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The Department of the Interior’s Occupational Health and Safety Program supports the Department’s Mission to protect and provide access to our Nation's natural and cultural heritage by:

  • Keeping employees and volunteers well,
  • Keeping employees and volunteers on the job, and
  • Reducing accident related losses.

Top 10 Most Frequently Cited Standards


ANNOUNCEMENTS


Virginia Cites Contractor for Exposing Workers to Silica Hazards
Virginia Occupational Safety and Health issued five citations and $304,130 in penalties to Lanford Brothers Company for exposing workers to respirable crystalline silica hazards while using jackhammers to remove concrete from bridge piers. Inspectors determined that the company did not provide adequate eye and respiratory protection, failed to assess each worker for exposure to respirable crystalline silica, and permitted workers to use jackhammers and concrete saws without proper control methods.


Ohio Tool Manufacturer Cited After Employee Suffers Amputation
ArtiFlex Manufacturing was cited for exposing workers to amputation hazards after an employee’s finger was partially amputated. Inspectors determined that the company failed to guard pinch points on a conveyor belt, a violation the company was also cited for in 2016. ArtiFlex faces penalties of $213,411, and has been placed in OSHA’s Severe Violator Enforcement Program. Read the news release for more information.


Two Colorado Construction Companies Cited After Worker’s Fatal Fall
OSHA cited Hammers Construction, Inc., and Montes Construction, LLC, after a worker fell while installing metal roofing panels. Inspectors determined the companies failed to use adequate fall protection and restrict workers from standing on the mid-rails of scissor lifts. Montes Construction was previously cited for failing to provide fall protection, and now faces a willful citation. OSHA proposed penalties totaling $177,893. Read the news release for more information.


Hawaii Company Cited for Fall Protection and Energy Control Violations
Hawaii Occupational Safety and Health issued four citations and $47,080 in penalties to ABM Industry Groups, LLC, for exposing working to falls and hazardous energy. Inspectors concluded that the company failed to provide guard railing on an elevated open-sided platform, train workers on the control of hazardous energy, and conduct periodic inspections of hazardous energy control procedures.


Free Webinar on Protecting Temporary Workers from Noise Exposure


occupational noise exposure

Through its alliance with OSHA, the American Staffing Association will host a free webinar on Sep. 12 at 3 p.m. ET on protecting temporary workers from workplace noise exposure. This webinar will review OSHA’s new temporary worker bulletin on Noise Exposure and Hearing Conservation, summarize the elements of a hearing conservation program, and outline staffing firm and host employer responsibilities. For more information and to register, visit the webinar website.


Product Safety Recalls
http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Recalls/


Regional Construction Safety Campaign Shifts Focus to Struck-By Hazards


Focus Four Hazards: Falls - Electrocution - Struck-by - Caught-in or -between

Last month, OSHA launched a four-month campaign in the Mid-Atlantic states to address the four leading causes of fatal injuries in construction. In March, the campaign focused on electrical hazards. Throughout April, it will emphasize struck-by hazards with outreach events and toolbox talks on equipmentwork zone drivingfalling objectssecuring loads,head protection, and examining a struck-by incident. Falls will be the focus next month and caught-in/-between hazards in June.
The campaign partners include OSHA consultation projects, state occupational safety and health agencies in Maryland and Virginia, the Mid-Atlantic Construction Safety Council, and the General Builders and Contractors Association. For more information, contact OSHA Assistant Regional Administrator Nicholas DeJesse in Philadelphia.


US Forest Service and OSHA Form Alliance to Improve Worker Safety and Health


Alliance Program logo - Alliance, An OSHA Cooperative Program

The U.S. Forest Service – North Region signed a two-year agreement with OSHA to focus on safety and health issues in the forest industry, including facility and field hazard identification, and employee safety training. The OSHA Alliance Program fosters collaborative relationships with groups committed to worker safety and health. Alliance partners help OSHA reach targeted audiences, such as employers and workers in high-hazard industries, and give them better access to workplace safety and health tools and information.


List of Authorized Outreach Trainers Now Available Online


List of Authorized Outreach Trainers Now Available Online

OSHA’s website now has a searchable list of authorized Outreach trainers to assist the public in finding authorized instructors for the10- and 30-hour Outreach classes. The list provides trainer names and contact information, and indicates which course the trainer is authorized to teach (construction, general industry, maritime, or disaster site worker classes). OSHA expects the list to grow as more Outreach trainers are added. If you are a trainer who is interested in having your information listed, contact your Authorizing Training Organization.


OSHA Alliance Partners Commit to Improving Worker Safety and Health


Alliance Program logo - Alliance, An OSHA Cooperative Program

The OSHA Alliance Program fosters collaborative relationships with groups committed to worker safety and health. Alliance partners help OSHA reach targeted audiences, such as employers and workers in high-hazard industries, and give them better access to workplace safety and health tools and information.


Safe + Sound Campaign: Spring Into Action with a Safety and Health Program


Safe + Sound Campaign

Start fresh this spring by using OSHA resources to make a clean sweep of hazards that can cause injuries and illnesses. Join a free webinar, “Three Core Elements of Effective Safety and Health Programs,” on April 25 to get ideas about showing management leadership, encouraging worker participation, and finding and fixing hazards in your workplace. Use our new fact sheet, Walk-Arounds for Safety Officers to guide your efforts to find and fix hazards. Visit our website for more information on safety and health programs.


American Chemistry Council Creates Guidance for Working with Isocyanates in the Automobile Industry


OSHA
Through its Alliance with OSHA, the American Chemistry Council developed an infographic that provides personal protective equipment (PPE) recommendations for the automotive refinish market. The infographic provides general information on the importance of PPE during the refinishing process. High performance polyurethane coatings used in automotive refinishing applications, can present health hazards from skin contact or breathing in vapors, if appropriate PPE is not used during the painting process.


Dallas Area Office Recognized by Regional Hispanic Contractors Association


Basil Singh (left) accepts the RHCA's John Kelly Safety Award on behalf of OSHA's Dallas Area Office.
Basil Singh (left) accepts
the RHCA's John Kelly
Safety Award on behalf
of OSHA's Dallas
Area Office.


OSHA’s Dallas Area Office received the 2017 John Kelly Safety Award from the Regional Hispanic Contractors Association (RHCA), for its work and collaboration with the RHCA to encourage contractors to develop safety and health programs to prevent worker injuries and illnesses. The Dallas office and the RHCA have been in an Alliance since 2014; which has resulted in the sharing of resources, collaborating during RHCA Safety Committees, OSHA 10-hour Construction Safety Courses, and the monitoring of Susan B. Harwood Grant program free construction safety training.

 


Washington Area Office Moves to New Location
After 45 years in Bellevue, Wash., federal OSHA’s area office has moved to Seattle, and will now be known as the Washington Area Office. The office is at 300 Fifth Avenue, Suite 1260, Seattle, WA 98104. The phone number is 206-757-6677.


Product Safety Recalls
http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Recalls/


OSHA Extends Compliance Date for Electronically Submitting Injury, Illness Reports
OSHA has extended the date that employers must electronically report injury and illness data through the Injury Tracking Application (ITA) to Dec. 15, 2017. This extension allows employers additional time to become familiar with the new electronic reporting system that was launched Aug. 1, 2017.
OSHA’s final rule to Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses requires certain employers to electronically submit injury and illness information that they are already required to keep under existing OSHA regulations. For more information, see the news release.


OSHA Warns of Hazards When Using Roof Tarping in Hurricane Recovery Work


Roof Tarping (Blue Roof)

Reinforced plastic tarps, commonly called “Blue Roofs,” provide temporary protection for the roofs of homes and other buildings damaged during severe weather such as a hurricane or tornado. When employees access roofs to install these tarps, they are at risk of falls, electrocutions, and other hazards. In a new fact sheet, OSHA recommends steps that employers can follow to help keep workers safe.

 


Serbian Delegation Meets with OSHA to Discuss Whistleblower Protections
On Nov. 17, OSHA met with a three-member Serbian delegation to discuss best practices in the management of a whistleblower protection program. The delegation was in Washington, D.C., to kick off a three-week visit to several U.S. cities as part of the Department of State’s International Visitor Leadership Program. Members of the delegation learned how OSHA’s whistleblower program handles Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) and Consumer Financial Protection Act (CFPA) cases. In Serbia they will be involved with new anti-corruption and fraud units.


Idaho Tea Distributor Reduces Injuries with Help from OSHA’s On-Site Consultation Program


Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP). Consultation: An OSHA Cooperative Program

R.C. Bigelow is a marketer of blended teas headquartered in Fairfield, Conn. The company’s Boise, Idaho, distribution facility contacted OSHA’s On-Site Consultation Program for help lowering its rate of recordable injuries. Bigelow used the consultation visit to begin a team approach to instilling ownership of safety practices and principles at all levels of the organization. The company has since reduced its injury and illness rates below the industry national average.  This dedication to protecting workers earned it acceptance into OSHA’s Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program, which recognizes small businesses that operate an exemplary safety and health program. For more information, see Bigelow’s success story.


Product Safety Recalls
http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Recalls/


OSHA Resumes Regular Enforcement in Florida and Georgia
OSHA has resumed normal enforcement throughout parts of Florida and Georgia after temporarily suspending most programmed enforcement actions following Hurricane Irma. In the hurricane’s aftermath, OSHA provided compliance assistance and outreach to employers and workers involved in the cleanup and recovery operations in the two states. Thousands of crews and individual workers received job safety and health technical assistance. Employers and employees working in affected counties may call OSHA’s toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742), or go online to reach agency representatives in Florida or Georgia who can provide on-site assistance. For more information, read the news release.


New Fact Sheets Available on Protecting Workers in the Shipyard and Maritime Industries

OSHA has released four new fact sheets on protecting workers from common hazards found in the shipyard and maritime industries. The subjects covered by the four fact sheets are pedestal crane safetyhousekeeping safetyfire and rescue in shipyard employment, and safe baggage handling.


Wyoming OSHA’s On-Site Consultation Program Helps Energy Company Reduce Injuries and Costs


Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP). Consultation: An OSHA Cooperative Program

WBI Energy Transmission Inc., provides gas transportation, storage, and gathering services in Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming. The company’s plant in Worland, Wyo., is working with Wyoming OSHA’s On-Site Consultation Program to identify and implement best practices to protect workers. Since the plant joined OSHA’s Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program in 2013, they have reduced injury and illness rates—with no OSHA recordable incidents from 2015 through 2016—and lowered insurance costs. For more information, see the company’s success story.



Industry Coalition Continues Successful Program to Better Protect Workers

Tom Galassi, director of OSHA’s enforcement programs (in orange vest), talks to an employee at a module assembly line at the New Carlisle, Pa., fiber manufacturing plant of HTIW Coalition member and PSP participant Unifrax I LLC. Tom Galassi, director of OSHA’s enforcement programs, talks to an employee at a module assembly line at the New Carlisle, Pa., fiber manufacturing pla

OSHA recently renewed its agreement with the High Temperature Insulating Wool (HTIW) Coalition to protect worker safety and health. The coalition represents manufacturers of a broad range of HTIW products that are essential in industrial applications, such as thermal insulation of furnaces and fire protection and prevention purposes. The coalition established its Product Stewardship Program (PSP) 15 years ago to reduce workplace exposures to refractory ceramic fiber (RCF).

The coalition, its member companies, and their customers, strongly emphasize the use of engineering controls and work practices as the primary measures for protecting workers from RCF exposure. Furthermore, the coalition has adopted an RCF exposure limit lower than that required by OSHA. Through its PSP program, the coalition is establishing exposure and medical monitoring, and developing improved workplace controls and practices, and respiratory protection program and training.


Revised whistleblower complaint Form now online

OSHA recently revised its whistleblower complaint form to help users file a complaint with the appropriate agency. The form provides workers with another option for submitting retaliation complaints to the U.S. Department of Labor’s OSHA. The new form is available in English and Spanish.
Workers can also file complaints by fax, mail or hand-delivery; or calling an OSHA regional or area office. For more information, see the news release.

revised publications page

OSHA publications made easier to find with revised webpage

OSHA’s publications webpage has been redesigned based on user data and feedback to better engage its many audiences and improve the way it functions. New and popular publications for specific industries or hazards are now easier to download and order. The webpage is formatted for all devices and platforms, from desktop monitors to smartphones.


Alaskan automotive shop achieves safety excellence with help from On-site Consultation Program


Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP). Consultation: An OSHA Cooperative Program

Spruce Park Auto Body Inc. of Anchorage, Alaska, contacted OSHA’s On-site Consultation Program to learn cost-effective ways to improve its safety and health program. After the initial consultation visits, the company implemented advanced safety measures such as upgrading respiratory protection controls and improving its hazard communication program. In 2001, the company was admitted into OSHA’s Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program for operating an exemplary safety and health program. Since then, they have instituted additional safety measures such as allowing staff to give feedback about the personal protective equipment they use and reducing worker exposure to hazardous compounds by switching from solvent-based to water-based paints. As a result of the company’s continued participation in SHARP, its injury and illness rates dropped to and remained at zero since 2011. For more information, see Spruce Park Auto Body’s success story.


OSHA Alliance Partners Commit to Improving Worker Safety and Health


Alliance Program logo - Alliance, An OSHA Cooperative Program

The OSHA Alliance Program fosters collaborative relationships with groups committed to worker safety and health. Alliance partners help OSHA reach targeted audiences, such as employers and workers in high-hazard industries, and give them better access to workplace safety and health tools and information.

  • The MonDaks Safety Network renewed a five-year agreement with OSHA’s Billings, Mont., office to reduce worker exposures to hazards in the upstream oil and gas industry.
  • The American Mushroom Institute renewed a five-year agreement with OSHA’s Philadelphia office to address hazards including amputations, chemicals, electrical shocks, and falls. The Alliance developed a training app to educate and train mushroom farm and packinghouse employees on safety best practices.
  • The Upper Bucks County Technical School renewed a three-year agreement with OSHA’s Allentown, Pa., office to increase awareness about workplace hazards and the use of the hierarchy of controls as a means to prevent them. The Alliance delivers safety and health training on hazards including falls, struck-by, caught-between, electrical, material handling, and chemicals.
  • The Northeast Florida Safety Council renewed a five-year agreement with OSHA’s Jacksonville office to develop effective safety and health tools, such as a fall protection program focused on residential construction.
  • The OSHA Training Institute Education Centers of Region IV renewed a five-year agreement with OSHA’s Atlanta office to provide guidance and access to training resources that will help protect the health and safety of workers.
  • The Consulate General of Mexico in El Paso signed a two-year agreement with OSHA’s El Paso, Texas, office to provide workers with guidance and access to training resources related to the prevention of falls in construction, as well as other occupational safety and health hazards.
  • The Safety Peer Group Network signed a two-year agreement with OSHA’s Allentown office to prevent exposure to hazards related to ergonomics, healthcare environmental conditions, and chemicals, and to promote workplace safety and health programs.


Company Cited after Inspection Finds Hazards Remain at New Jersey Warehouse
OSHA conducted an inspection of Mane Concept Inc., after receiving a complaint of imminent safety hazards. Inspectors found that the Moonachie, N.J., hair distribution company failed to keep exit routes unobstructed, improperly used work space around an electrical box for storage, and did not properly store materials to prevent struck-by hazards. OSHA issued one repeat, one serious, and two willful violations, and proposed penalties totaling $181,280. The company was cited in February for similar violations. Read the news release for more information.


Pennsylvania Contractor Cited after Hazards Lead to Fatal Electrocution
A Pittsburgh masonry contractor has been cited for exposing workers to serious dangers after a laborer was electrocuted while doing residential restoration work. Following an investigation of the incident, OSHA issued citations to Ski Masonry LLC for allowing employees to work within 10 feet of overhead, energized, and uninsulated electrical lines; failing to provide fall protection; and using scaffolding without a secure base plate. Proposed penalties are $201,354. See the new release for more information.


OSHA and New York Manufacturer Reach Settlement to Improve Safety and Health
OSHA has reached a settlement agreement with Acme Parts Inc. to improve workplace safety and health at the company’s facility in Brooklyn. OSHA found high levels of lead throughout the facility presenting serious hazards to employees. Under the terms of the agreement, Acme Parts will pay $40,000 in penalties. Additionally, the company will hire a qualified lead hazards and abatement consultant to evaluate the facility and to recommend improved practices. For more information, see the news release.


Virginia Cites Tree Company for Safety Violations after Worker Fatality
The Virginia Occupational Safety and Health Program issued six citations and $100,270 in penalties to Lucas Tree Experts in Chesapeake for safety violations after a worker was electrocuted while trimming a tree near powerlines. Inspectors determined that the company failed to: provide personal protective equipment; follow requirements on line clearance and proximity to energized lines; and ensure workers were properly secured to trees with climbing and position ropes.


Hawaii Cites Company for Safety and Health Violations after Ammonia Release
The Hawaii Occupational Safety and Health Division issued 14 citations and $107,800 in penalties to Hawaiian Ice Company in Honolulu for exposing workers to inhalation hazards resulting from an uncontrolled release of anhydrous ammonia. Inspectors concluded that the company lacked procedures to isolate the chemical while workers were servicing refrigeration equipment. The company also failed to conduct in-house inspections, provide portable monitoring devices to detect leaks, and train workers.



Prevent the Spread of Seasonal Flu


Picture of a woman sitting at a desk and covering her nose with a tissue.

OSHA's Seasonal Flu webpage offers information about how to reduce the spread of the flu in workplaces. It provides information on basic precautions that should be used by employers and workers in all workplaces, such as frequent hand washing and covering coughs and sneezes with a tissue. OSHA provides additional precautions that should be used in healthcare settings, such as strictly following infection control practices; using gloves, gowns, and other protective equipment to reduce exposures; and encouraging sick workers to stay home.

 


Industry Guide Provides Best Practices for High School Construction Programs
A new guide is available to help administrators, instructors, and others involved in Career and Technical Education (CTE) incorporate safety and health into construction training programs. Each year, more than 75,000 students enter two-year post-secondary CTE programs that prepare new and young workers to enter careers in various fields. Researchers from U.C. Berkeley and West Virginia University conducted surveys and site visits to understand how construction-focused CTE programs prepare students in the areas of safety and health. For more information, see Your Construction Safety Program: Safe Students, Safe Workers.


Compliance Date for Crane Operator Certification Requirements Set for November 10, 2018
OSHA issued a final rule that sets November 10, 2018, as the date employers in the construction industry must comply with a requirement for crane operator certification. The final rule became effective on November 9, 2017. After issuing the final cranes and derricks rule in August 2010, stakeholders expressed concerns regarding the rule’s certification requirements. In response, the agency published a separate final rule in September 2014, extending by three years the crane operator certification and competency requirements. The additional one-year extension provides more time for OSHA to complete a rulemaking to address stakeholder concerns related to the Cranes and Derricks in Construction standard. Read the news release for more information.


Product Safety Recalls
http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Recalls/


OSHA announces $10.5M funding opportunity for Susan Harwood Training grants


Susan Harwood Training Grant Program

OSHA today announced the availability of $10.5 million in Susan Harwood Training Grants to fund training and education for workers and employers to help them identify and prevent workplace safety and health hazards. The grants are available for nonprofit organizations including community and faith-based organizations, employer associations, labor unions, joint labor/management associations, Indian tribes, and colleges and universities. Recipients will create in-person, hands-on training and educational programs and develop materials for workers and employers in small businesses; industries with high injury, illness and fatality rates; and vulnerable workers who are underserved, have limited English proficiency or are temporary workers. Harwood applications must be submitted online no later than 11:59 p.m. EDT on Monday, Aug. 28. For more information, read the news release or visit Grants.gov.


OSHA alliance partners commit to better protect worker safety and health


Alliance Program logo - Alliance, An OSHA Cooperative Program

The OSHA Alliance Program fosters collaborative relationships with groups committed to worker safety and health. Alliance partners help OSHA reach targeted audiences, such as employers and workers in high-hazard industries, and give them better access to workplace safety and health tools and information.


Illinois company achieves safety excellence with help from On-site Consultation Program


Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP). Consultation: An OSHA Cooperative Program

Mechanical contractor Corrosion Monitoring Services Inc. in St. Charles, Ill., contacted OSHA’s On-site Consultation Program after realizing the company had many gaps in its safety and health program. After consulting with OSHA, CMS developed and implemented a Worker-to-Rescuer Program to train workers to transition into a rescue team capable of responding to any confined space emergency. In 2015, safety improvements led the company to a more than 60 percent reduction in its rate of total recordable injuries compared to the national average for its industry, with no injuries resulting in lost work. The company’s commitment to safety earned CMS entry in OSHA’s Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program. For more information, see the success story.


Minnesota cites company for safety violations following worker fatality
Minnesota OSHA issued $52,800 in penalties to Rahr Malting Co. in Shakopee for safety violations identified after a worker was fatally injured in January. Inspectors issued four serious citations to the company after determining that it failed to control potentially hazardous energy and provide point-of-operation machine guarding; as a result, a worker was caught in a machine and suffered fatal injuries.


California cites explosives manufacture after worker suffers serious injuries in explosion
California OSHA cited explosives manufacturer Pacific Scientific Energetic Materials Company $293,235 for multiple serious and willful workplace safety violations following the investigation of an explosion in Hollister that seriously injured a worker. Cal/OSHA inspectors cited the company for violations that included failure to: protect the employee’s workstation from explosive hazards; evaluate and control hazards associated with handling explosives during manufacture; and provide clear written safety instructions. Pacific Scientific was cited in 2007 and 2015 following incidents that also resulted in workers being seriously injured. For more information, read the news release.


Form for electronically submitting injury, illness data available Aug. 1


web-based form for submitting injury and illness data

On Aug. 1, OSHA will launch a web-based form that will allow employers to electronically submit required injury and illness data from their completed 2016 OSHA Form 300A. The webpage will offer three options for submitting data, and includes information on reporting requirements, a list of frequently asked questions, and a link to request assistance with completing the form.
OSHA published a notice of proposed rulemaking last month to extend the deadline for electronically submitting the data to Dec. 1, 2017. The proposed extension gives those affected sufficient time to familiarize themselves with the electronic reporting system, and provides the new administration an opportunity to review the new electronic reporting requirements prior to their implementation. For more information, read the news release.


Small Entity Compliance Guide for General Industry and Maritime

New guide will help small businesses comply with OSHA's silica rule for general industry and maritime
OSHA has released a Small Entity Compliance Guide for General Industry and Maritime to help small business employers comply with the agency's Final Rule to Protect Workers from Exposure to Respirable Crystalline Silica. The guide describes the steps that employers are required to take to protect employees in general industry and maritime from the hazards associated with silica exposure. These requirements include: assessing worker exposures; using engineering and work practice controls to keep exposures below a specified safety threshold; and offering medical exams to certain highly exposed workers. Enforcement of the final rule in general industry and maritime is scheduled to begin June 23, 2018.


Be prepared for summer weather!

OSHA has resources to help protect workers from summer weather hazards
OSHA provides resources for workplace preparedness and response to severe weather emergencies that can arise during summer, including: hurricaneswildfires and floodsas well as severe heat. OSHA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration encourage employers to be aware of weather forecasts, train workers on severe weather plans and keep emergency supplies, including a battery-operated weather radio.

 

window cleaners


Window cleaning association creates safety guide for workers
Through its alliance with OSHA, the International Window Cleaning Association has developed an online field guide for protecting the safety and health of window cleaners. The mobile-friendly guide offers best practices on identifying and avoiding fall, chemical, electrical and other hazards workers face on the job.

 


Product Safety Recalls
http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Recalls/


OSHA wants to hear how employers keep workers safe from the heat


Construction worker taking a break from working in the heat.

As summer and higher temperatures approach, employers should plan how they will reduce the risks of heat exposure faced by their workers. Those steps include gradually increasing shift lengths so workers can adapt to hot environments, providing frequent water breaks, allowing ample time to rest, and providing shade. We want to hear how employers and safety professionals keep workers safe from extreme heat.
Tweet your photos or links to @OSHA_DOL with the hashtags #WaterRestShade #ProTips or email your stories to OSHA.QuickTakes@dol.gov for possible inclusion in a future issue of QuickTakes.


Show your commitment to safety and health June 12-18 during Safe + Sound Week


Safe + Sound Week June 12-18 Show your commitment to safety

Join OSHA and its partners June 12-18 in a nationwide effort to raise awareness on the value of workplace safety and health programs. During Safe + Sound Week, organizations are encouraged to host events and activities that showcase the core elements of an effective safety and health program – management leadership, worker participation, and finding and fixing workplace hazards. Visit OSHA’s Safe + Sound Week page to view videos and a recorded webinar on how employers can participate. The page also features sample activities, social media resources, and an interactive map where you can add your own Safe + Sound Week event to others occurring across the United States and in other countries. For more information, read the news release.
Last month Governor Sam Brownback signed a proclamation officially recognizing Safe + Sound Week throughout the state of Kansas.


Contractors association to hold National Trench Safety Stand-Down June 19-24


Trench Safety Stand-Down June 19-24

Businesses and organizations are invited to raise awareness of trenching and excavation hazards by holding a safety stand-down during the week of June 19-24. The campaign, sponsored by the National Utility Contractors Association and the Safety Ambassadors Club with support from OSHA, encourages contractors, municipalities, the military and others involved in trenching operations to temporarily stop work and offer workers education and training about trenching hazards. According to the latest available data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the fatality rate in the U.S. for excavation work is 112 percent higher than in general construction. Visit the Stand-Down website to learn how you can stand-down this month to save lives.


Companies partner with OSHA to protect workers during Philadelphia construction project
Skanska USA and Shoemaker Construction Co. have entered into a Strategic Partnership with OSHA during a major shopping center construction project in Philadelphia. Under this partnership, OSHA will evaluate the effectiveness of the project site's safety and health program, designate an OSHA liaison to serve as a resource, meet quarterly with Shoemaker-Skanska to review project safety performance, and provide information on OSHA training resources. For more information, see Skanska’s news release.


OSHA alliance partners commit to better protect worker safety and health


Alliance Program logo - Alliance, An OSHA Cooperative Program

The OSHA Alliance Program fosters collaborative relationships with groups committed to worker safety and health. Alliance partners help OSHA reach targeted audiences, such as employers and workers in high-hazard industries, and give them better access to workplace safety and health tools and information.

  • The South Texas Exploration and Production Safety Network renewed a five-year agreement to reduce employee exposure to all hazards in the oil and gas exploration and production industry. In 2016, the alliance conducted a training session focusing on silica hazards associated with hydraulic fracturing.
  • The Hispanic Contractors Association de Tejas signed a two-year agreement to provide association members and others with guidance and training resources to help protect worker safety and health, particularly by preventing exposure to Focus-Four hazards in the construction industry.
  • The Construction Safety Leadership Alliance signed a two-year agreement to provide CSLA members and others with guidance and training resources that will help them protect the health and safety of construction workers. The alliance will stress preventing exposure to Focus-Four hazards and establishing strong safety leadership.
  • The Ship Workers Union Alliance signed a two-year agreement to provide union members, OSHA personnel, and others in the shipbuilding and repair industry, with safety and health training, hazard recognition skills, knowledge of OSHA's policies and procedures, and the identification and correction of hazards at the worksite through regular internal safety surveys.

Automotive repair association offers free online battery safety course


Coordinating Committee for Automotive Repair

Through its alliance with OSHA, the Coordinating Committee for Automotive Repair has launched a free, online safety and health training course for automotive workers who install, activate, or charge Absorbed Glass Mat batteries. The use of AGM batteries is increasingly common as the automotive industry has evolved toward more fuel-efficient features. Sign up online to take the free course.

 

National Integrated Heat Health Information System


New resource available with heat safety info from multiple federal agencies
The National Integrated Heat Health Information System offers one-stop shopping for tips to stay healthy in the heat. The website, which includes participation from the Centers for Disease Control, the Federal Emergency Management Administration, OSHA and other federal agencies, offers forecasts, tools and resources. Targeted populations include athletes, seniors, emergency responders and outdoor workers.


OSHA partnership creates resources on ensuring the safety of electric power workers

Electrical Transmission & Distribution Partnership

Multiple resources for protecting workers in the high-voltage electric line construction, transmission and distribution industry have been made available through the Electrical Transmission & Distribution Partnership. A white paper, describing the partnership’s accomplishments and goals, provides best practices for keeping workers safe. The partnership website includes links to training resources and a safety app available from the Apple Store and Google Play.




Product Safety Recalls

http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Recalls/



Dept. of Labor to offer employers free compliance assistance and training at March 28 forum in Oklahoma

DOL

The U.S. Department of Labor will hold a forum in Oklahoma City on Tuesday, March 28, to offer employers free assistance and training from the agencies that enforce federal labor laws. Representatives from OSHA and other agencies will answer questions and offer guidance on worker safety and health regulations; employee benefits requirements under the current Affordable Care Act; government contracts; veterans’ employment and training; and laws for wages, overtime and youth employment. The forum is scheduled to run 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. at The Francis Tuttle Technology Center. Seating is limited, so those interested in attending are encouraged to register online or contact the event organizer.


OSHA

Employers reminded to post injury and illness summaries through April

OSHA reminds employers of their obligation to post a copy of OSHA's Form 300A, which summarizes job-related injuries and illnesses logged during 2016. The summary must be displayed from February through April in a common area where notices to employees are usually posted. Businesses with 10 or fewer employees and those in certain low-hazard industries are exempt from OSHA recordkeeping and posting requirements.


OSHA warns recovery workers, employers and public of storm cleanup hazards

Tornado

As residents in Kansas and Missouri recover from the damage caused by recent tornadoes and severe storms, OSHA urges caution during cleanup and recovery efforts. Workers, employers and the public should be aware of hazards they may encounter, and steps needed to stay safe and healthy. "Recovery work should not put you in the recovery room," said Karena Lorek, OSHA's area director in Kansas City. "Our main concern is the safety and health of the workers and volunteers conducting cleanup activities." OSHA representatives are available in hard-hit areas to communicate with emergency responders, provide advice and distribute educational resources to assist in a safe clean-up of damage. For more information, see the news release.


OSHA's alliance partners commit to better protect worker safety and health

The OSHA Alliance Program fosters collaborative relationships with groups committed to worker safety and health. Alliance partners help OSHA reach targeted audiences, such as employers and workers in high-hazard industries, and give them better access to workplace safety and health tools and information.
The Twin Tiers Service, Transmission, Exploration, Production Safety Network has signed a new two-year agreement to address hazards associated with oil and gas operations.
The Nebraska Safety Council, Great Plains Safety and Health Organization, and National Safety Council Nebraska has signed a new two-year agreement to protect meat packing workers from exposure to fall, noise, electrocution, amputation and ergonomic-related hazards.
The Safety Council of Palm Beach County renewed a five-year agreement to develop safety and health tools on work zone safety, safety and health management systems, and other topics that will help prevent worker exposure to workplace hazards.
The University of Puerto Rico's Rio Piedras Campus renewed a two-year agreement to provide information, guidance, and training on struck-by, caught-by, fall, electrocution, chemical, and workplace violence hazards as well as emergency management issues.


Work Place Safety

Washington State releases two new apps to promote workplace safety

The Washington Division of Occupational Safety and Health has launched two free smartphone apps to enhance workplace safety. The Good Observation, Near-Miss and Accident Reporting app provides a method to document safety incidents in the workplace and can be used in training, hazard recognition and risk analysis. The SafeMe app offers safety lessons, videos and hazard identification for a number of entry-level retail jobs frequently held by teen workers.




Product Safety Recalls

http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Recalls/


 

Final rule on beryllium lowers exposure levels, will protect 62,000 workers

Beryllium products

An OSHA rule issued Jan. 6 dramatically lowers workplace exposure to beryllium, a useful metal that can be hazardous to workers when particles are inhaled through dust or fumes during processing. The new standards, which apply to general industry, construction, and shipyards, will lower the eight-hour permissible exposure limit to beryllium from 2.0 to 0.2 micrograms per cubic meter of air. When concentrations exceed those limits, employers will be required to take additional measures to protect workers. The rule becomes effective on March 10, 2017, after which employers have one year to implement most provisions. For more information, see the beryllium final rule webpage.




BLS: Nearly 5,000 workers died on the job in 2015

Bureau of Labor Statistics logo

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that 4,836 workers were killed on the job in the United States in 2015, a slight increase from the 4,821 who died in 2014. At the same time, the rate of fatal workplace injuries dropped slightly, from 3.43 to 3.38 per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers, Transportation incidents were the leading cause of worker deaths, accounting for more than one-fourth of all fatal work injuries in 2015.

 

Lockout/tagout - Photo showing a lock and tag with the words 'This tag & lock to be removed only by person shown on the other side'




Five key elements to an effective anti-retaliation program: Management commitment, Compliance concern response system, Anti-retaliation response syste

Reporting requirements reveal more than 7 amputations a day in U.S. workplaces

Since OSHA began requiring employers to report severe injuries in 2015, the agency has recorded on average more than seven amputations a day. The total national number is undoubtedly higher because our data do not include workplaces covered by state plans. More than 90 percent of the reported amputations involved fingers; workers also lost hands, toes, feet and other body parts. These injuries are preventable by ensuring that machines are de-energized whenever they're being serviced, and that machine guards or other engineering means are used to prevent contact with dangerous parts during operation. To learn more, read the blog.




Recommendations for Anti-Retaliation Programs released
OSHA's Whistleblower Protection Programs has issued Recommended Practices for Anti-Retaliation Programs to help employers create workplaces in which workers feel comfortable voicing safety and other concerns without fear of retaliation. The recommendations, which are advisory only and create no new legal obligations, are intended to apply to all public and private sector employers covered by the 22 whistleblower protection laws that OSHA enforces.

 




Dr. David Michaels, OSHA's longest-serving assistant secretary, departs after leading agency for seven years

Dr. David Michaels

After more than seven years as Assistant Secretary of Labor for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Dr. David Michaels, who began his tenure in December 2009, left the agency on Jan. 10, 2017, to rejoin the faculty of the Milken Institute School of Public Health at George Washington University. Deputy Assistant Secretary Jordan Barab will serve as Acting Assistant Secretary until noon on Jan. 20, 2017.

 

 




Wisconsin metal fabricator cited for safety failures following teenager's death
A 17-year-old worker clearing scrap underneath a laser-cutting machine was killed when the machine lowered, pinning him beneath. He had been on the job two weeks. OSHA's investigation found that employer, G.D. Roberts & Co. Inc., in Columbus, Wis., failed to ensure that machines were properly de-energized to prevent unintentional movement. OSHA cited the company for 16 safety and health violations, including failure to train employees on proper lockout/tagout procedures, and proposed penalties of $119,725. Read the news release for more information.




OSHA cites multiple employers after oil well flash fire kills one worker and burns three others in North Dakota
OSHA cited an oil well operator and two servicing companies following a flash fire that killed a worker and severely burned three others in Watford City, N.D. Operator XTO Energy and two servicing companies - Most Wanted Well Service LLC and Sherwood Enterprises Inc. - were cited for exposing workers to fire and explosion hazards and failing to provide flame-resistant clothing. Proposed penalties total $49,884. For more information, see the news release.




Medical clinic fined $260,000 for exposing maintenance workers to asbestos
A Wisconsin medical clinic sent maintenance workers into crawl spaces and other areas previously identified by the company as containing hazardous asbestos material, an OSHA investigation found. "Monroe Clinic knew its employees were working amid materials known to contain asbestos, and failed to inform them of the location of hazards and to protect them from exposure to a known carcinogen," said Ann Grevenkamp, OSHA's area director in Madison. The company was cited for 12 safety and health violations, including failing to provide protective clothing and respiratory protection. Proposed penalties total $261,890. Read the news release for more information.




Ohio plastics manufacturer placed in Severe Violator program after second worker injury in 18 months
An employee cutting rubber material at a New Philadelphia, Ohio, plastics manufacturing facility suffered a severe injury when a pneumatic bench cutter severed her finger. OSHA inspectors found that her employer, Lauren Manufacturing, failed to adjust the machine's light curtains, which serve as safeguards to prevent a worker's hand from coming in contact with the machine's operating parts. In January 2015, OSHA cited Lauren for lack of machine safety procedures after a worker's arm was crushed in a hydraulic mold press. The company was cited for 13 violations of machine safety procedures including, allowing temporary workers to operate machines without proper training, failing to implement lockout/tagout procedures, and exposing workers to live electrical contacts. Lauren Manufacturing was proposed penalties of $274,934 and placed in OSHA's Severe Violator Enforcement Program. For more information, read the news release.




Auto parts maker cited for numerous amputation and other hazards
During an inspection of Bosal Industries Georgia Inc., an automotive after-market parts manufacturer in Ypsilanti, the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration found numerous violations that exposed workers to amputation hazards Inspectors for the state agency determined that Bosal failed to provide machine guards on potentially hazardous machinery and failed to protect workers from an open manhole, among other violations. The company was cited for 19 violations and issued $265,000 in penalties. For more information, see the news release.




Contractor cited after collapse of unprotected trench kills worker
A Minnesota construction company was cited for failing to train and protect its employees following the collapse of an unprotected trench that trapped two workers, killing one of them. The Minnesota Occupational Safety and Health Administration, a state agency, cited Dave Perkins Contracting Inc. of Anoka for three serious violations and issued $50,825 in penalties.

The Whistleblower Protection Programs

 




Pipefitter who was fired after reporting unsafe conditions receives $275,000 in settlement with John Deere
A pipefitter previously employed by manufacturer John Deere will receive $204,315 in lost earnings and $70,685 in other damages in a settlement that resolves a U.S. District Court lawsuit filed under the anti-retaliation provision of the Occupational Safety and Health Act. The pipefitter was terminated from Deere's Moline, Ill., facility after reporting unsafe working conditions and filing a complaint with OSHA. The company will also prominently post information about worker rights in all workplaces. For more information, read the news release.

 




OSHA finds railroad retaliated against worker who reported track safety concerns

Federal Railroad Administration logo

An OSHA investigation found that BNSF Railway violated the Federal Railroad Safety Act when it terminated a track inspector for insubordination after the worker reported railroad track defects to management. OSHA ordered BNSF to pay more than $147,000 in back wages and damages and take other corrective actions. OSHA enforces the whistleblower provisions of the FRSA and 21 other statutes protecting employees who report violations in various industries. For more information, see the news release.

 




New members of the Whistleblower Protection Advisory Committee announced
Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez has appointed nine members to the Whistleblower Protection Advisory Committee. Members will serve through Nov. 30, 2018. WPAC advises and makes recommendations to the labor secretary and the assistant secretary for occupational safety and health on ways to improve the fairness, efficiency, effectiveness and transparency of OSHA's whistleblower protection activities. The complete list of WPAC members is available online.



Worker health and safety should be an integral part of sustainability efforts

Worker safety and health should be part of any sustainability plan

A growing number of employers are incorporating the concept of sustainability in their business strategies. This approach factors financial, social and environmental concerns as part of a business' bottom line. OSHA recently launched several resources—including a white paper, blog, and organizational profiles—to demonstrate why protecting worker safety and health should also be part of any sustainability effort. The white paper highlights ways sustainability can include innovative approaches for advancing safety and health. To learn more, read the news release and visit OSHA's sustainability webpage. To share your questions, suggestions and successes, contactsustainability@dol.gov.

 




Study confirms under-recording of workplace injuries, on-site medical units potential factor
recent article by two OSHA physicians, published in the Journal of Safety Research, describes the agency's efforts to improve employer recordkeeping. It also examines under-recording, which leads to inaccurately low counts of worker injuries. Under OSHA's recordkeeping and reporting requirements most employers with more than 10 employees must keep a record of serious work-related injuries and illnesses. Minor injuries requiring first aid only do not need to be recorded.

poorly-run medical units at poultry plants can be a factor in under-recording of injuries

The article identifies that poorly operated on-site nursing or first aid stations are a rarely recognized cause of under-recording. As an example, in some poultry plants, OSHA found that these stations were staffed by emergency medical technicians and licensed practical nurses with little to no nursing or medical supervision, who functioned without appropriate protocols and provided care beyond their scopes of practice. In some cases, workers were seen multiple times without referral for a definitive evaluation, diagnosis and treatment. By restricting treatment to first aid and preventing access to higher level medical care, these cases were kept off employer recordkeeping logs.




Final rule clarifies recordkeeping obligations

OSHA's injury and illness recordkeeping Form 300.

OSHA has issued a final rule that clarifies an employer's continuing obligation to make and maintain an accurate record of each recordable injury and illness. Effective Jan. 18, the new final rule more clearly states employers' obligations. "This rule simply returns us to the standard practice of the last 40 years," said OSHA Assistant Secretary Dr. David Michaels. "It is important to keep in mind that accurate records are not just paperwork; they have a valuable and potentially life-saving purpose." For more information, see the news release.

 




OSHA renews alliance with Colorado Safety Association to improve worker safety culture

Alliance Program logo - Alliance, An OSHA Cooperative Program

OSHA's Denver and Englewood, Colo., area offices and the Colorado Safety Association are renewing their 2012 alliance to reduce and prevent safety hazards in Colorado. Representatives of OSHA and CSA will continue to work together over the next four years to provide the association's members and others with information and training resources that will help prevent workplace injuries, and improve understanding of workers' rights and the responsibilities of employers under the Occupational Safety and Health Act. For more information, see the news release.




Three Utah recycling facilities achieve safety excellence with help from OSHA's On-site Consultation Program

Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP). Consultation: An OSHA Cooperative Program

Utah-based Western Metals Recycling LLC implemented improvements to its safety and health program at its facilities in Salt Lake City, Provo, and Plymouth following a free OSHA on-site consultation that identified electrical, housekeeping, and machine guarding hazards. The company initiated an "Eye-On-Safety" program as a way to quickly change and maintain a new culture that would put workplace safety and health first. Other programs included the Traffic Control Plan, Employee 4-Hour Safety School, and New Employee Safety Mentor Program. The company also created comprehensive written safety policies that call for frequent inspections by supervisors and safety managers. All three sites participate in OSHA's Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program, which recognizes small business employers who operate an exemplary safety and health program. For more information, see Western Metals Recycling's success story.




New publication provides steps for preventing worker injuries during disaster response

Rescue workers looking through debris

Responding to natural and man-made disasters puts emergency response workers at risk of injury or death from slips, trips and falls. A new OSHA QuickCard explains what employers must do to keep workers safe. This includes: assessing the worksite for hazards; providing protective equipment such as head protection, gloves, and slip-resistant footwear; and training workers to identify hazards.

 

 




Electricity and Tree Care Work: A Deadly Combination

 

Pamphlet offers safety guidance on the deadly combination of tree care work and electricity
Contact with electricity is one of the leading causes of death for tree care workers. A new OSHA pamphlet intended for small business owners and front-line supervisors offers measures to ensure that workers know and are prepared for the risks of tree-trimming operations near sources of electricity. These include training workers about potential hazards, making sure workers maintain a distance of at least 10 feet from overhead power lines, and providing proper gloves and shoes for hazards present where tree work is being performed. The pamphlet is also available in Spanish.



Product Safety Recalls
http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Recalls/

U.S. Department of the Interior
Occupational Health and Safety Program - SafetyNet
1849 C Street, N.W., MS 5558-MIB • Washington, D.C. 20240
(202) 513-0767
Last Updated on 9/07/18