Safety Currents Express
April 2, 2012 / Volume 10, Number 7
OSHA Updates HAZCOM Standard
Distracted Driving Pop Quiz
NIOSH Issues New Standard for Respirators
Discover a New Kind of Safety Meeting
Double Team for Safety: OSHA, ASSE Renew Alliance
Sleep and Safety: The 2012 Sleep in America® Poll
OSHA Updates HAZCOM Standard
Aligns with UN Standard.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has updated its Hazard Communication Standard to align with United Nations' Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals.

The major changes include:
  • Hazard classification: Categorization of chemicals according to physical and health risks.
  • Labels: Inclusion of a signal word, pictogram, hazard statement, and precautionary statement for each hazard class and category.
  • Safety Data Sheets: New format containing 16 specific sections.
The revised standard seeks to:
  • Minimize confusion about chemical hazards
  • Facilitate training and raise hazard awareness, especially for low and limited-literacy workers
  • Provide standard, consistent labels and safety data sheets for imported and U.S.-made chemicals
  • Offer quicker and more efficient access to safety data sheets
  • Provide simpler HAZCOM training
  • Cut down on updates of safety data sheets and labels.
OSHA expects the new HAZCOM standard to help prevent 43 deaths and 585 injuries and illnesses each year. It is also expected to reduce trade barriers and generate cost-savings of over $475 million in productivity improvements for American businesses.

Read OSHA's Fact Sheet for a more detailed overview.
Get additional information on OSHA's HAZCOM page.
Distracted Driving Pop Quiz
A review for Distracted Driving Awareness Month.

During Distracted Driving Awareness Month this April, use this quiz to help your employees understand the risks of distracted driving, overcome misconceptions, and reassess their attitudes towards this unsafe behavior.
  1. True or False: The younger generation is better at multi-tasking while driving because their brains are wired differently.
  2. True or False: Talking on a cell phone affects a driver's reaction time as much as drinking 2 shots of liquor.
  3. True or False:While driving, using a hands-free cell phone is safer than using a hand-held phone.
  4. True or False: A vehicle driven at 60 miles per hour travels at 88 feet per second.
How did you do? View the answer key.

Preview DuPont Sustainable Solutions' driving safety program, Distracted Driving: Game Over free online.

NIOSH Issues New Standard for Respirators
Testing and certifying closed-circuit escape respirators.

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) has published final rules that revise and update the standards for the testing and certification of closed-circuit escape respirators.

These respirators provide miners, Navy and Coast Guard crews, and confined space workers with breathable air during emergencies. Other names for them include self-contained self rescuers and emergency escape breathing devices.

The new requirements for testing and certification include better performance to withstand dangerous environments; a new capacity-rating system; and new design requirements and testing standards.

The revisions seek to improve emergency respiratory protection and help prevent exposure to inadequate levels of oxygen, and dangerous amounts of gases, fumes, or smoke.

The final rules are based on field observations and reports from NIOSH and stakeholders. The updated standards take effect in early April, at which time NIOSH will no longer give approval under the old regulations.

Manufacturers still have three years to make and sell closed-circuit escape respirators approved under the old standard. The three-year gap will help designers make appropriate modifications and updates.

Read the NIOSH press release for more information.
Read the final rules.

Discover a New Kind of Safety Meeting
Attend an Operations Manager training workshop.

Show managers how to integrate safety management into their overall management program with Managing Safety: Systems That Work for Operations Managers. This two-day workshop introduces the DuPont system for managing safety throughout an organization and examines the role that managers should play in motivating and leading their organization to improved safety awareness and performance.

One specific area to be covered during this workshop is the Safety Action meeting.

Safety Action meetings are structured somewhat differently from the traditional safety meeting. In this alternative type of safety meeting, the manager or supervisor leads the group in discussion and action on safety issues. Meetings vary slightly in format to suit the type of topic under discussion (e.g., the communication of an incident investigation report, a problem to be solved, an issue to be analyzed, or the implementation of a new procedure).

Generally, to plan a Safety Action meeting, the leader:
  • Decides on and writes out the purpose of the meeting.
  • Outlines the facts to be presented.
  • Writes out the question for discussion.
Once the leader has given the group the question for discussion, the next stages of the meeting are for the group to:
  • Brainstorm ideas, together with their advantages and disadvantages.
  • Select actions to take.
  • Decide who will do what and when.
The goal in every work situation is to have people focused on safety, aware of their own safety and concerned about the safety of others, so they will do something about unsafe conditions and inform their co-workers about unsafe acts, not just leave it all up to the supervisor.

Safety Action meetings encourage this awareness and concern. They enable people to take this responsiblity.

Learn more about the Safety Action meeting during the two-day Managing Safety: Systems That Work for Operation Managers workshop.

Review the agenda or see the list of upcoming open workshops.
Call 877-714-2324 get more information on the Managing Safety: Systems That Work for Operation Managers workshop.

Find a workshop near you!
Double Team for Safety: OSHA, ASSE Renew Alliance
Partnership extended for two more years.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) have extended their partnership for two more years.

Among the main goals of the renewed Alliance is to continue reaching out to non-English or limited English-speaking workers including the translation of Alliance-developed products.

OSHA and ASSE will also enhance motor-vehicle safety campaigns and help raise safety awareness of public sector personnel. They will promote the annual North American Occupational Safety and Health (NAOSH) Week on May 6-12, whose theme is "Safety, What Every Business Needs."

The Alliance aims to provide "best practices for reducing and preventing worker exposures to health and physical hazards."

Read the ASSE press release for more information.

Sleep and Safety: The 2012 Sleep in America® Poll
First-of-its-kind survey covers transportation industry.

The National Sleep Foundation (NSF) polled transportation professionals – pilots, train operators, and drivers of buses, taxis, and limos – about their sleep habits and their impact on safety and job performance.

Highlights of the 2012 Sleep in America® poll include:
  • Around 25 percent of pilots and train operators admitted that their job performance is affected by sleepiness at least once a week compared to 17 percent for non-transportation employees.
  • Fifty-seven percent of train operators and 50 percent of pilots expressed dissatisfaction about the amount and quality of their sleep. Truck drivers, 44 percent; non-transportation staff, 42 percent; and drivers of taxis, limos, and buses, 29 percent.
  • Forty-four percent of train operators and over a third of pilots said that their schedule "does not allow adequate time for sleep;" 27 percent of non-transportation employees and truck drivers reported the same, and 20 percent of taxi, bus and limo drivers.
The survey revealed the extent to which sleepiness contributes to safety risks; because of sleepiness, 20 percent of pilots admitted they "made a serious error," while 18 percent of train operators and 14 percent of truck drivers have experienced "near misses."

The survey also covered the length of gaps between shifts as a factor contributing to sleepiness, and the impact of long commutes on sleep patterns.

Read the press release for more information and sleep tips.
Get more poll details.

Volume 10, Number 7
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Please note: Safety Currents Express is a complimentary bimonthly newsletter updating you on the latest trends, news and information. All issues may be forwarded in their entirety via e−mail. Materials in this issue may only be reprinted with permission.

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