February 1, 2008 · Volume 7, Issue 3
A twice monthly e-news memo with information, updates, and results from OSHA about safety and health in America's workplaces.
Archive Notice - OSHA Archive
NOTICE: This is an OSHA Archive Document, and may no longer represent OSHA Policy. It is presented here as historical content, for research and review purposes only.


In This Issue
Reminder to Employers: Posting of Injury/Illness Summaries Begins Today
OSHA Records Another Successful Enforcement Year in FY 2007
Small Business Assistance Web Page Receives a New Look, New Link and Updated eTool
Two New Whistleblower Fact Sheets Available
Comment Period Extended for Lookback Review of Methylene Chloride Standard
OSHA Extends Comment Period on the Confined Spaces in Construction NPRM
Tips Offered on Protecting Employees During Cold Weather
OSHA Takes Its Exhibit on the Road to Orlando, Fla.
Alliance Program Update
“QuickTips” from QuickTakes

Reminder to Employers: Posting Injury/Illness Summaries Begins Today
    Beginning today, employers must post a summary of the total number of job-related injuries and illnesses that occurred last year. Employers are only required to post the Summary (OSHA Form 300A) -- not the OSHA 300 Log -- from Feb. 1 to April 30, 2008. Copies of OSHA Forms 300, 300A and 301 are available on the OSHA Recordkeeping Web page.

OSHA Records Another Successful Enforcement Year in FY 2007
    OSHA recently released its annual enforcement statistics, validating that the agency's enforcement programs are generating positive results for the benefit of America's working men and women. In fiscal year (FY) 2007, OSHA conducted a total of 39,324 inspections, 4.3 percent more than its stated goal. The agency cited 67,176 serious violations, and repeat violation citations rose from 2,551 in FY 2006 to 2,714 in FY 2007. Fatality, injury and illness rates continued to decline to record lows. Injury and illness incidence rates were 4.4 per 100 employees in calendar year 2006, and workplace fatality rates were at an all-time low of 3.9 fatalities per 100,000 employees.

Small Business Assistance Web Page Receives a New Look, New Link and Updated eTool
    The redesigned Small Business Assistance Web Page now features categorical tabs for easier navigation and access to data. The new format highlights focal points, new products and links. The page introduces a link which provides small businesses with Spanish-language safety cards, booklets and posters. Additionally, the updated “Safety Pays” eTool allows employers to estimate the costs of work-related injuries and illnesses and the estimated impact on a company's bottom line. It also computes the projected sales growth that would be needed to cover the costs associated with those injuries and illnesses.

Two New Whistleblower Fact Sheets Available
    Employees in the environmental and aviation industries will benefit from two new OSHA Whistleblower Protection fact sheets. Individuals who report violations of environmental laws related to asbestos; air emissions; hazardous and solid waste cleanup and disposal; discharges of pollutants in U.S. waters; and control of toxic chemicals are protected from employer retaliation. Air carrier employees, contractors and subcontractors are also protected from retaliation for reporting violations of federal laws associated with aviation safety. Visit OSHA's Whistleblower Protection Program Web page or OSHA's Publications page to download these and other whistleblower publications.

Comment Period Extended for Lookback Review of Methylene Chloride Standard
    OSHA extended the comment period for the Lookback Review of the Methylene Chloride Standard. The agency invites suggestions from the public on how the Standard's requirements can be modified to reduce the burden on employers while maintaining employee protection. Methylene chloride is used in metal degreasing and aircraft paint removal, as well as in some plastics, adhesives, and inks. Comments will be accepted until March 10, 2008.

OSHA Extends Comment Period on the Confined Spaces in Construction NPRM
    The comment period on the Confined Spaces in Construction Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) has been extended to Feb. 28, 2008. The proposed rule addresses topics specific to the construction industry. Using a systematic approach to confined space safety, the rule explains how to assess the hazards, classify the space, and implement effective procedures to protect employees. In addition, the rule requires controlling contractors (with overall authority of the site) to coordinate confined space operations among a site's multiple employers.

Tips Offered on Protecting Employees During Cold Weather
    Winter is upon us, and some areas of the nation have already experienced its severe consequences. For those employees who work outside – such as in construction, commercial fishing, maritime and agriculture – OSHA offers tips to protect against cold weather-related illnesses and injuries. Printed copies of OSHA's Cold Stress QuickCard™ (English/Spanish) are available for free by contacting OSHA's publications office at 202-693-1888. Visit OSHA's Web site at www.osha.gov for more information.

OSHA Takes Its Exhibit on the Road to Orlando, Fla.
    OSHA will host an exhibit with compliance assistance and other informative materials for attendees at the National Association of Tower Erectors Annual Conference and Exposition in Orlando, Fla., Feb. 11-13. This event features in-depth discussions, educational presentations, and networking opportunities for those in the broadcast and telecommunications tower construction, maintenance and service industry. OSHA will also showcase its exhibit at the International Builders' Show in Orlando, Feb. 13-16. This forum offers courses, educational sessions, and interactive discussions to employers and employees in the home building industry.

Alliance Program Update
    National Office: Process safety and the management of chemical reactivity hazards are the goals of the new OSHA and Process Safety Alliance. Participants will work cooperatively to provide members, small businesses and the public with process safety information, guidance and training resources. Region V: A new safety and health alliance was established between OSHA and Wisconsin Ready Mix Concrete Association to develop stronger training programs on preventing injuries and other worksite hazards.

“QuickTips” from QuickTakes
    On every employer's list of priorities throughout the year should be a promise to ensure that at the end of every workday all employees return home safe to their loved ones. For employers, family members, friends and neighbors who are looking for perfect Valentine's Day gifts that protect a special someone, OSHA suggests:
  • For anyone who works in construction or machining: many companies now manufacture impact-resistant safety glasses which come in a variety of contemporary colors and styles.
  • For service personnel, delivery drivers and others whose jobs require them to spend a lot of time behind the wheel of a vehicle, consider the gift of a lumbar support pillow, a GPS unit, a first-aid kit, or an emergency breakdown road kit (with flares, battery-free hand-cranked-powered flashlight and radio, jumper cables, and a reflective safety vest) – and perhaps include a thoughtful greeting card with the message “Stay safe and come home soon.”
  • Consider a personal protective equipment package with dust masks, cut-resistant safety gloves, steel-toed shoes, and hearing protection such as earplugs.
  • For people stocking shelves: back supports, knee pads, wrist braces, and comfortable, supportive, slip-resistant shoes.
  • For loved ones in retail or other work environments that have frequent customer contact: Tie a bow around a pocket-sized bottle of hand sanitizing liquid.

  •     OSHA offers many resources that employers can use to help employees stay safe and healthy at work and prevent workplace injuries and illnesses. Some of them are the agency's new easy-search Publications page, our numerous Safety and Health Topics Web pages featuring information on specific workplace hazards and individual industries, and much, much more. Visit OSHA's Web site at www.osha.gov for all the latest news and updates. Turn to your next issue of QuickTakes for tips on another safety and health topic.

    Editors: Elaine Fraser & Kimberly Tucker, OSHA Office of Communications, 202-693-1999