|May 1, 2009 · Volume 8, Issue 9|
|A twice monthly e-news product with information about workplace safety and health.|
In This IssueOSHA responds to threat of H1N1 (swine) virus
Grantees offer free training on safety and health management systems and pandemic flu
Secretary Solis commemorates Workers Memorial Day April 28
Workplaces with high injury and illness rates notified by OSHA
Maritime committee will discuss marine terminal safety issues at May meeting
Sandbag preparation is focus of new information posted to floods and tornadoes Web page
OSHA hosts kickoff of North American Occupational Safety and Health Week
OSHA to share information during Public Service Recognition Week and DOI's Safety Day
"QuickTips:" May is Electrical Safety Month
To prepare businesses and workers for the possibility that the H1N1 (swine) virus may become pandemic, OSHA has a Web page to answer questions pertaining to workplace health and safety. Additionally, OSHA plans to publish new QuickCards and fact sheets in the coming days and provide these topical at-a-glance publications to the U.S. workforce. For H1N1 information, visit OSHA's Pandemic Influenza Safety and Health Topics page.
Goodwill Industries International, an OSHA Susan Harwood Training Grant Program recipient, is offering free, online and in-person training to help organizations design a safety and health management system. Visit Goodwill's Web site for course details. Harwood grantee Southern California Education and Research Center at UCLA and UC Irvine will host a free, 1-hour Webinar May 11 at 10 a.m. PDT on pandemic flu and its effect on business. For more information and to register, visit the Center's Web site or call 310-206-2304. Employers and workers covered by the Occupational Safety and Health Act are eligible to participate in these events.
During a groundbreaking ceremony for a workers memorial monument at the National Labor College in Silver Spring, Md., U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis paid tribute to men and women who died on the job. Solis said OSHA will direct funds from the economic stimulus toward enhanced and targeted enforcement; compliance assistance, guidance, training and outreach; and construction data collection. Since 1989, Workers Memorial Day has been observed on April 28-the day in 1971 when OSHA was established-as a day of remembrance for workers who died or who have been injured on the job.
Approximately 13,500 employers received a letter last month from OSHA alerting them that their injury and illness rates are above the national average, and that the agency offers free assistance to help employers better protect the safety and health of their employees. The notifications were based on data reported by approximately 80,000 worksites surveyed by OSHA last year (the survey collected injury and illness data from calendar year 2007).
The Maritime Advisory Committee for Occupational Safety and Health will meet May 19-20, 2009, in Anchorage, Alaska, to discuss commercial fishing hazards, speed limits and safety zones in marine terminals, among other issues. More information appears in the April 27 Federal Register.
Employers and workers involved in emergency preparedness could benefit from resources posted to OSHA's floods and tornadoes Web page on sandbag preparation and safety. Visit OSHA's Web site for more information on how to help keep disaster site workers safe and healthy on the job.
OSHA hosted the May 4 kickoff of North American Occupational Safety and Health Week (May 3-9) in Washington, D.C. This year's theme is "Safety Means Always Coming Home." NAOSH Week is a joint venture among the United States, Canada and Mexico to raise awareness about the importance of workplace safety and health. To learn more, visit the NAOSH Week Web page.
On May 7-9, OSHA will join other federal, state and local government agencies in an exposition on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., for Public Service Recognition Week. OSHA will showcase an exhibit and distribute compliance assistance and other informative materials to attendees at the U.S. Department of the Interior's Safety Day observance May 19 in Washington.
In recognition of Electrical Safety Month, OSHA is reminding employers and workers about the importance of staying safe when working with electricity on the job. OSHA's Safety and Health Topics page on electricity features information about standards, hazards and possible solutions to those hazards. The page on the Control of Hazardous Energy (Lockout/Tagout) describes why this practice is important to protect workers from the unexpected startup of machinery, or the release of hazardous energy during service or maintenance activities. Visit OSHA's publications page to find more resources on electrical safety.
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