April 1, 2009 · Volume 8, Issue 7
QuickTakes QuickTakes
A twice monthly e-news product with information about workplace safety and health.

In This Issue

Labor Secretary acts swiftly to avoid workers' exposure to diacetyl
Stimulus package tops agenda for construction advisory committee meeting
New publication discusses mandatory respirator selection provisions added to existing Respiratory Protection Standard
Latest regional emphasis program targets primary metal products industries
OTI education center offers maritime industry train-the-trainer course
Grantee offers training on Process Safety Management Standard
OSHA and education center alliance promotes programs and training on reducing workplace hazards
VPP Corporate participant shows effectiveness of program on improving job safety and health
Strategic partnership helps drive down injury and illness rates in construction industry
"QuickTips:" April is Alcohol Awareness Month

Labor Secretary acts swiftly to avoid workers' exposure to diacetyl

Secretary Hilda L. Solis withdrew an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for occupational exposure to food flavorings containing diacetyl for OSHA's timely development of a standard to protect workers from bronchiolitis obliterans, a serious and potentially fatal lung disease associated with such an exposure.

Stimulus package tops agenda for construction advisory committee meeting

The Advisory Committee on Construction Safety and Health will hold an open meeting at the U.S. Department of Labor in Washington, April 14-17. Members will discuss the anticipated effect of the federal economic stimulus package on the construction industry, as well as issues regarding Women in Construction and Silica. Details are in the March 27 Federal Register.

New publication discusses mandatory respirator selection provisions added to existing Respiratory Protection Standard

Assigned Protection Factors, a new guidance document, provides employers with information for selecting respirators for employees exposed to contaminants in the air. A limited number of copies are available for ordering from OSHA's publications page or by calling 202-693-1888.

Latest regional emphasis program targets primary metal products industries

A new Regional Emphasis Program is underway in OSHA's Region I to help minimize employee exposure to hazards associated with the smelting and refining of ferrous and nonferrous metals. The goal of this REP is to help reduce the overall rate of workplace injuries, illnesses and fatalities through outreach activities and targeted inspections.

OTI Education Center offers maritime industry train-the-trainer course

The University of South Florida OSHA Training Institute Education Center is offering OSHA's #5400 - Trainer Course in OSHA Standards for the Maritime Industry April 13-16, 2009, in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. This course prepares students to become OSHA Outreach Program trainers and conduct 10- and 30-hour maritime classes in shipyard employment, marine terminals and longshoring. More information is available on USF OTI Education Center's Web site, or by calling 800-852-5362.

Grantee offers training on Process Safety Management Standard

The New Jersey Work Environment Council, an OSHA Susan Harwood Training Grant Program recipient, is offering a workshop April 21 from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on OSHA's Process Safety Management Standard at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, N.J. Private or public sector facility employers and employees in New Jersey covered by the Occupational Safety and Health Act and the standard are eligible to participate. For more information, visit WEC's Web site.

OSHA and education center alliance promotes programs and training on reducing workplace hazards

OSHA's Region I established an alliance with Keene State College OSHA Training Institute Education Center in Manchester, N.H., that will provide Region I employers and employees with information about OSHA's cooperative programs and training to help reduce workplace hazards. A "Meet and Greet" on Voluntary Protection Programs is slated for April 29 from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at General Electric in Bangor, Maine.

VPP Corporate participant shows effectiveness of program on improving job safety and health

General Electric, one of eight participants in the Voluntary Protection Programs Corporate Pilot, has more than 100 VPP-recognized facilities under federal and State Plan State jurisdictions. GE's 2008 annual evaluation demonstrated that its VPP facilities had an average total recordable case incidence rate and an average days away from work, job transfer or restriction rate 22 and 61 percent, respectively, below GE's non-VPP facilities.

Strategic partnership helps drive down injury and illness rates in construction industry

The Associated Builders and Contractors of Wisconsin formed an OSHA Strategic Partnership to raise occupational safety and health awareness in the construction industry. During the partnership's first year, the average days away from work, job transfer or restriction rate was 75 percent below the 2007 Bureau of Labor Statistics' national average. More than 5,000 employees, managers and supervisors received safety and health training which led to the abatement of potential job hazards and 100 percent compliance with OSHA standards.

"QuickTips:" April is Alcohol Awareness Month

In recognition of Alcohol Awareness Month, OSHA is reminding employers to develop and implement a drug- and alcohol-free workplace program. The agency works closely with the Labor Department's Working Partners for an Alcohol- and Drug-Free Workplace program to raise awareness about the effect drugs and alcohol have on the workplace. Working Partners has collaborated with OSHA to develop a Safety and Health Topics Web Page addressing substance abuse. For more information, visit OSHA's Web site.

Turn to your next issue of QuickTakes for tips on another occupational safety and health topic.

Editor: Elaine Fraser, OSHA Office of Communications, 202-693-1999, www.osha.gov