American Heart Month

Original article published by CDC

American Heart Month Toolkits 2023

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February is American Heart Month, a time when all people can focus on their cardiovascular health. This Heart Month the Division for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention is expanding the reach of the Million Hearts® and CDC Foundation’s “Live to the Beat” campaign, which focuses on encouraging and empowering Black adults ages 35 to 54 to take small steps to reduce their risks for cardiovascular disease (CVD).

CVD and CVD mortality are increasing in working-age adults, and Black adults are among those bearing the highest burden of CVD and the related health consequences, particularly in the United States. Black adults in the United States die from heart disease at a rate two times higher than White adults.

We encourage individuals, health care and public health professionals, and our partners to help close the disparities gap.

Using this website’s tools and “Live to the Beat” resources, help your patients, family, and friends learn how to control their blood pressure, manage their cholesterol and blood glucose levels, move more, eat healthier, stress less, work with their health care team, and quit smoking.


Protect your heart! During American Heart Month, follow NIOSH on FacebookInstagramTwitter, and LinkedIn for the latest research and information related to workplace safety and health and your heart.


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.

Don’t Be “Lead” Astray From Safety

Original article published by NIOSH

February 7th is National Periodic Table Day!

 

Photo by ©Getty images

On this day, we pay tribute to the table that helps us understand the properties and characteristics of chemical elements. One particular element, lead, also known as Pb on the periodic table, has been used by humans for thousands of years. Despite its many positive uses, lead continues to be a hazardous exposure in many jobs and industries.

Here are some things to keep in mind about lead exposure:

Your body absorbs lead when you inhale contaminated air at work.
If you eat, drink, or smoke in areas where lead is processed or stored, you could swallow lead dust without knowing.
You can expose anybody who lives or works in your home. If you work with or near lead, you can take home lead dust. Lead dust on your clothes, shoes, or hair is hard to notice.
To keep workers and their families safe, NIOSH provides information and recommendations on the NIOSH lead webpage. The page offers information to reduce lead exposure in the workplace for both workers and employers:

  • Workers: If you work with or near products or materials that contain lead, it can get inside your body. In addition to being exposed at work, taking lead home is a concern. Learn ways workers can protect themselves and their families from lead exposure.
  • Employers: Workplace exposure limits are meant to protect workers from hazardous exposures in the workplace, including lead. Employers must ensure exposure limits are not exceeded. The page offers ways employers can use the hierarchy of controls to keep their workers safe. Read More»

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.

Selecting safe vehicles for your employees

Original article published by Safety+Health

If you’re responsible for purchasing or leasing passenger vehicles for worker use, NIOSH says you need to consider two factors to help ensure safety:

  1. How well will the vehicle protect its occupants in the event of a crash?
  2. Which safety features are most effective in preventing a crash?

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration assigns occupant protection safety ratings based on combined results from crash tests. NHTSA gives each vehicle one to five stars, evaluating how it performs in crash tests (one star is the lowest rating; five stars is the highest). Those ratings can be found at nhtsa.gov/ratings.

If you’re considering buying or leasing used vehicles, NHTSA provides up-to-date information on vehicle recalls at nhtsa.gov/recalls. Another such resource is CheckToProtect.org, from the National Safety Council.

If you’re going the new vehicle route, your next step should be looking at available automated safety features, also called advanced driver assistance systems. Levels of automation range from zero (no automation) to five (full automation).

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety analyzes crash and injury claims for all years, makes and models of vehicles, comparing vehicles with and without each type of ADAS. In a fact sheet, IIHS summarizes the evidence supporting the benefits of ADAS.

It’s also important that workers using the vehicles understand how automated safety systems work. Forty percent of respondents to a University of Iowa survey said that, at some point, their vehicle had behaved in a way they didn’t understand. This result led to the creation of MyCarDoesWhat.org, in partnership with NSC. This simple, interactive site explains each type of ADAS safety feature, using strategies tailored to fit people of different ages and learning styles.

“The bottom line: Resources are available to help employers and consumers select the safest possible vehicles, and to help drivers understand how automated vehicle safety features work,” NIOSH says.


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.

Washington FACE Program publishes three injury narratives in Spanish

Original article published by Safety+Health
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Tumwater, WA — The Washington State Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation Program has published three new narratives in Spanish.

FACE narratives summarize work-related incidents and list recommendations and requirements that could have prevented them from occurring. In addition, they provide preliminary information about the incident, similar to OSHA’s Fatal Facts and the Mine Safety and Health Administration’s Fatalgrams.

The narratives:

•           Siding Installer Falls 23 Feet from Pump Jack Scaffold

•           Operator Crushed Between Forklift and Storage Rack

•           Framer Falls 25 Feet from House Roof

An accompanying slideshow for each is available on the WA FACE website, along with a full library of narratives. The narratives are designed to be used as formal or informal educational opportunities so similar incidents can be prevented.


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.

Respirator Fit Evaluation Challenge

Original article published by Safety+Health

NIOSH offering $350K in prize money

Photo: NIOSH

Washington — Do you have an idea for improving fit testing of respirators? NIOSH is offering $350,000 in total prize money as part of its Respirator Fit Evaluation Challenge.

“While OSHA requires annual fit testing for all employees who must wear a respirator, research has shown that small or disadvantaged workplaces may not have the resources to conduct initial and annual respirator fit testing,” NIOSH says. “Additionally, the public now wears tight-fitting respirators, such as N95 filtering facepiece respirators, more than ever for protection from hazards such as infectious diseases, pollution or wildfire smoke without knowing whether they provide adequate protection.”

During the first phase of the challenge, individuals or teams must submit a concept paper of 10 pages or fewer outlining an idea on how to improve fit testing. The submission deadline is May 1. Up to 20 participants or teams will be eligible to win $5,000 each while advancing to Phase 2.

Anyone interested in participating must register on the challenge website. An orientation webinar is slated for Feb. 2, allowing participants to ask questions and get additional information.

“Fit testing is vital to ensure a respirator wearer is receiving the expected level of protection and is wearing a correctly fitting model and size,” Maryann D’Alessandro, director of NIOSH’s National Personal Protective Technology Laboratory, said in the release. “We hope this challenge helps us identify a practical solution that delivers users, whether in a workplace or not, immediate information on a respirator’s fit.

“This challenge provides an opportunity for innovators to develop a solution that can improve the safety and health of everyone who wears a filtering facepiece respirator. NIOSH looks forward to receiving novel ideas to improve respirator fit testing through this challenge.”


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.

FACE Report: Site Superintendent Run Over by Backing Dump Truck

Original article published by NIOSH

A 60-year-old construction site superintendent died when a dump truck backing up ran over him. He had 40 years’ experience and worked for a new single-family housing construction contractor.

On the day of the incident, the superintendent was in charge of coordinating and directing subcontractors and scheduling dump trucks to haul away construction debris. Two dump truck drivers employed by a solid waste recycling company were emptying dumpsters and hauling away the debris. While emptying a dumpster, a 5-gallon bucket of paint fell out and spilled on the street. The superintendent came over to organize the cleanup. He assigned one of the subcontractors to get sawdust to absorb the paint and told the drivers he was going to direct vehicles away from it. The drivers then entered their trucks to go pick up the next dumpster located close to the spilled paint. The trucks had to be parked side-by-side as the grapple on one truck needed to pick up the dumpster and empty it into the other. The driver of truck #1 drove out of the alley, turned right, and parked on the side of the street near the superintendent. The driver of truck #2 then turned left onto the street, drove forward, and stopped. He checked his mirrors and got a hand signal from the superintendent to begin backing up. As he was backing up, he lost sight of the superintendent and ran him over. The incident was unwitnessed. It is unknown why the superintendent was in the backing zone, or why the driver could not see him.

Following the incident, investigators found:

  • The truck did not have a backup camera, nor was an observer signaling that it was safe to back up.
  • The truck’s backup alarm was working as it backed up.
  • The truck drivers were not trained on procedures for backing up at construction sites.

REQUIREMENTS

  • Before backing a dump truck, the driver must determine that no one is currently in the backing zone and it is reasonable to expect that no employee(s) will enter the backing zone while operating a dump truck in reverse. If employees are in the backing zone, you must make sure the truck is backed only when: An observer signals that it is safe to back or an operable mechanical device that provides the driver a full view behind the dump truck is used, such as a video camera. See WAC 296-155-610(2)(f)(ii)
  • It is the responsibility of management to establish, supervise, and enforce, in a manner which is effective in practice training programs to improve the skill and competency of all employees in the field of occupational safety and health. See WAC 296-155-100(1)(c)

RECOMMENDATIONS

FACE investigators concluded that to help prevent similar occurrences: General contractors at multi-employer job sites should:

  • Continuously assess the hazards of vehicles to workers on foot and ensure hazards are corrected.
  • Require workers to wear ANSI Class 2 high-visibility garments, such as vests, when exposed to vehicular traffic. Employers who use dump trucks should:
  • Consider installing pedestrian proximity detection systems on trucks to alert drivers of workers on foot.
  • Train drivers that they must use a signaler or back up camera when backing near workers on foot.
  • Create and enforce policies that:
    • Drivers maintain visual contact with workers on foot. When visual contact is lost, drivers should stop and not resume movement until visual contact is re-established.
    • Workers on foot stay out of backing zones unless trained and acting as an observer signaling the driver.

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.

National Miners Day: Reflecting on the Past, Appreciating the Present, and Embracing the Future

Original article published by NIOSH

Today is National Miners Day, giving us a chance to reflect on how this vital industry benefits our lives. More importantly, it is a day to think of those who work in this challenging profession and face its hazards, with some help from NIOSH.

Lawmakers established the first Miners Day on December 6, 2009. The date is an observance of the anniversary of the Monongah, West Virginia, mining disaster where 362 miners died from a catastrophic explosion. It remains the highest death toll of any U.S. mining disaster.

Mining remains one of the most hazardous industry sectors, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, these hazards are often unseen because about half of the more than 12,000 mines spread across every state in the U.S. are in rural areas, and many are entirely underground.

The minerals, stones, metals, and other raw materials that come out of mines are usually transformed beyond recognition to make valuable goods. The cars we drive and roads we travel, the utensils and appliances we use to make our meals, and the mobile devices and computers we communicate with are all possible because mine workers delivered the raw materials needed to make these useful items.

The mine workers who deliver these resources face many potential hazards including noise, dust, shifting geology, poor illumination, repetitive motions in unusual positions, and working around enormous pieces of moving equipment. The training, technologies, and work practices to manage and eliminate these hazards play a critical role in their profession.

he NIOSH Mining Program’s rich history has roots in the former Bureau of Mines, and with its ongoing research, continues to contribute meaningful improvements to the way miners work and the methods by which mines can keep their workers healthy and safe. Since its inception in 1996, the NIOSH Mining Program has developed new technologies and made other contributions that include the following:

Advances in mining equipment:

  • Cap lamp designs and brighter area lights reduce glare and help miners to see potential hazards more clearly
  • Mobile dry scrubbers pull hazardous coal dust out of the air
  • Intelligent proximity detection systems keep miners safe around moving equipment
  • Continuous personal dust monitors empower coal miners with near real-time information about coal dust exposure

New apps and software:

  • ErgoMine mobile app helps audit mining workplaces for potential ergonomic improvements
  • EXAMiner hazard recognition software allows users to perform a virtual workplace examination to build confidence for real-life settings
  • FAST software program supports field-based silica monitoring for quicker results than sending samples to a lab
  • Ground Support Factor of Safety Calculator software aids in designing ground support in underground mining excavations
  • S-Pillar software helps design stable pillars in stone mines

Safety innovations and training:

  • Hearing loss simulator lets users experience what hearing loss sounds like and to avoid hazardous noise moving forward
  • Innovations in enclosed cab equipment design keep hazardous dust out and away from miners in the cab
  • Practical noise controls for several of the most hazardous noise sources in mining
  • Dozens of guidelines, best practices, and training guides on topics such as hearing protection, refuge chamber use, slip-trip-fall prevention, workstation design, and dust control

The mining industry has come a long way since the Monongah disaster, but modern-day miners still face many challenges and risks, including new ones that come with changing technology and industry practices. NIOSH researchers are committed to helping miners meet these challenges so that all miners can go home to their families uninjured and healthy every day.

See the Mining Program’s website to learn more about the latest mining innovations and other NIOSH mining-related research.


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.

Study explores top causes of driving-related deaths in oil and gas extraction industry

Original article published by Safety+Health

Washington — For oil and gas extraction workers, a combination of extended work hours, long commutes and insufficient sleep increases their odds of engaging in risky driving behaviors, according to a recent NIOSH study.

A previous study from the Centers for Disease Control in Prevention found that motor vehicle-related crashes are the leading cause of work-related deaths in the industry. To explore the underlying causes, NIOSH researchers – from October 2017 to February 2019 – surveyed 500 oil and gas extraction workers in Colorado, North Dakota and Texas.

Almost two-thirds of the respondents reported working 12 or more hours a day, while nearly half slept less than seven hours a night. The average round-trip commute time was about two hours. About a quarter of the workers reported falling asleep while operating a work vehicle or feeling “extremely drowsy” while driving at work more than once a month. Additionally, 17% said they nearly had crashed while driving at work within the past week.

Findings also show that although a majority of the workers’ employers had established vehicle safety policies covering near-miss crash reporting, fewer than half of the respondents indicated their employers’ policies included journey management (47%), fatigue management (42%) and maximum work hours (39%).

“These results underscore the need for employer policies to prevent risky driving events among workers in oil and gas extraction,” NIOSH says, adding that those policies should include “programs to limit long work hours, reduce long daily commutes, promote sufficient sleep and reduce drowsy driving.”

The study was published online in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine.


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.

Mechanic using welder fatally burned when washer fluid drum explodes

Original article published by Safety+Health

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Case report: 19MA058
Issued by: Massachusetts State Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation Program
Date of report: July 15, 2022

A 64-year-old automotive mechanic was working to remove the fuel pump from a car at his employer’s service garage. To accomplish the task, he was constructing a special tool using an oil filter wrench and other metal. The mechanic set up a temporary welding station on top of a 55-gallon steel drum that contained window washer fluid concentrate. The drum was nearly empty and had two bung holes in the lid. A co-worker held the work piece in position by extending his arm. To assemble the tool, the mechanic made a spot weld and was about to make another when the drum exploded and the top blew off. His co-worker, who suffered facial trauma and a burned arm, fled the garage as washer fluid vapors ignited and the fire began to spread. The mechanic was covered in burning fluid and was on the floor of the garage, underneath one of the vehicles. Other workers heard the explosion and gathered outside. Realizing the mechanic was still in the garage, they reentered the building to drag him out and used fire extinguishers to try to put out the flames on his body. His clothing eventually burned and was torn away to fully extinguish the flames on his body. Several people in the area heard the explosion and called 911. First responders arrived at the scene. The mechanic was treated at the scene and driven by ambulance to a nearby airport, then flown by helicopter to a regional Level I trauma center. He died six weeks later.

To help prevent similar occurrences, employers should:

  • Provide an appropriate location to perform welding work. Hot work should take place a safe distance from flammable and combustible liquids.
  • Ensure workers using welding equipment are trained in the safe operation of their equipment.
  • Ensure all workers are educated on hazardous materials in the workplace.
  • Develop and implement a comprehensive safety and health program.

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.

Help prevent workplace violence

Original article published by Safety + Health

Workplace violence led to nearly 18,000 deaths over a recent 27-year period, according to a recently published report from NIOSH and two other federal agencies.

A total of 17,865 workers were victims of workplace homicides from 1992 to 2019 – with a high of 1,080 in 1994. In 2019, workplace homicides totaled 454 – a 58% drop from the 1994 total. Follow these do’s and don’ts from NIOSH to help prevent workplace violence.

Do:

  • Attend employer-provided training on how to recognize, avoid and respond to potential workplace violence situations.
  • Report perceived threats or acts of violence to your supervisor.
  • Follow existing workplace policies.
  • Remain aware of and support co-workers and customers if a threatening situation occurs.

Don’t:

  • Argue with a co-worker or customer if they threaten you or become violent. If needed, go to a safe area (ideally, NIOSH says, a room that locks from the inside, has a second exit route, and has a phone or silent alarm).
  • Underestimate a threat. Take each one seriously.
  • Ignore odd behavior. Report it.

Indicators of Workplace Violence, 2019

National Crime Victimization Survey


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.