OSHA Quick Takes – August 15, 2009

In This Issue

Agency establishes “watch list” to help strengthen integrity of Outreach Training Program

In an effort to crack down on fraudulent trainers and continue strengthening the integrity of the Outreach Training Program, OSHA has established a “watch list” of those who have had their trainer authorization revoked or suspended. A tighter record control procedure has been implemented to help address failure to comply with program guidelines. OSHA has provided a hotline at 847-297-4810 for individuals to file complaints about fraud and abuse.

“QuickTakes” tops 75,000 subscriber mark

“QuickTakes” e-mail subscriptions have reached 75,000. Now in its eighth year, “QuickTakes” has grown in popularity, and we appreciate our loyal readers. We invite you to share this electronic newsletter with others and encourage them to subscribe.

DOL launches new electronic newsletter

The U.S. Department of Labor has issued a new electronic newsletter to help keep employers and workers abreast of what is happening in all facets of the department. The “DOL News Brief” provides information on Secretary Solis’ speeches, upcoming seminars, grant opportunities, and Labor Department job openings. To subscribe, visit DOL’s Web site.

Forum focuses on pandemic influenza and small business workplace preparedness

Pandemic influenza workplace planning and preparedness is the subject of OSHA’s next small business forum Sept. 30 from 1 to 3 p.m. in the U.S. Labor Department’s Francis Perkins Building auditorium. This forum is part of a small business series that fosters collaboration between the small business community and federal government entities on safety and health management issues. An expert panel, comprised of OSHA, state and county health officials and a small business representative, will discuss the current H1N1 (swine flu) threat, explore preventive measures, and identify resources for small businesses on preparing their workplaces for a pandemic. For more information or to register, contact Charlene Crawford at 202-693-2165 or crawford.charlene@dol.gov.

OSHA grantees offer free training on pandemic flu hazards and SHMS design

West Virginia University Safety and Health Extension, an OSHA Susan Harwood Training Grant Program recipient, is offering healthcare professionals and staff at small hospitals and healthcare facilities a free, four-hour pandemic influenza hazard awareness course Aug. 20 in Hagerstown, Md., and Aug. 21 in Lewes, Del. For more information and to register, visit the University’s Web site or call Jan Della-Giustina at 800-626-4748. Harwood grantee Goodwill Industries is providing free online and in-person training to help organizations design a safety and health management system. Visit Goodwill’s Web site for course details. Participants must be covered by the Occupational Safety and Health Act.

Standup forklift and special purpose particle accelerator hazards are focus of new SHIBs

OSHA has published a Safety and Health Information Bulletin addressing a crushing hazard to standup forklift operators associated with “under-ride” that occurs in a warehouse when an operator backs up too far beneath a storage rack’s horizontal cross bar and protrudes into the operator’s compartment. The SHIB, “Special Purpose Particle Accelerators,” describes OSHA and Nuclear Regulatory Commission requirements to help avoid hazards associated with these devices. Visit OSHA’s Web site for SHIBs on other occupational safety and health issues.

Fourth annual Drug-Free Work Week slated for Oct. 19-25, 2009

A drug-free workplace program is a vital component of a safe workplace. From Oct. 19-25, 2009, the U.S. Department of Labor will stage its annual Drug-Free Work Week, dedicated to communicating the importance of working drug-free. The week is sponsored by DOL’s Working Partners for an Alcohol- and Drug-Free Workplace program, but its true spirit is found at the local level in activities conducted by various organizations and in individual workplaces across the country. To get resources and specific ideas on how your organization can support the week’s activities, visit the Drug-Free Work Week Web site.

Next SGE of the Year award to be presented at VPPPA conference

During the Aug. 24 opening session of the Voluntary Protection Programs Participants’ Association Conference in San Antonio, OSHA’s acting Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Jordan Barab will present the Special Government Employee of the Year award to one of ten nominees who were recommended by the regions. This award recognizes an SGE who exhibits exceptional mentoring, outreach and OSHA support in VPP.

Strategic partnership helps to lower injury and illness rates in construction

An OSHA strategic partnership was formed in April 2007 to promote workplace safety and health at the Interstate 64 reconstruction project in St. Louis. According to its annual report, the partnership met its goals by implementing key strategies. For example, more than 400 workers and managers received 3,000 hours of safety and health training on such topics as lead and silica exposure and fall protection. The average total recordable case incidence rate and average days away from work, job transfer or restriction rate were 57 and 50 percent, respectively, below the 2007 Bureau of Labor Statistics’ national average.

QuickTips for working outdoors in high temperatures

In light of recent very high air temperatures, OSHA is reminding employers and workers about the hazards of heat and humidity and to take the necessary precautions when working outdoors. OSHA’s “Heat Stress” QuickCard (English/Spanish) and “Working Outdoors in Warm Climates” fact sheet offer ways to avoid those hazards and prevent heat-related injuries and deaths.

Turn to your next issue of “QuickTakes” for more QuickTips on occupational safety and health topics.

Editor: Elaine Fraser, OSHA Office of Communications, 202-693-1999
For more information on occupational safety and health, visit OSHA’s Web site.

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