Almost 25% of workers say their employers don’t offer COVID-19 safety training: survey

First published by Safety+Health an NSC publication.

Image result for social distance and mask trainingBannockburn, IL — Nearly 1 out of 4 workers don’t receive training on COVID-19 safety guidelines, according to a recent survey commissioned by compliance company Stericycle.

Researchers in September surveyed 1,000 U.S. adult workers who physically go to work at companies with at least 100 employees and 450 U.S. business leaders of organizations with 100-plus employees. Results show that 58% of the business leaders and 38% of the employees are concerned about contracting COVID-19 at work.

Nearly half of the business leaders (41%) don’t believe they can enforce COVID-19 safety guidelines, and 44% of the employees are concerned about co-workers not following safety protocol. Other results:

  • 79% of workers said they’d look for a new job if their employer didn’t offer training on COVID-19 safety guidelines.
  • 34% of workers would look for a new job if their employer didn’t take specific safety measures, such as providing personal protective equipment or ensuring physical distancing.
  • 45% of business leaders don’t think their safety measures are sufficiently proactive.
  • 27% of employees have been asked to provide their own PPE.

When it comes to COVID-19 vaccines, 24% of the employees said they wouldn’t feel safe working near a colleague who wasn’t vaccinated, and almost half of the business leaders (48%) plan to offer a COVID-19 vaccine. In December, the National Safety Council released a statement urging employers to develop a COVID-19 vaccination plan.


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.

Build a strong culture: Tips for ‘talking safety’

talking-safety.jpg

Image: Missouri Department of Transportation

No one can keep an entire organization safe on his or her own. Collaboration is needed to create a strong safety culture in which everyone looks out for each other.

There’s no magic formula to make someone heed safety advice. But improving the atmosphere around safety conversations can make it easier to give and receive advice in a graceful, constructive way. Here are some ways you can do that:

Retire the ‘safety police.’ The “gotcha” approach is counterproductive, experts say. When workers feel they’re being policed, they find ways to hide their unsafe behaviors, resulting in lost opportunities for improvement. To make a genuine, long-term impact, take a persuasive approach rather than a punitive one.

Speak the worker’s language. Instead of presenting the information in the way that makes the most sense to the speaker, consider how the worker will receive it. Before saying anything, take a moment to think about who is being spoken to and what he or she cares about, and tailor the conversation to speak to those motivations. And remember: Good communication goes both ways. Instead of doing all the talking, listen to what workers have to say – especially any questions or objections they bring up, which can reveal their motivations.
Demonstrate care and concern. By far, the greatest reason to give a worker for adopting a safe behavior is concern for his or her well-being, and the best way to avoid the appearance of lecturing is to show concern for that person. Be calm and keep emotions in check to help send the right message.
Focus on specifics. To avoid expressing judgment or disapproval and provoking a defensive reaction, limit comments to the precise unsafe behaviors or conditions that were witnessed.
Get (and give) permission. If you’re concerned that well-intentioned advice will come off as intrusive, it may help to set the stage for the safety conversation beforehand.
Lead by example and encourage others to do the same. Workers tend to do what those around them are doing, so it’s essential to demonstrate safe behaviors in addition to talking about them.

FMCSA final rule delays compliance date for CMV driver minimum training requirements

semis-on-highway.jpg
Photo: vitpho/iStockphoto

Washington — The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is delaying by two years the compliance date of its final rule on minimum training requirements for entry-level commercial motor vehicle drivers.

According to an interim final rule published in the Feb. 4 Federal Register, the new compliance date is Feb. 7, 2022.

The final rule, initially published in December 2016 and set to go into effect Feb. 7 this year, was the first to establish minimum training standards for first-time applicants for Class A or B commercial drivers’ licenses or those seeking a CDL upgrade to Class A or B. It also set standards for drivers attempting to obtain hazardous materials, passenger or school bus endorsements for the first time.

According to the interim rule, the extension will give FMCSA extra time to develop its Training Provider Registry – a list of certified training providers. Delaying the compliance date also gives state driver licensing agencies time to modify their computer systems and procedures to receive entry-level driver training data.

FMCSA in July initially proposed to delay two provisions of the final rule. However, 40 of the 56 comments received on the proposed rule advocated a full delay.

Petitions to reconsider the delay are due March 5, and comments on the interim final rule must be submitted by March 20.

Free online course: Understanding and preventing worker opioid misuse

training-tool.jpg

Photo: National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences’ Worker Training Program

Research Triangle Park, NC — The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences’ Worker Training Program has launched a free online training course designed to help employers and workers recognize occupational risk factors for opioid misuse and addiction, as well as develop solutions for prevention.

Along with providing background information on the opioid epidemic, the course’s 11 modules provide resources, exercises and case studies on topics such as:

  • Understanding opioid use disorder
  • Synthetic opioids (including fentanyl)
  • Occupational exposure
  • Workplace substance use prevention programs

Jonathan Rosen, a consultant for WTP – which aims to protect workers who handle hazardous materials and waste generation, removal, containment and transportation – steered the development of the endeavor, according to an article published in the November issue of Environmental Factors, NIEHS’s monthly newsletter.

Rosen outlines the following objectives for the course:

  • Address the impact of the opioid crisis on workers, workplaces and communities
  • Follow the public health model of primary, secondary and tertiary prevention
  • Define opioid use disorder as a disease that affects the brain
  • Remove stigma
  • Adopt action planning to allow participants to begin taking next steps.

The course cites recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data showing that 130 opioid-related overdose deaths occur daily. Overall, 399,000 such deaths occurred in the United States from 1999 to 2017. Speaking during an NIEHS seminar Oct. 10, Rosen encouraged employers to take preventive measures to limit hazards that may cause work-related injuries, noting that many cases of workplace-related opioid misuse involve prescriptions administered to treat injuries that occurred on the job.

“Prevention starts with making sure the job is not injurious,” Rosen said. “There are many potential solutions to help ensure that workers are not subject to conditions that will result in pain and injury.”

NIOSH offers free safety education for high school students

high-school.jpg

Photo: Sidekick/iStockphoto

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.

Training to defend against MSHA citations: Alternative Case Resolution Workshop: Understanding MSHA Litigation and Saving Costs

Tuesday, October 8 – Thursday, October 10, 2019
Husch Blackwell

1801 Wewatta Street, Suite 1000

Denver, CO 80202

The average mining operator now spends $20,000 per year on citations and penalties. In this must-attend conference for cost-savings, learn how to reduce or eliminate fines with the added benefit of improved safety conditions. With increasing citations, this workshop will prepare you to handle Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) inspectors and their findings.

This two-and-a-half day workshop includes breakfast and lunch and will cover:

  • Legal and procedural processes of field inspections
  • Citations & Alternative Case Resolution Initiative (ACRI) resolutions
  • Necessary skills for mine operators and representatives to navigate the ACRI process

Agenda
Tuesday, October 8
8:45 a.m. – Registration
9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. – Program

Wednesday, October 9
8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. – Program
6:30 p.m. – Networking dinner

Thursday, October 10
8:30 a.m. – 12:00 noon – Program

Who Should Attend

Presidents, CEOs, vice presidents, managers, supervisors/superintendents, forepersons, chief financial officers, mining engineers, safety and health directors, attorneys, human resource directors, and any other salaried/management personnel who interact with MSHA inspectors.

Workshop Cost
The fee of $675 includes:

  • Networking dinner on Wednesday, October 9
  • Two-and-a-half day program
  • Written presentation materials
  • Breakfast and lunch
  • Hands on instruction from three seasoned MSHA litigators – Mark Savit, Donna Pryor and Erik Dullea

Hotel Options
If you are traveling to Denver for this workshop, please click here to view a list of recommended local hotels.

Registration

Registration is requested by Tuesday, October 1. Space is limited; please register early.