Safe Use of Extension Cords

First published by Safety+Health an NSC publication

Extension cords can be found in many types of workplaces, from offices and warehouses to retail stores and construction jobsites.

Unfortunately, they’re often commonly misused. Let’s go over some do’s and don’ts of extension cord safety from the Texas Department of Insurance Division of Workers’ Compensation.

Do:

  • Inspect an extension cord for physical damage before use.
  • Check that the cord matches the wattage rating on the appliance or tool you’re using.
  • Make sure all cords have been approved by an independent testing laboratory such as UL.
  • Fully insert the extension cord into the outlet.
  • Keep cords away from water.
  • Use ground-fault circuit interrupter protection when using extension cords in wet or damp environments.
  • Unplug extension cords when not in use.
  • Consider installing overhead pendants to reduce trip hazards.

Don’t:

  • Use an indoor extension cord outdoors.
  • Overload cords with more than the proper electrical load.
  • Run extension cords through doorways, holes in ceilings, walls or floors.
  • Daisy chain, or connect, multiple power strips together.
  • Move, bend or modify any of the extension cord plug’s metal parts.
  • Force a plug into an outlet.
  • Drive over an extension cord.
  • Attach extension cords to the wall with nails or staples.

McCraren Compliance offers many opportunities in safety training to help circumvent accidents. Please take a moment to visit our calendar of classes to see what we can do to help your safety measures from training to consulting.

Truck driver/equipment operator crushed while loading backhoe onto trailer

First published by Safety+Health an NSC publication
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Report number: 71-219-2022
Issued by: Washington State Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation Program
Date of report: April 18, 2022

A 64-year-old truck driver and equipment operator working for a gravel-hauling and equipment-moving company drove his employer’s truck with an attached flatbed trailer to a jobsite. His task was to load a backhoe and transport it to another site. Although no one witnessed the incident, a backup warning alarm was sounding when first responders arrived, suggesting the driver was operating the backhoe in reverse. It’s possible the driver had started moving the backhoe up the trailer’s two metal ramps, then backed up to better position its wheels. As he was doing this, the wet, muddy tires may have slipped on the ramps, resulting in a rear wheel going off a ramp and causing the backhoe to roll over onto its side. The driver either attempted to jump from the operator’s seat or was thrown from it. He was crushed under the backhoe’s rollover protective structure and died. The backhoe had a seat belt that, if used, would have kept the driver in the seat and within the protective structure as the equipment rolled.

To help prevent similar occurrences, employers should:

  • Train equipment operators and ensure they always use a seat belt, including when loading and unloading onto a transport trailer.
  • Use a spotter to provide directions to the equipment operator during loading and unloading to ensure the operator positions equipment correctly for safe movement on and off the trailer.
  • Create a job hazard analysis for safely moving construction equipment.

McCraren Compliance offers many opportunities in safety training to help circumvent accidents. Please take a moment to visit our calendar of classes to see what we can do to help your safety measures from training to consulting.

National Forklift Safety Day

First published by Industrial Truck Association

This year we celebrate the 9th annual National Forklift Safety Day (NFSD) on June 14, 2022. We are excited to be able to host this year’s event in person and live online. All are welcome to attend in person or virtually. Whether you are a member of the ITA, work in the material handling industry, government or come from the end user community, we invite you to take part in NFSD 2022.

National Forklift Safety Day 2022
June 14, 2022
National Press Club
Washington, DC

Register Now!

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER TO ATTEND NFSD 2022 VIRTUALLY

Our speaker line-up this year includes:

  • Chuck Pascarelli, President, Americas, Hyster-Yale Group (Chairman, ITA Board of Directors)
  • Douglas Parker, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health (OSHA)
  • Jonathan Dawley, President & CEO, KION North America, (NFSD Chair 2022)
  • Lorne Weeter, Vice President of Sales, Mobile Automation, Dematic
  • Brian Duffy, Director of Corporate Environmental and Manufacturing Safety, Crown Equipment Corporation

McCraren Compliance offers many opportunities in safety training to help circumvent accidents. Please take a moment to visit our calendar of classes to see what we can do to help your safety measures from training to consulting.

June is National Safety Month

First published by Safety+Health an NSC publication

Every June, the National Safety Council celebrates National Safety Month – an observance intended to raise awareness about keeping each other safe, from the workplace to anyplace. Throughout the month, NSC will release free resources with the goal of helping you create and maintain a culture of safety at your workplace. The resources reflect weekly themes. They are:

  • Week 1: Musculoskeletal disorders
  • Week 2: Workplace impairment
  • Week 3: Injury prevention
  • Week 4: Slips, trips and falls

Watch for four special mini episodes of our “On the Safe Side” podcast also built around the weekly themes.

To learn more about National Safety Month, go to nsc.org/nsm.


McCraren Compliance offers many opportunities in safety training to help circumvent accidents. Please take a moment to visit our calendar of classes to see what we can do to help your safety measures from training to consulting.

ANSI/ISEA Standard on Workplace First Aid Kits Gets Update

First published by Safety+Health an NSC publication

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Image: Michael Sharkey

Arlington, VA — Consider the uniqueness of the work environment, and the types of potential injuries, when determining if additional first aid supplies are needed on a jobsite.

That’s a suggestion within the recently revised American National Standards Institute/International Safety Equipment Association standard Z308.1, which OSHA cites as a recommended, nonmandatory source of guidance for minimum first aid kit requirements. ANSI/ISEA Z308.1-2021 was approved April 15 and goes into effect Oct. 15. The previous update took place in 2015.

“Of course, getting in compliance sooner [rather] than later is good because these changes are meant to improve safe outcomes for employees,” Todd VanHouten, chair of ISEA’s first aid product group, said during a May 12 webinar that explored changes to the standard.

Among the highlights:
More specificity for tourniquets: The equipment intended to prevent blood loss should be at least 1.5 inches wide and be effective for limb sizes 7-33 inches round.
Making foil blankets mandatory: This measure was enacted after assessing similar international standards and recognizing “the multiple purposes that the item can serve to respond to first aid emergencies.”
Further guidance on bleeding control kits: These “contain more advanced first aid supplies to immediately treat life-threatening external bleeding,” ISEA says.

Additionally, the revision includes a “more robust discussion” to assist employers when assessing risks and identifying potential hazards to select additional first aid supplies. The standard calls on employers to consider:

  • What are the potential hazards?
  • What kinds of injuries have occurred or could occur in relation to these hazards?
  • What types of first aid supplies are needed to treat these injuries?

The revision retains the classification of “Class A” and “Class B” kits, introduced in the Z308.1-2015 update and based on the quantity and assortment of supplies. Class A kits generally are suitable for all wounds, minor burns and eye injuries. Class B kits are intended to treat injuries more often found in densely populated workplaces with complex and/or high-risk environments, such as warehouses, factories and outdoor areas.

“Employers should check their first aid cabinets against the new standard and make the necessary changes,” ISEA says. “In determining which class of kit is more appropriate for a given workplace, employers should conduct a workplace hazard assessment to first decide if a Class A or Class B minimum fill best fits the type of hazards at the facility.”

Employers are encouraged to inspect first aid kits “at least monthly” or “following a first aid incident when product is used,” and to disinfect cabinet surfaces regularly.


McCraren Compliance offers many opportunities in safety training to help circumvent accidents. Please take a moment to visit our calendar of classes to see what we can do to help your safety measures from training to consulting.

Control Hazardous Energy: 6 Steps

First published by Safety+Health an NSC publication

Photo: OSHA

A mainstay on OSHA’s Top 10 list of most cited violations is the standard on lockout/tagout (1910.147).

Simply put, “lockout/tagout is a safety procedure used to make sure equipment and machines are properly shut off and not able to start during maintenance or repair work,” the Texas Department of Insurance says. “This is known as controlling hazardous energy.”

Help prevent the unexpected release of stored energy with these six steps from TDI:

  1. Prepare. An authorized employee, defined by OSHA as “a person who locks out or tags out machines or equipment in order to perform servicing or maintenance on that machine or equipment,” must identify and control all potential forms of hazardous energy.
  2. Shut down. Turn off the equipment using the proper procedures. Inform all employees who use the equipment about the shutdown.
  3. Isolation. Isolate equipment from energy sources. This may mean turning off power at a breaker.
  4. Lock and tag. Apply a lockout device to keep equipment in an energy-isolating position. Then, place a tag on the device with the authorized employee’s name who performed the lockout.
  5. Check for stored energy. Hazardous energy can remain in the equipment even after the energy source has been disconnected and the machine has been locked out.
  6. Verify isolation. Check again to ensure the equipment is isolated and deenergized before service or maintenance begins.

McCraren Compliance assists employers in protecting their workers, starting with a comprehensive Work-site Analysis, Hazard Prevention, Controls, and Safety & Health Training.

Please contact us today at 888-758-4757 to learn how we can provide mine safety training and consulting for your business.

Mental Health Awareness Month

First published by Safety+Health an NSC publication

“The workplace can be a key location for activities designed to improve well-being among adults,” the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says.

Take time this month – and all year round – to promote awareness of worker well-being. Suggestions from CDC:

  • Make mental health self-assessment tools available to employees.
  • Offer free or subsidized clinical screenings for depression from a qualified mental health professional.
  • Distribute materials, including brochures and videos, to employees about the signs and symptoms of poor mental health as well as opportunities for treatment.
  • Provide free or subsidized lifestyle coaching, counseling or self-management programs.
  • Host seminars or workshops that address depression and stress management techniques, such as mindfulness, breathing exercises and meditation, to help employees reduce anxiety and stress.
  • Create and maintain dedicated, quiet spaces for relaxation activities.
  • Provide managers with training to help them recognize the signs and symptoms of stress and depression in team members and encourage them to seek help from qualified mental health professionals.
  • Give employees opportunities to participate in decisions about issues that affect job stress.

To help employers understand the role they play in supporting the mental health of their employees, the National Safety Council and NORC at the University of Chicago created the Mental Health Cost Calculator for Employers, funded by Nationwide. This easy-to-use tool provides business leaders with data-driven insight about the costs of employee mental distress in their workplaces.

Find the calculator at nsc.org/mentalhealthatwork#.


McCraren Compliance assists employers in protecting their workers, starting with a comprehensive Work-site Analysis, Hazard Prevention, Controls, and Safety & Health Training.

Please contact us today at 888-758-4757 to learn how we can provide mine safety training and consulting for your business.

‘Take-home toxins’: Study shows construction workers may be putting family at risk

First published by Safety+Health an NSC publication

Boston — Construction workers are at increased risk of unintentionally tracking various toxic metals from the jobsite into their homes – potentially putting family members at risk, results of a recent study show.

Researchers from Boston University’s School of Public Health and Harvard University’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health visited the homes of 27 workers (21 in construction) who had at least one child to collect dust samples and make observations. They identified and measured for 30 different toxic metals. The workers completed a questionnaire regarding work- and home-related practices that could affect exposure.

Results showed that the construction workers’ homes had higher concentrations of arsenic, chromium, copper, manganese, lead, nickel and tin dust than the homes of the other workers, who had janitorial or automobile repair jobs.

The higher concentrations were associated with worker factors such as lower education, not having a work locker to store clothes, mixing work and personal items, not having a place to launder clothes, and not washing hands and changing clothes after work.

The researchers say the new data underscores the need for more proactive and preventive measures to reduce so-called “take-home toxins,” including policies, resources and education for workers and their families.

“Many professions are exposed to toxic metals at work, but construction workers have a more difficult job implementing safe practices when leaving the worksite because of the type of transient outdoor environments where they work, and the lack of training on these topics,” lead study author Diana Ceballos, an assistant professor of environmental health and director of the Exposure Biology Research Laboratory at BU, said in a press release. “It is inevitable that these toxic metals will migrate to the homes, families and communities of exposed workers.”

Ceballos adds that the issue is compounded when construction workers live in disadvantaged communities or substandard housing that may already contain toxic metals.

The study is scheduled to be published in the June issue of the journal Environmental Research.


McCraren Compliance assists employers in protecting their workers, starting with a comprehensive Work-site Analysis, Hazard Prevention, Controls, and Safety & Health Training.

Please contact us today at 888-758-4757 to learn how we can provide mine safety training and consulting for your business.

EPA Proposes Landmark Ban on Asbestos

First published by Safety+Health an NSC publication

EPA Proposes Landmark Ban on AsbestosWashington — The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced a proposed rule that would ban the use of chrysotile asbestos, a known human carcinogen linked to lung cancer and mesothelioma – a cancer of the membranes in the abdomen and chest.

Chrysotile asbestos is the only known form of asbestos imported into the United States. It’s found in products such as aftermarket automotive brakes and linings, brake blocks, sheet gaskets, and other vehicle friction products.

EPA’s proposal marks the first risk-management rule issued under the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, which requires existing chemicals to undergo a risk evaluation. It’s the first proposed ban of asbestos in more than three decades.

“Today, we’re taking an important step forward to protect public health and finally put an end to the use of dangerous asbestos in the United States,” EPA Administrator Michael Regan said in an April 5 press release. “This historic proposed ban would protect the American people from exposure to chrysotile asbestos, a known carcinogen, and demonstrates significant progress in our work to implement the Toxic Substances Control Act law and take bold, long-overdue actions to protect those most vulnerable among us.”

According to the American Public Health Association, asbestos kills almost 40,000 Americans annually.

In the Jan. 4, 2021, Federal Register, EPA announced Part 1 of a final risk evaluation for asbestos, which centers on chrysotile asbestos, and states the substance poses unreasonable risk to workers involved in numerous operations, including:

  • Processing and industrial use of asbestos diaphragms in the chlor-alkali industry
  • Processing and industrial use of asbestos-containing sheet gaskets in chemical production
  • Industrial use and disposal of asbestos-containing brake blocks in the oil industry
  • Commercial use and disposal of aftermarket automotive asbestos-containing brakes/lining, other vehicle friction products and other asbestos-containing gaskets

Distracted Driving Awareness Month

First published by National Safety Council

Distracted Driving Awareness Month

Photo: NSC

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month and new NSC estimates show that our roads are the most dangerous they’ve been in years; on a typical day, eight people are killed and hundreds more are injured in distraction-affected crashes. Your workers face distracted driving risks on every trip, from the driveway to the parking lot and back home again.

This April, team with NSC to spread the word that distracted driving, including hands-free phone use and infotainment systems, puts everyone at risk. Sign up for free, ready-to-use resources to create a distracted driving program that engages your workforce and reminds everyone to #JustDrive.

“Drivers using cellphones are four times more likely to crash, and hands-free phone use offers no safety benefit,” the council says.

Be a focused driver.

What’s that? NSC says a focused driver:

  • Adjusts vehicle controls such as mirrors, seat, radio and air temperature before driving.
  • Programs the GPS before leaving.
  • Plans ahead – determines routes, directions and checks traffic conditions before departing.
  • Doesn’t multitask behind the wheel.
  • Doesn’t talk on a cellphone – even hands-free – or interact with the vehicle’s infotainment system.
  • Doesn’t reach down or behind the seat, pick up items from the floor, or clean the inside of the window while driving.
  • Doesn’t eat or drink while behind the wheel.

Take the NSC Just Drive Pledge

Commit to driving distraction-free by taking the NSC Just Drive Pledge and help us make the roads safer for everyone with a donation to our lifesaving mission.


McCraren Compliance can help you understand and comply with FMCSA, USDOT and ADOT and ensure your drivers and your vehicles operate safely and efficiently.

Call us today at 888-758-4757 or email us at info@mccrarencompliance.com to schedule your free FMCSA Compliance Assessment.