National Safety Month to re-focus on safety both at work and at home. NSC also provides tips for reducing injury risks…MORE

Studies, resources, trends, news

Texas bans texting and driving

According to TxDOT, one in five car accidents are caused by distracted driving. Earlier this week, Governor Greg Abbott announced that he signed the texting and driving ban into law, which will take effect September 1. Texas joins about 47 other states in this effort to reduce distracted driving…MORE

Stand down for trench safety

The National Utility Contractors Association (NUCA), with OSHA’s support, is requesting that employers across the county hold a trench safety stand down during the week of June 19. NUCA aims to raise awareness of the hazards involved with trenching and excavation operations and reduce injuries…MORE

Safety steps for small businesses

Based on U.S. Small Business Administration standards, small businesses account for 49 percent of the private sector. NIOSH data indicates that these businesses are more likely to experience workplace injuries and illnesses. The EHS Daily Advisor published an article about the three key steps small businesses should take to keep workers safe: know the hazards, prevent and control hazards and train employees…MORE

Regulatory Roundup, June 2

Regulatory Roundup is a weekly compilation of employee wellness and safety news.

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

New transportation module available in OSHA eTool

About 40 percent of fatalities in the oil and gas industry stem from highway vehicle accidents. To help address this, a newly developed transportation module is now available with the OSHA Oil and Gas eTool, a training resource on common industry hazards and solutions. The eTool offers training on transporting personnel and equipment, vehicle operation at well sites, all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and utility task vehicles (UTVs)…MORE

OSHA teams up with the FCC for communication tower safety

The FCC and OSHA created a joint workshop in 2014 and have now released best practice guidelines for safely working on and around communication towers. The guidelines are meant to be informal and do not impose new safety obligations. They center around hazards such as falls, structural collapses, struck-by hazards and improper rigging and hoisting…MORE

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)

NIOSH studies the relationship between job factors and health

NIOSH recently conducted a study and found that work duties, a lack of paid sick leave and psychosocial factors raise the risk of poor worker health. Researchers analyzed survey results from more than 10,000 employed adults across many occupations. Participants in business operations were more likely to rate their health as fair or poor, while workers with no paid sick leave or a work-life imbalance were more likely to rate their health as poor…MORE

National Safety Council (NSC)

National safety month begins

The NSC and organizations across the county observe National Safety Month each year in June. The event focuses on reducing injuries both on and off the clock. Topics this year include falls, fatigue, active shooter preparation and ergonomics…MORE

Free train-the-trainer workshops

The National Safety Council has partnered with the Texas Department of Transportation to host free train-the-trainer workshops throughout Texas this summer. Topics include distracted, impaired and aggressive driving along with passenger restraint. After completion of the course, participants will receive copies of the curriculum to present to their companies…MORE

Studies, resources, trends, news

New technology leads to new types of injuries

The possibilities of new technology are exciting for the safety training world, but many experts are beginning to study the possible side effects such as “BlackBerry thumb” or “laptop back.” A safety report from a new Apple eye-mounted prototype device was recently released and it seems that testers were experiencing eye pain. Experts warn that companies incorporating virtual reality training need to be aware of potential hazards such as drowsiness or eye pain and train for them accordingly…MORE

Regulatory Roundup, May 19

Regulatory Roundup is a weekly compilation of employee wellness and safety news.

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

‘Volks’ rule is re-introduced

This week, Democrats introduced The Accurate Workplace Injury and Illness Records Restoration Act. The bill would bring back the recordkeeping rule that was overturned in April and clarified employers’ obligations to record and maintain logs for five years. The legislation required OSHA to issue a new regulation within 180 days. Additionally, it amends the six-month statute of limitation on citations and instead starts the six-month clock when OSHA identifies a continuing violation…MORE

OSHA plans to propose extension of electronic submissions

OSHA recently updated its recordkeeping page to state that electronic submissions are not being accepted at this time. The administration also intends to propose an extension of the July 1, 2017 deadline by which employers are required to submit their Form 300A electronically…MORE

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)

May edition of Research Rounds now available

This month’s edition of NIOSH Research Rounds is now available. Research includes: a link between work-related styrene exposure and asthma and lung disease, an evaluation of fit-testing systems, a method of testing for bacteria in foods, and a study of diesel exhaust and other health risks in fire stations…MORE

The American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE)

ASSE has a plan for OSHA

In the midst of ASSE considering a name and logo change, the society has also been preparing a set of recommendations for OSHA to increase its ability to better protect workers on a tighter budget. The recommendations were vetted by safety professionals and encompass a shift from being compliance-driven to becoming an organization focused on analyzing and removing workplace dangers…MORE

Studies, resources, trends, news

Inaugural Safe + Sound Week to be held in June

OSHA, the American Industrial Hygiene Association, ASSE, National Safety Council and NIOSH teamed up to host the first Safe + Sound Week, June 12-18. The event is aimed at raising awareness of the value of successful safety and health programs. There are free events being held across the country, and employers are encouraged to join in and start their safety programs or energize an existing one…MORE

ISEA releases a new version of fall protection guide

The International Safety Equipment Association (ISEA) updated its’ Personal Fall Protection Equipment Use and Selection Guide to accommodate the recent OSHA rules for walking-working surfaces as well as fall protection in general industry. The document walks through the process of developing a program, selecting proper equipment and using it correctly. It’s available for free in a PDF document…MORE

Regulatory Roundup, May 12, 2017

Regulatory Roundup is a weekly compilation of employee wellness and safety news.

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

Minnesota senator introduces worker safety bill

This month, Senator Al Franken introduced the “Protecting America’s Workers Act,” which would update the Occupational Safety and Health Act and improve workplace conditions. The bill would extend OSHA coverage to currently excluded workers, strengthen penalties as well as worker rights and enhance antidiscrimination laws. Senator Sherrod Brown from Ohio and Senator Elizabeth Warren from Massachusetts are co-sponsors of the bill…MORE

National Safety Council (NSC)

2017 injury facts are in

The NSC recently released its 2017 edition of Injury Facts and although workplace fatalities increased, the number of deaths is not rising as quickly as incidents away from work. Transportation-related deaths are still at the top of the charts at 41.2 percent of all workplace fatalities. However, the NSC is also starting to focus on the increasing problem of fatigue and its relationship to unintentional injuries…MORE

Studies, resources, trends, news

What Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s NASCAR retirement says about workplace safety

When Dale Earnhardt Jr. announced his decision to retire from NASCAR, he mentioned concerns about recent concussions and the possibility of future incidents. Another driver, Carl Edwards, also retired recently due to safety concerns. Safety professionals are drawing key lessons out of these actions, saying that safer workplaces are often more enticing than more money. Poor safety cultures lead to higher turnover, so consider improving your safety program now…MORE

North America celebrates NAOSH Week

The North American Occupational Safety and Health Week (NAOSH) was established in 1997 with an agreement between Canada, the U.S. and Mexico, and it was celebrated this week, May 7-13. During the week, employers, employees and the public are encouraged to focus on the importance of preventing injuries and illnesses in the workplace and in the community…MORE

Spending bill means OSHA is safe for 2017

Congress passed a spending bill this month that will leave OSHA’s funding unaffected for the remainder of fiscal year 2017. Additionally, NIOSH received an increase from what was originally proposed. The Mine Safety and Health Administration received a small cut overall. Future funding for all agencies is still unclear, but quite a few organizations have been sending letters to the House and Senate requesting that funding remain close to current levels…MORE

Regulatory Roundup, May 5

Regulatory Roundup is a weekly compilation of employee wellness and safety news.

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

Beryllium proposal sent to White House, possibly reducing safety standards

OSHA has been reviewing its beryllium rule after construction and shipyard industries raised concerns. The administration sent a proposed rule to the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review on April 27. After it’s approved by the OMB, OSHA will have to publish a new proposed rule in the Federal Registrar and cite a basis for weakening the standards. It’s expected that the rule will face legal challenges from labor organizations … MORE

Stand-down starts May 8

OSHA, NIOSH and the Center for Construction Research and Training will hold the fourth annual National Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction next week. Employers are encouraged to focus their training and discussions on fall prevention and hazard recognition. The campaign page on OSHA’s website has more information about events being held … MORE

American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA)

Proposed bill aims to improve teen worker health

About 80 percent of teens are members of the workforce and they’re twice as likely to be injured on the job compared to adults. AIHA partnered with NIOSH to develop the Safety Matters program, which raises awareness and provides skills for a safe work environment. AIHA is also heavily supporting Texas House Bill 2010. Proponents of the bill believe it will address the issue by incorporating workplace safety and training information in public school curriculum and hope to see it enacted into law before the end of May … MORE

Studies, resources, trends, news

Acosta is confirmed as secretary of labor

Vice President Mike Pence administered the oath of office to Alexander Acosta on April 28, swearing him in as the new secretary of labor. The Senate confirmed him the previous day in a bipartisan vote of 60-38. Acosta served in the Department of Justice during the George W. Bush administration and was also a member of the National Relations Board … MORE

Study shows that workers should replace caffeine with exercise

Research from the University of Georgia showed that 10 minutes of walking up and down stairs at a low-intensity pace resulted in more energy than 50 milligrams of caffeine, or a standard can of soda. Participants did not show significant boosts in memory or attention, but the short exercise did result in a small increase in motivation … MORE

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