Safety Current Express  
.   June 17, 2010   |   Volume 8, Number 12 .
  IN THIS ISSUE:
OSHA: In The Know
Refining Refinery Safety
Get Safety Going™
Train. Sustain. Transform.
"NIOSHA" Partnerships and Permissible Exposure Limits (PELs)
Making The Manufacturing Industry Safer
 
OSHA: In The Know
A look at what's happening in the world of OSHA

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has revised a safety standard on steel erection and is proposing rule changes on Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP) inspections and slips, trips, and falls.

Steel Erection Standard
The revised Steel Erection standard, per the Federal Highway Administration, requires employers who conduct highway bridge construction to get a Registered Engineer to prepare plans for any temporary braces or supports used to stabilize structures such as bridges during highway construction.

The added provision seeks to prevent incidents like the one in Colorado in 2004. An overpass was under construction and a 100-foot, 40-ton steel girder on the work site collapsed and fell on a passing SUV, killing three people inside. It could have also hit and killed the construction staff had they been present.

The OSHA press release can be viewed here. The revision took effect on May 17, 2010. More information can be found here.

Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP)
OSHA is seeking to revise the inspection provisions of the Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP), which grants exemption from programmed inspections to qualified employers.

The proposal aims to clarify the definition of sites that would be inspected in spite of SHARP exemptions; to let compliance officers proceed with enforcement visits from referrals at sites undergoing Consultation visits and at sites that have been awarded with SHARP status; and limit the deletion period from OSHA's programmed inspection schedule for those employers participating in the SHARP program.

The Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs is examining the proposal. See more information here.

Slips, Trips and Falls
OSHA has released a notice of proposed rulemaking that seeks to improve protection from slips, trips and falls on walking and working surfaces. Current regulations are outdated and/or limited.

The revisions will require general-industry employers to provide safer, more effective fall protection devices such as self-retracting lanyards and ladder safety and rope descent systems, which construction and maritime employees already receive. Also, the changes empower OSHA to fine employers who let workers climb certain ladders without fall protection.

The notice of proposed rulemaking was published in the Federal Register, view it here.

OSHA: In The Know
Refining Refinery Safety
Jordan Barab urges the refinery industry to improve safety.

Deputy Assistant Secretary for OSHA, Jordan Barab spoke at the National Petrochemical and Refiners Association National Safety Conference in San Antonio, Texas on May 19, 2010.

In his speech, Learning From Industry Mistakes, he said that there have been more than 20 serious incidents in U.S. refineries. He cited three egregious examples and attributed them to "process-safety related problems, and, most likely, systemic safety and health problems - in the company and in the entire industry."

"Your workers are dying on the job and it has to stop," he added.

Admitting that something is desperately wrong and that the status quo isn't working, Barab laid out three concepts that could help refineries improve safety. He stressed:

  • Effective process safety programs and strong workplace health and safety culture.
    He urged for better identification of useful leading indicators, transparency, commitment from top management, and a safety culture that goes beyond training.
  • Learning from mistakes.
    Barab revealed that 70% of citations to refineries involve top four process safety management (PSM) components: mechanical integrity, process safety information, operating procedures, and process hazard analysis. Refineries received letters last year informing them of these hazards, but as Barab lamented, inspectors are still seeing the same risks in many worksites.
  • The problem with numbers.
    Barab warned that having good OSHA 300 logs does not necessarily reflect a good safety program. Safety stats like DART rates are useful, but he urged refineries not to rely on those figures alone. He also advised refineries not to play the blame game, and spoke of the industry's bashing by the media as an indicator of trouble.
Barab criticized OSHA for a narrow targeting system, which is based on DART rates and said that one must look at the industry as a whole so as not to overlook any indicators.

He spoke of other general safety guidelines: avoiding complacency, examining close calls, encouraging reporting, and the continuing need for OSHA to cooperate with employers and other government agencies.
Barab's entire speech can be viewed here.

Refining Refinery Safety
 
GET SAFETY GOING™
What STOP™ For Each Other leaders need to know.

What is STOP™ For Each Other? STOP™ stands for DuPont's Safety Training Observation Program, a program aimed at preventing incidents and injuries. STOP™ For Each Other is designed to help participants look at safety in a new way, so they can help themselves and their co-workers work safely. During STOP™, participants will develop their safety awareness and talk with others about all aspects of safety.

STOP™ For Each Other consists of self-study workbooks in hard copy or as e-workbooks, field activities, and group discussion meetings with videos on DVD. These components work together to introduce and reinforce the STOP™ concepts that help participants change their approach to safety. The result is an effective safety program that can help significantly reduce incidents and injuries at your site.

STOP™ group discussion leaders play a major role in the success of the program. Leaders conduct group discussion meetings with program participants and may also conduct field activities with them. They reinforce STOP™ For Each Other concepts and encourage participants to apply what they learn during STOP™ training.

STOP™ group discussion leaders are chosen because of their leadership roles in the organization. They are the people who can create an atmosphere that will help participants learn about safety. Their preparation and enthusiasm will have a significant effect on the quality of each person's learning.

Would you like to learn more? Join us for a FREE one-hour overview webinar.

Or attend a STOP™ one-day workshop in your area.


Call 888-203-8424 to learn how to get safety going in your organization.

Join us for a FREE one-hour overview webinar!
Training Solutions Forum 2010: Train. Sustain. Transform.

Join us at the Virginia Beach Oceanfront Hilton!
August 1st - 4th

Don't miss this exciting opportunity to share best practices with your peers and learn from industry experts. Register today!

Get the tools to help improve culture, efficiency and performance in your workplace.

  • Coastal eLearning track - perfect for Coastal eLearning users, training professionals and individuals who want to learn how to optimize an e-learning program. View the agenda or register for the Coastal eLearning Forum.
  • Safety Culture track - a unique opportunity for safety professionals who want to learn how behavior-based safety will help them reach a new level of safety awareness in their facilities. View the agenda or register for the Safety Culture Forum.
In addition to great breakout sessions, the forum will feature keynote speakers Betsy Myers, Marianne Jennings and Ken Woodward. For more information, visit the Forum homepage.

Don't delay - call 888-200-6515 or register online.

Building a Safer Construction Industry
"NIOSHA" Partnerships and Permissible Exposure Limits (PELs)
NIOSH and OSHA team up as both agencies seek revisions to PEL standards and other issues.

During the American Industrial Hygiene Conference and Exposition in Denver late last month, OSHA Administrator David Michaels and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Director John Howard spoke of the unprecedented level of cooperation between their respective agencies.

According to an American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) press release, Howard said that "NIOSH science should provide a sound basis for OSHA regulations" while Michaels stated that NIOSH can supply OSHA with data on "emerging workplace hazards."

Two of the nation's top safety officials also agreed that there was a need to revise current PEL standards, whose scientific basis date back to the 1950's. Both agencies are professing cooperation to achieve this task.

Michaels expressed fear there might be the duplication of risk assessments, given the alliance between NIOSH and OSHA. To help prevent this, Michaels and Howard are eyeing the establishment of a federal "clearinghouse" for risk assessments that would house all studies of workplace risks conducted by various agencies in one federal identity.

Michaels stressed, however, that instituting safety programs is a more pressing issue than PELs. He also reiterated penalty increases for willful violations.

The AIHA press release can be viewed here.

'NIOSHA' Partnerships and Permissible Exposure Limits (PELs)
 
Making The Manufacturing Industry Safer
NIOSH publishes two more documents to help keep employees safe.

The previous issue of Safety Currents Express reported that the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health released fall-protection guidelines for manufacturing. Once again, the agency has put out two more safety documents for the industry: this time on respiratory hazards and emerging risks.

Respiratory ailments in manufacturing include silicosis, asbestosis, byssinosis and chronic beryllium disease. The first three, along with pneumoconioses and hypersensitivity pneumonitis caused a higher percentage of deaths in the manufacturing sector versus other sectors, according to the Work-Related Lung Disease Surveillance Report 2007.

The NIOSH document can be viewed here. It provides "How You Can Help" guidelines:

  • Use existing data to identify and track workplace hazards
  • Educate employers and employees
  • Apply research-based knowledge
  • Partner with researchers
Reducing these risks is covered under Strategic Goal 5 of the National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA) Manufacturing Sector Council. More information on respiratory risks, along with efforts to manage them can be found here.

NIOSH also released a document on emerging risks in the manufacturing industry: nanotechnology, titanium dioxide, acrylamide, metal working fluid components, among others.

Making the Manufacturing Industry Safer
 
 Volume 8, Number 12 | © 2010 Coastal Training Technologies Corp. 
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