May 15, 2005 · Volume 4, Issue 10
A bi-weekly e-news memo with information, updates, and results from OSHA about safety and health in America's workplaces.
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NOTICE: This is an OSHA Archive Document, and may no longer represent OSHA Policy. It is presented here as historical content, for research and review purposes only.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
OSHA Unveils New Disaster Site Worker Outreach Training Program
Oregon Receives Final Approval for its State Program
Landscape and Horticultural Services Newest Safety and Health Topics Page
Comment Period Opened on Occupational Exposure to Ionizing Radiation
OSHA Marks 30th Anniversary of On-Site Consultation with Inaugural Award
Safety and Health Seminars Scheduled in Ohio
OSHA's Augusta, ME, Area Office Honored for Achievements in Work Zone Safety
Spotlight on VPP Worksite in Iowa, New York Region Partnerships
New Publications Highlight Trenching, Fireworks Safety
Regional Alliances Formed in Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Dallas
Voluntary Protection Programs Activity


OSHA Unveils New Disaster Site Worker Outreach Training Program
     The National Response Plan Roll-Out Conference in Chicago on May 10 provided OSHA the opportunity to announce a new training program designed to train skilled workers during emergency response and recovery operations. Co-sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security's Office for Domestic Preparedness, the program was developed as a result of lessons learned following the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. The program includes a 16-hour Disaster Site Worker Course, a 10-hour Construction Outreach Training Course and a 40-hour Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HAZWOPER) course that provides the minimum level of training for workers engaged in hazardous substance removal.

Oregon Receives Final Approval for its State Program
    During ceremonies in Portland, OR, May 12, Acting Assistant Secretary of Labor for OSHA Jonathan L. Snare presented Oregon's Governor Ted Kulongoski a certificate of final approval designating Oregon as the 17th state to receive final approval to operate its own occupational safety and health plan. Oregon has operated an approved state plan since 1972; final approval means that federal OSHA standards and enforcement authority no longer apply (Federal OSHA will retain jurisdiction for temporary labor camps). Twenty-six states and territories operate OSHA-approved state programs. Final approval for any state program marks the last step in a lengthy developmental process that includes approval for a developmental plan, devising structural elements for the program, certification (Oregon was certified in 1982), meeting certain compliance staffing requirements and successfully implementing its program that is "at least as effective" as the federal program.

Landscape and Horticultural Services Newest Safety and Health Topics Page
    An Alliance between OSHA and the Professional Landcare Network (formerly the Associated Landscape Contractors of America) has helped produce a new Safety and Health Topics page on OSHA's website for workers and employers in the landscape and horticultural services industry. Information available includes ways to develop and implement comprehensive safety and health programs, employer and employee resources for Spanish-speaking workers and youth workers, and links to other websites that identify common industry hazards and solutions.

Comment Period Opened on Occupational Exposure to Ionizing Radiation
   OSHA is asking for public comments and requesting information to help determine if and how the agency's standards for occupational exposure to ionizing radiation should be updated. Ionizing radiation sources are found in many occupational settings, including health care, research institutions, nuclear reactors and their support facilities, and some manufacturing settings. Health risks are possible from these radiation sources. Comments must be submitted to OSHA by Aug. 2, 2005. A May 3 Federal Register notice has details on the issue and also provides procedures to submit comments.

OSHA Marks 30th Anniversary of On-Site Consultation with Inaugural Award
   Westminster, CO provided the setting May 4 to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the agency's On-Site Consultation Service. OSHA's Acting Assistant Secretary Jonathan L. Snare, along with the agency's Chief of Staff, Kim Lazor, spoke on the significance of OSHA's Consultation Program, a free service primarily geared to small businesses to help improve their safety performance. This year's conference also marked the first presentation of the William J. Higgins award to annually recognize a state employee from the consultation program for their sustained level of excellence in servicing the small business community. Dr. William H. Weems, consultation program manager for Alabama, was the inaugural winner of the award named for the program's first national office director. Consultation Services are available in every state, and Washington, DC, the Virgin Islands, Guam, the Northern Marianas, and Puerto Rico.

Safety and Health Seminars Scheduled in Ohio
    Protecting workers in personal health care facilities and reducing injury compensation costs are the goals of seminars being offered by two of OSHA's Ohio area offices this month. The Columbus office is holding a half-day seminar, May 18 in Wellston, OH at the Jenkins Memorial Nursing Home Center, while the Toledo office has scheduled its training for May 24 at the UAW/Ford/Rhodes State Training Center in Lima, OH. Both seminars will focus on bloodborne pathogens, ergonomic hazards, workplace violence, hazard communication, lockout/tagout requirements, and recordkeeping. For details, contact the Columbus office at (614) 469-5582 or the Toledo office at (419) 259-6355.

OSHA's Augusta, ME, Area Office Honored for Achievements in Work Zone Safety
   The Northeast Transportation Safety Coalition recently recognized OSHA's Augusta, ME, Area Office for their efforts to promote and enhance highway work zone safety. The office received the 2005 E-Award during a ceremony Apr. 21 at the Coalition's conference in South Portland, ME. The award is presented annually for achievements in transportation engineering, education, enforcement and emergency services. The Augusta office was recognized for its work with the Maine Work Zone Alliance, a cooperative effort with the Associated Constructors of Maine, Maine's Departments of Labor and Transportation, and the Federal Highway Administration. Maine's Transportation Safety Coalition hosted this year's conference. The Augusta Area Office currently has seven active alliances covering a wide range of industries and occupational hazard exposures throughout the state.

Spotlight on VPP Worksite in Iowa, New York Region Partnerships
   A national monument in Iowa was recently recognized by OSHA's Kansas City Region as an example of "outstanding safety and health management." Effigy Mounds National Monument in Harpers Ferry, IA, was designated a VPP "Star" site in ceremonies May 4. Known for its prehistoric earthen mounds, many in the shape of birds, mammals and reptiles, Effigy Mounds employs 33 maintenance and tour workers. Meanwhile, OSHA's New York Region signed two site-safety partnerships earlier this month with Plaza Construction Company focusing on worker safety and health during construction projects in Manhattan and Queens. The agreements mark the first time the New York Region simultaneously signed two partnerships with the same contracting company for two different worksites. The New York Region added another first May 12 when they formed OSHA's first safety and health partnership on St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands. The agreement joins OSHA with Manhattan Construction Bahamas Limited (MCBL) throughout the construction of the 169,000 square-foot Yacht Haven project, a combination of retail business, office lease area, and residential condominiums.

New Publications Highlight Trenching, Fireworks Safety
    OSHA recently added two new items to its ongoing series of publications on various safety and health topics. The new additions include a Trench Safety Poster (also in Spanish) that provides quick tips to ensure employees are working in protected trenches, and Fireworks Quick Cards for retail fireworks sales and for display operators. Both highlight safety tips for the pyrotechnic industry and were developed as a product of OSHA's Alliance with the American Pyrotechnics Association.

Regional Alliances Formed in Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Dallas
     General warehousing and retail workers, Hispanic employees, youth and construction workers are the focus of Alliances signed by OSHA area offices recently. Marden's Inc., a Maine retail chain employing approximately 900 workers, signed on with the Maine area office and Maine's Safety Works! consultation program to focus on reducing ergonomics, and general warehousing and retail safety and health hazards. OSHA's Tarrytown, NY, Area Office signed two Alliances this month: an agreement with Alfred E. Smith (AES) Career and Technical Education High School in the Bronx that will add professional safety and health resources to AES' career preparation services; and with the Westchester (NY) Hispanic Coalition to develop Spanish-language training and education programs on safety in general industry and construction. Pennsylvania-based Keystone Contractors Association (KCA) signed on with OSHA's Harrisburg, PA, Area Office last month to promote workplace safety and health for construction workers throughout the state. Finally, OSHA's Lubbock, TX, Area Office has aligned with the David L. Carrasco Job Corps Center in El Paso to educate students and instructors on workplace safety and health. The Center works with El Paso's young men and women from 16-24 with a training approach that integrates academic, vocational, and social competencies through classroom, practical and work-based learning experiences.

Voluntary Protection Programs Activity
    The following companies were approved recently for new or continued participation in OSHA's Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP): Region I: International Paper, Putnam Plant, Putnam, CT (Cont. Star); Bangor Hydro Electric Co., Bangor, ME (New Merit); Wheelabrator Bridgeport, LP, Bridgeport, CT (New Star); Henkel Corp., Seabrook, NH (Cond. Star); Environmental Chemical Corp., MA Military Reservation, Otis Air National Guard Base, MA (New Star); Calpine Tiverton Power, Tiverton, RI (New Star) Region II: Gusmer Corp., Lakewood, NJ (New Merit); Presbyterian Home for Central New York, New Hartford, NY (New Merit); Tropicana Products, Jersey City, NJ (Cont. Star); L'Oreal USA, Clark, New Jersey (Cont. Star) Region III: Ciba Specialty Chemicals, Newport Site, Newport, DE (Cont. Star); Rohm & Haas, Bristol, PA (Cond. Star) Region V: Jacobs Constructors, Inc., Lima, OH (New Star) Region VI: Lubrizol Corp., Bayport Plant, Pasadena, TX (New Star); Austin Industrial at Lubrizol Bayport Plant, Pasadena, TX (New Star); Grace Davison, Lake Charles, LA (New Star); International Paper, Springhill Converting Plant, Springhill, LA (New Star); Louisiana Pigments Co., LP, Westlake, LA (New Star); Entergy Operations Labadieville Service Center, Labadieville, LA (New Star); Texas Genco Holding, Inc., Sam Bertron Plant, Houston, TX (New Star); Equistar Chemicals at Bayport Plant, Pasadena, TX (Cont. Star); AMECO, Borger, TX (New Star); Lyondell Chemical Co., Channelview, TX (New Star); Equistar Chemicals, Channelview, TX (Cont. Star); Koch Carbon-Flint Hills Resources, LP, Corpus Christi, TX (New Star); JE Merit @ Ciba Specialty, St. Gabriel, LA (Cont. Star); Chevron Phillips Chemical, St. James, LA (Cont. Star); Shaw Maintenance @ Syngenta Crop Protection, St. Gabriel, LA (Cont. Star); Syngenta Crop Protection, St. Gabriel, LA (Cont. Star); Austin Industrial Inc., at Lyondell Chemicals, Houston, TX (New Star); Drilling Specialties Company, Alamo Plant (Merit to Star) Region VII: Woodpro Cabinetry, Inc., Cabool, MO (Cond. Star), and Region VIII: 3M, Brookings, SD (New Star).

Editor: Bill Wright, OSHA Office of Communications, 202-693-1999