OSHA Quick Takes – October 2009

In This Issue

OSHA issues proposed rule to adopt Globally Harmonized Hazard Communication System

OSHA published a proposed rule Sept. 30 to align the Hazard Communication Standard with provisions of the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals. See the fact sheet and Sept. 30 Federal Register notice for details.

Recordkeeping is focus of new National Emphasis Program

OSHA launched a National Emphasis Program on recordkeeping to determine the accuracy of injury and illness data recorded by employers. The NEP involves inspecting occupational injury and illness records prepared by businesses and enforcing regulatory requirements when employers are found to be under-recording injuries and illnesses. See the directive for more information.

OSHA revises enforcement policies for fall protection during steel erection

OSHA revised the steel erection compliance directive for the agency’s Steel Erection Standard to change two enforcement policies related to tripping hazards and installation of nets or floors during steel erection. Visit the directive for more information on these policy changes.

OSHA awards more than $6.8 million in safety and health training grants

OSHA awarded more than $6.8 million in grants for safety and health training and educational programs to 30 recipients, including labor unions, employer associations, colleges and universities, and other nonprofit organizations. The Susan Harwood Training Grants support workplace safety and health programs that educate workers in industries with high hazard and fatality rates, workers with limited English proficiency, hard-to-reach workers and supervisors, and small business employers. These grants will support training programs addressing topics such as crane safety, fall protection, combustible dust, and emergency preparedness and response (pandemic influenza).

NIOSH offers guidance on controlling silica exposure

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, the federal research agency for workplace safety and health, recently published guidance for reducing exposure to crystalline silica dust during construction activities. The guidance suggests using a water-spray attachment to suppress dust when operating construction equipment such as a jackhammer. Silica is known to cause the lung disease silicosis. Visit NIOSH’s Web site for more information.

Free safety training video for temporary workers raises workplace safety awareness

Temporary workers could benefit from a new video that provides occupational safety and health training. The video includes a general safety orientation and six modules focusing on indentifying hazards at construction, landscaping, manufacturing and food distribution sites, warehouses and offices. It is a product of an alliance among OSHA’s Columbus, Ohio, Area Office, the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation, OSHA On-site Consultation, Staffmart, and the Ohio Staffing and Search Association.

Education centers host training to enhance workplace safety and health

Material safety data sheets are the focus of training being offered by the National Safety Education Center, an OSHA Training Institute Education Center. The training will be held Oct. 20 at Northern Illinois University in Naperville, Ill. To register, visit NIU’s Web site or call 800-656-5317. The University of South Florida OTIEC is offering the #5602 Update for Disaster Site Worker Train-the-Trainer Course Oct. 24 at the United Safety Council in Orlando, Fla. Register online through the USFOTIEC’s Web site.

Pennsylvania Governor’s Occupational Safety and Health Conference slated for this month

The 83rd Annual Governor’s Occupational Safety and Health Conference will be held Oct. 19-20 at the Hershey, Pa., Lodge and Convention Center. Outstanding employers will be presented with the 2009 Governor’s Award for Safety Excellence. The conference features workshops designed to educate employers and employees on current workplace issues. Jordan Barab, acting assistant secretary of labor for OSHA, will provide a keynote speech Oct. 20. For more information, visit the conference Web site.

OSHA, NIOSH and Roadway Work Zone Safety and Health Partners renew alliance

Preventing exposures to roadway work zone safety and health hazards is the goal of an alliance renewed among OSHA, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health and the Roadway Work Zone Safety and Health Partners.

QuickTips on fire safety

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ preliminary data, fires and explosions accounted for three percent of fatal occupational injuries in 2008. OSHA is reminding employers about its resources to help ensure that workers remain safe on the job and not become a fire victim. OSHA’s safety and health topics page on fire safety offers information to help prevent fire-related workplace injuries and fatalities. Look for more fire safety resources on OSHA’s publications page. See your next issue for more workplace safety and health QuickTips.

Department of Labor news and job openings

For more Department of Labor news, see DOL’s electronic newsletter. Are you interested in a career with DOL? The department has job opportunities throughout the country such as an opening in OSHA for an industrial hygienist.

Editor: Elaine Fraser, OSHA Office of Communications, 202-693-1999
For more information on occupational safety and health, visit OSHA’s Web site.
Visit OSHA’s “QuickTakes” page to view previous issues.

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