NIOSH offers free safety education for high school students

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Washington — NIOSH, through its recently announced partnership with the nonprofit organization America Achieves, is offering a new high school curriculum that includes workplace safety and health education.

America Achieves’ career exploration course, Quest for Success, is designed to help students “learn about and prepare for jobs of the future,” NIOSH states.

The curriculum includes safety and health competencies related to identification of and control strategies for common workplace hazards. The material was adapted from Youth@Work – Talking Safety, another free curriculum from NIOSH and its partners.

“Ensuring that future jobs are also safe and healthy jobs is critical to ensuring the health and well-being of the workforce,” NIOSH Director John Howard said in a press release. “NIOSH is pleased to partner with America Achieves to work together to prepare future generations of workers with the knowledge and skills they need to stay safe at work through an innovative career readiness resource.”

Quest for Success was developed with feedback from national experts, employers and other industry partners. America Achieves launched a pilot program for the curriculum in 2018 with more than 2,400 students in Louisiana. It was later revised and adapted for a nationwide audience, according to the release.

100 Years of the Hard Hat, 100 Years of Safety

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This year marks the 100th anniversary of the invention of the hard hat. The hard hat is one of the most recognizable pieces of safety equipment in the world. Hard hats were first worn by construction workers beginning in the 1920s. Over the years, hard hats have come to symbolize the strength of the construction industry and its workers.

Hard hats are designed to protect workers from head injuries due to falling objects or overhead hazards by reducing the intensity and distributing the pressure of impacts to the head. The E.D. Bullard Company, in San Francisco, California, was the first manufacturer to develop and sell hard hats that were used by some miners and laborers. At the time, Bullard referred to their product as the “Hard Boiled®” hat. In the early 1930s, electricians in Boston, Massachusetts, also began wearing hard hats. By the mid-1930s, construction of the Golden Gate Bridge began, and all workers were expected to wear hard hats [Carpenter et al. 2019].

During the ensuing 40 years, hard hats of various shapes and materials reached the market. These included hard hats made of steel, aluminum, canvas and resin, Bakelite®, and fiberglass. In each case, these hats were advertised as light, resilient, and cool while protecting the worker. In the 1960s, hard hats made of plastics such as polyethylene were sold. In the 1970s, when OSHA and NIOSH were created under the OSH Act, the use of hard hats was regulated as part of the head protection standard, and hard hat use significantly expanded [OSHA 2019]. As demand increased, more manufacturers produced hard hats, including MSA, Honeywell, 3M, and Kask [Rosenberg et al. 2010].

The hard hat has a rich history, but its design has remained fairly consistent over the decades, including a suspension system and outer shell. In recent years, safety helmets, similar to those worn in mountain climbing or ice hockey, have begun to be used on some construction sites to improve worker protections beyond that provided by the traditional hard hat. NIOSH is studying the performance and design of hard hats and safety helmets to improve overall personal protection with the hope of potentially reducing the likelihood of traumatic brain injury caused by falls and to save lives [Konda et al. 2016; Wu et al. 2017]. NIOSH researchers are also working to improve consensus standards that address hard hat performance.

NIOSH Update: New Study Details Prevalence of Hearing Loss in Mining and Oil and Gas Workers

A new study by NIOSH researchers published in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine is the first to examine hearing loss prevalence and risk by industry within the Oil and Gas Extraction sector, and within most Mining sector industries. Researchers found that in many industries within these sectors, at least 25% of the workers had hearing loss. In some industries, more than 30% had hearing loss. Read more about the study.

Upcoming Webinar on Expanded Focus for OSH

Expanding Research Partnerships Webinar Series logo 2019

Registration is open for the last installment of the 2019 Expanding Research Partnerships Webinar Series! Join us on September 18 for a webinar on the expanded focus for occupational safety and health. Paul A. Schulte, PhD, NIOSH Director of the Division of Science Integration, will present “Towards An Expanded Focus for Occupational Safety and Health,” and George Delclos, MD, MPH, PhD, Professor, University of Texas Health Science Center School of Public Health, will present “The Expanded Focus for Occupational Safety and Health (OSH): Implications for Research and Training of OSH Professionals.” The event is 12:00–1:30 p.m. (ET).

New Study Details Prevalence of Hearing Loss among Noise-Exposed Mining, and Oil and Gas Extraction Workers

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As many as 1 in 3 workers affected in some Mining industries

A new study published in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine external icon is the first to examine hearing loss prevalence and risk by industry within the Oil and Gas Extraction sector, and within most Mining sector industries. Researchers at the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) found that in many industries within these sectors, at least 25% of the workers had hearing loss. In some industries, more than 30% had hearing loss. Read more»

Safe + Sound Week is just around the corner!

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From August 12-18, 2019, the U.S. Department of Labor will join with workers and job creators across the country for Safe + Sound Week, a nationwide event that recognizes the successes of workplace safety and health programs and offers information and ideas on how to keep America’s workers safe.

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Sign up to participate in Safe + Sound Week

Visit our website to learn more about how you can participate.

 

Third Annual Safe + Sound Week set for Aug. 12-18

OSHA, NIOSH and a number of safety organizations – including the National Safety Council – are teaming up for the third annual Safe + Sound Week, set for Aug. 12-18.

This year’s event is designed to “celebrate the successes of businesses that have implemented safety and health programs in the workplace.” Employers of all sizes and from all industries that seek to recognize their commitment to the safety of workers, customers, the public and supply chain partners are encouraged to participate.