December 19, 2018 • Volume 17, Issue 24 • A twice monthly newsletter with information about workplace safety and health.
OSHA Proposes Revised Beryllium Standard for General Industry
OSHA issued a proposed rule on Dec. 10 to revise the beryllium standard for general industry. The proposed changes are designed to clarify the safety standard and improve compliance. The proposed rule would amend selected paragraphs of the standard, and also replace Appendix A, Operations for Establishing Beryllium Work Areas. Comments on the proposed rule must be submitted by Feb. 9, 2019. For more information, read the news release.
Be Prepared to Protect Workers from Winter Weather-Related Hazards
As outdoor temperatures drop and winter storms approach, employers should take measures to keep their workers safe. OSHA's Winter Weather webpage provides information on protecting workers from hazards while working outside during severe cold and snow storms. This guidance includes information on staying safe while clearing snow from walkways and rooftops.
Georgia Auto Parts Distributor Cited for Fire, Struck-By, and Other Hazards
OSHA cited wholesale auto and truck parts distributor Parts Authority Georgia, LLC, for exposing workers to smoke and fire hazards. Inspectors determined that the company allowed obstructed exits; exposed workers to struck-by hazards from damaged storage rack supports and shelves; and failed to provide training on recognizing chemical hazards. The company faces $133,406 in penalties. For more information, read the news release.
Florida Property Maintenance Company Cited After Worker Suffers Burn Injuries
L.A. Disaster Relief and Property Maintenance, LLC, was cited and fined $94,415 for failing to implement a hazard communication program after a worker sustained burn injuries. Inspectors determined that the owner directed a worker to ignite wood and debris inside an air burn box using a torch and gasoline, which caused an explosion. Read the news release for more information.
South Florida Printer Fined for Exposing Workers to Amputation, Electrical, and Other Hazards
Nupress of Miami, Inc., faces $71,139 in penalties for failing to provide machine guarding, establish a lockout/tagout program, implement a written hazard communication program, and properly store flammable liquids. Nupress was also cited for failing to secure a safety platform to the lifting carriage and/or forks on a forklift. Read the news release for more information.
California Fines Company after Worker Suffers Serious Electric Shock
California OSHA issued six citations and $95,435 in penalties to Southern California Edison after a worker attempting to remove an old ground wire contacted an energized transformer and suffered serious injuries. Inspectors determined that the company failed to control hazardous energy, isolate exposed underground cables with protective coverings, and eliminate all possible sources of backfeeding energy.
Hawaii Cites Hotel for Exposing Workers to Asbestos Hazards
The Hawaii Occupational Safety and Health Division issued eight citations and $66,013 in penalties to Hyatt Corporation after determining that workers performing maintenance and demolition activities on a hotel were not informed about asbestos handling, personal protective equipment, and good work practices. The employer was cited for failing to conduct periodic safety inspections, and failing to train workers on asbestos hazards and proper use of respirators.
SAFETY AND HEALTH OUTREACH
OSHA Launches Initiative in Southeastern States to Increase Awareness of Trenching Hazards and Solutions
Working in trenches and excavations can be hazardous, and trench collapses pose a great risk to workers. In October, OSHA updated its National Emphasis Program on Trenching and Excavation to continue support for compliance assistance and inspection programs to improve the safety of trenching and excavation operations. As part of the agency's focus on trenching safety, OSHA area offices in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and Mississippi have launched an initiative to educate employers and workers on trenching safety practices. For more information, read the news release.
OSHA Promotes Young Worker Safety at Pennsylvania Vocational Conference
OSHA representatives addressed a recent conference in Pennsylvania attended by more than 100 school-to-career coordinators, counselors, school administrators, teachers and state Department of Education staff. Subjects included OSHA's Alliances with both the Lehigh Career and Technical Instituteand the Upper Bucks County Technical School. OSHA provides workplace safety guidance to both schools, and conducts outreach activities for students preparing for careers in welding, healthcare, construction, carpentry, and plumbing.
Alaska On-Site Consultation Helps Community Food Bank Reduce Injuries
A successful collaboration between the Fairbanks Community Food Bank and Alaska's On-Site Consultation Program has made the food bank a safer place to work. The consultation program connected the food bank and helped identify and correct hazards. A training program was developed to ensure that all forklift operators learned and implemented consistent safety practices. An incentive system was also created to reward workers for recognizing and reporting safety issues. After reducing its recordable and serious injury rate to zero from 2015-2017, the food bank was accepted into OSHA's Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program, which recognizes small business employers who have used OSHA's On-Site Consultation Program services and operate an exemplary safety and health programs. For more information, read the success story.
OSHA Alliance Partners Commit to Improving Worker Safety and Health
- Lamar Outdoor Advertising Company renewed a five-year alliance to help protect the safety and health of workers in Connecticut and western Massachusetts. The alliance will focus on fall protection, personal protective equipment, safe use of ladders, electrical safety, control of hazardous energy, and protection against bloodborne pathogens.
- The Associated Builders and Contractors-Delaware Chapter renewed a five-year agreement to provide educational and training resources to help improve the safety of construction workers.
- T&T Staff Management renewed a three-year agreement to provide information and training resources that will help protect workers from construction and general industry safety hazards.
- The El Paso Association of Contractors signed a two-year agreement to help protect workers from exposure to falls, electrocution, struck-by, and caught-in or caught-between hazards; and by educating them on workers' rights and employers' responsibilities.
- The Chicagoland WERCouncil signed a two-year agreement to provide information and training resources that will help protect workers from exposure to hazards associated with the warehousing and distribution industry.
- The Chicagoland Associated General Contractors signed a two-year agreement to help protect workers from exposure to electrical, fall, struck-by, caught-in-between, silica, and ergonomic hazards in construction.