|May 15, 2018 · Volume 17, Issue 10||
|A twice monthly newsletter with information about workplace safety and health.|
On May 4, OSHA issued a direct final rule clarifying aspects of the beryllium standard for general industry as it applies to processes, operations, and areas where workers may be exposed to materials containing less than 0.1% beryllium by weight. The direct final rule will go into effect on July 4 unless OSHA receives significant adverse comments by June 4. For details, see the news release.
OSHA also announced that it will begin enforcing certain requirements of the beryllium final rule, including the permissible exposure limits in the general industry, construction, and shipyard standards; and the exposure assessment, respiratory protection, medical surveillance, and medical removal provisions in the general industry standard.
The agency will delay enforcement of other ancillary provisions for general industry until June 25, 2018. The Agency plans to issue a proposal to further extend this compliance date for the ancillary provisions to Dec. 12, 2018.
The fifth annual National Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction held events across the country and internationally from May 7 to 11. Deputy Secretary of Labor Patrick Pizzella kicked-off the week in Washington, D.C. at the newly constructed DC United soccer stadium.
Thousands of employers held stand-downs during this weeklong event, emphasizing to hundreds of thousands of workers the importance of preventing dangerous on-the-job falls every day.
OSHA will hold a meeting June 12 in Washington, D.C., to solicit comments and suggestions from stakeholders in the railroad and trucking industries on whistleblower issues under the agency’s jurisdiction. The meeting is the first in a series requesting public input on OSHA’s whistleblower program. Individuals interested in participating or attending the meeting, either in-person or via telephone, must register by May 29. For more information, read the news release.
U-Haul Moving & Storage at Larkin District was cited for exposing workers to silica and asbestos hazards by failing to provide training, respiratory protection, protective clothing, properly dispose of asbestos-containing materials, and have a competent person oversee renovation work. OSHA proposed penalties totaling $108,095. Read the news release for more information.
Oldcastle Lawn & Garden Inc. was cited for exposing workers to amputation, struck-by, caught-in, electrical, fall, fire, and noise hazards. OSHA proposed penalties of $251,108. For more information, read the news release.
Premier Behavioral Health Solutions of Florida Inc. and UHS of Delaware Inc. were cited for failing to protect employees at their Bradenton, Fla., facility from workplace violence. In 2016, OSHA cited another UHS subsidiary for having a deficient workplace violence prevention program. OSHA proposed penalties of $71,137. Read the news release for more information.
OSHA cited Desouza Framing Inc. for exposing employees to dangerous falls at two northwest Florida worksites. In October 2017, inspectors observed without fall protection. Two months later inspectors saw employees at another jobsite without fall protection, resulting in two willful citations. The Jacksonville-based residential framing contractor faces penalties of $199,178. For details, see the news release.
Tennessee OSHA issued 12 citations and $57,750 in penalties to Vorteq Coil Finishers LLC in Jackson after an unguarded pinch point resulted in the amputation of a worker’s fingers. Inspectors found that the employer failed to provide machine guarding, train workers on the control of hazardous energy and confined space hazards, and inspect cranes.
California OSHA issued 11 citations and $86,615 in penalties to UMC Acquisition Corp. in Downey after unguarded moving belts and pulleys resulted in the amputation of a worker’s fingers. Inspectors concluded that the company failed to assess the workplace for hazards, ensure that proper lockout/tagout procedures were implemented, and install guards on moving machinery.
Georgia-based Jasper Contractors Inc. agreed to pay $48,000 in back wages and compensatory damages to a former safety director who had cooperated with an OSHA compliance investigation. Under the settlement, the company is forbidden from future retaliation and will expunge the disciplinary actions from the employee’s personnel file. OSHA will train the company’s employees on whistleblower protections under the OSH Act. For more information, read the news release.
Suterra LLC, a provider of pest control products contacted Oregon OSHA’s On-Site Consultation Program to help improve its safety and health program. Consultants advised the company on chemical exposure monitoring, safe pesticide application practices, and all-terrain vehicle safety. As a result, the company lowered its rate of serious injuries to nearly 60 percent below the industry average, and gained acceptance into the Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program. For more information, read Suterra’s success story.
OSHA's Strategic Partnership Program provides opportunities for OSHA to partner with employers, workers, professional or trade associations, labor organizations, and other interested stakeholders. Strategic Partnerships are designed to eliminate serious hazards and enhance workplace safety and health practices in major corporations, government agencies, private sector industries, and at large construction projects.
OSHA offers several resources to help employers increase worker participation in their safety and health efforts:
For more information, visit the Safe + Sound Campaign webpage.
Shipyard work has traditionally had an injury rate more than twice that of construction and general industry. OSHA has many resources that address hazards within the maritime industry, including an online Shipyard Employment tool and a series of 16 videos that examines shipyard fatalities and shows how similar incidents can be prevented.
Follow @OSHA_DOL on Twitter (and thanks for retweeting!) and visit the DOL Facebook page for OSHA information and resources. OSHA also provides news and commentary on workplace safety and health from its senior leadership, staff, and guest contributors on the DOL blog.
See DOL's weekly electronic newsletter for more DOL news.
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