April 16, 2012 / Volume 10, Number 8
Safety in a Time of Globalization: ICOH Holds 30th Global Congress
'At a Deadly Intersection:' NTSB Holds Distracted Driving Forum
Get Safety Going
Spoiled Safety: Foodborne Illnesses Linked to Imported Foods
NIOSH Blogs about Sleep and Safety
Save on New Releases in April
Safety in a Time of Globalization: ICOH Holds 30th Global Congress
This year's theme was "Occupational Health for All: From Research to Practice."

More than 1700 participants took part in the 30th International Congress of the International Commission on Occupational Health (ICOH), March 18-23, 2012 in Cancún, Mexico.

The Congress sought to improve the bridge between safety research and practice. More than 90 percent of scientific papers on occupational health come from developed countries, yet such research is most needed in developing nations.

The International Labor Organization (ILO) estimates that in member countries, around 2.2 million die from occupational risks each year.

Thirty-four ICOH Scientific Committees helped organize the Congress, which featured 10 plenary sessions, 30 semi-plenary sessions, and about 200 mini symposia. Topics and presentations included:

  • Occupational safety as a human right
  • Employee involvement in safety
  • Safety leadership
  • Concealment of occupational injury records
  • Occupational safety and climate change
  • Ergonomics and development
  • Scientific communication for OSH
  • Behavioral medicine and occupational health
  • Occupational hygiene training for the 21st century
  • Migrant worker safety

Other sessions discussed regional and country-specific issues in safety. A truly global event, the Congress featured speakers from South Korea, Cameroon, Japan, and more. View the broad range of topics and papers.

For more information, visit the Congress website. Held every three years, the Congress will be hosted in Seoul, South Korea in 2015.

The 30th ICOH Congress was co-sponsored by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). It is part of the agency's Global Collaborations Program, which recognizes the need for worldwide cooperation on safety.
'At a Deadly Intersection:' NTSB Holds Distracted Driving Forum
National Transportation Safety Board chair opens proceedings.

Americans drive billions of miles each day and want to be connected anytime, anyhow, anywhere, said NTSB chairperson Deborah Hersman at a distracted driving forum in Washington, D.C. held March 27.

And it's a confluence that forms the "deadly intersection of mobility and connectivity."

In her opening remarks at the Attentive Driving Forum: Countermeasures to Distraction, Hersman stressed the dangers of distracted driving, citing several tragic fatalities. She urged the public to "dispel the myth of multi-tasking" and "put attention back in the driver's seat, improve safety, and most importantly, save lives."

Attentive Driving: Countermeasures to Distraction featured four panels, which:
  • Discussed the nature of distracted driving, including categories of distraction and the limitations of research on the subject
  • Examined the laws against distracted driving and their enforcement
  • Explored efforts to change attitudes and behaviors
  • Identified the role and impact of device design and technology.
Read the full agenda.
Read chairperson Hersman's closing remarks.

Get Safety Going
Total Observation

To see safety as you observe yourself, use your "mind's eye." Your "mind's eye" is your "mental television," the personal channel you can tune in to visualize how you will perform a job before you actually do it.

Using your mind's eye, you
  • Think about how you have done the job in the past
  • Think about how you are planning to do the job now
  • Compare these images with how the job should be done safely.
As you learn to see safety, you'll start to notice clues to safe and unsafe situations. One way to look more closely at these clues is through Total Observation.

Total Observation is a technique that involves using your senses to become aware of everything around you. When you use Total Observation you use sight, hearing, smell and touch to make sure an area is safe.

In Total Observation you:
  • Look Above, Below, Behind, and Inside (ABBI)
  • Listen for unusual sounds
  • Smell for unusual odors
  • Feel for unusual temperatures or vibrations.
You can use Total Observation to check out a situation that could present a hazard, or to get to the bottom of a problem. In these cases, Total Observation is a good tool for seeing safety.

Learn more! Attend a FREE one-hour webinar or participate in a STOP™ Overview Workshop in a city near you.

Taken from the Refresher Unit of STOP™ For Each Other.

Copyright © 2012 Coastal Training Technologies Corp. All rights reserved. The DuPont Oval Logo, DuPont™,The miracles of science™ and all products denoted with © or ™ are registered trademarks or trademarks of E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company or its affiliates.
Call 877-714-2324 to learn how to get safety going in your organization.

Join us for a FREE one-hour overview webinar!

Attend a one-day STOP™ workshop in your area!
Spoiled Safety: Foodborne Illnesses Linked to Imported Foods
Fish the main reason to blame.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported last month that foodborne illness outbreaks due to imported food rose in 2009 and 2010.

The research comes from the CDC's Foodborne Disease Outbreak Surveillance System from 2005-2010. During that time span, 39 outbreaks and 2,348 illnesses were linked to food imported from 15 countries. Seventeen of those outbreaks took place in 2009 and 2010. Around 45 percent of total occurrences came from Asia.

Fish was the main culprit (17 out of the 39), followed by spices. As much as 85 percent of seafood in the United States is imported and depending on the season, so is up to 60 percent of produce.

These trends parallel America's increasingly global food supply; according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the country imported $78 billion worth of food in 2007, up from $41 billion in 1998. Most of the imports were fruit, vegetables, processed food, and seafood.

For more information, read the CDC press release.

NIOSH Blogs about Sleep and Safety
Offers advice to employers and employees.

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) posted a blog to help educate employers on sleep and its impact on workplace safety.

More American workers are not sleeping well. In the past decade, 30 percent of workers reported having only six or fewer hours of sleep each day, an amount experts consider "too short."

According to the blog, the risks of long work hours and shift work include:
  • Decline in mental function and physical ability, including emotional fatigue and a decline in the function of the body’s immune system
  • Higher rates of depression, occupational injury, and poor perceived health
  • Increased risk of long-term health effects, such as heart disease, gastrointestinal disorders, mood disturbances, and cancer.
In turn, lack of sleep affects organizations through reduced productivity, increase in errors, absenteeism and presenteeism (present at work but not fully functioning because of health problems or personal issues), increased healthcare and worker compensation costs, and workforce attrition due to disability, death or moving to jobs with less demanding schedules.

While shift work cannot be eliminated altogether, the blog offers some tips for employers to help manage the issue, including:
  • Regular Rest: Establish at least ten consecutive hours per day of protected time off-duty in order for workers to obtain seven to eight hours of sleep.
  • Rest Breaks:Frequent brief rest breaks (e.g., every one to two hours) during demanding work are more effective against fatigue than a few longer breaks. Allow longer breaks for meals.
  • Shift Lengths: Five eight-hour shifts or four ten-hour shifts per week are usually tolerable. Depending on the workload, twelve-hour days may be tolerable with more frequent interspersed rest days. Shorter shifts (e.g., eight hours), during the evening and night, are better tolerated than longer shifts.
For more information, including tips for employees, read the entire blog. Also, read the companion blog, which discusses sleep and safety issues in specific industries.

Save on New Releases in April
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Take this opportunity to update your training library with the following courses:
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Volume 10, Number 8
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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.

Copyright © 2012 Coastal Training Technologies Corp. All rights reserved. The DuPont Oval Logo, DuPont™,The miracles of science™ and all products denoted with ® or ™ are registered trademarks or trademarks of E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company or its affiliates.

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