A Source for Workplace Safety News and Notes - from ®

July 26, 2010

July Workplace Safety News and Notes

U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) board approves 18 urgent recommendations to OSHA, NFPA and others intended to prevent fires and explosions caused when fuel gas is used to clean or purge gas pipes (typically during facility construction and maintenance). The recommendations result from extensive CSB investigations into two recent explosions that killed 10 workers and injured many more. Read the recommendation (pdf) or Browse gas line and cylinder safety signs here.
EPA is providing additional time for renovation firms and workers to obtain lead training and certifications before enforcing new firm certification and individual renovator requirements. Read the memo here (pdf) or view a FAQ document (pdf) here.

Hundreds participate in online Combustible Dust meeting. OSHA held its first virtual stakeholder meeting June 28 to seek input about combustible dust workplace hazards. More than 400 people participated in the live event and more than 100 others read the archived chat online since then. During the one-hour event, OSHA published 160 comments to the chat window and provided 58 responses. Read a transcript here.

The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration is soliciting applications for $2.75 million in Susan Harwood Targeted Topic Training Grants to provide training and education programs on safety and health for workers and their employers. For fiscal year 2010, the program offers 28 targeted topic areas including crane safety, combustible dust, maritime, oil and gas, and eye safety. Applications are due Aug. 6. Learn more here.

NIOSH publishes new guide on safe handling of veterinary drugs. Veterinary healthcare employees working may face health risks from working with hazardous medications, whether they work with companion animals or large or exotic animals. NIOSH recommends establishing a program to provide appropriate protective measures for veterinary healthcare workers exposed to hazardous drugs. Learn more here or view a list of NIOSH conferences here.

FDA authorizes new test to detect H1N1 infection. A test developed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to diagnose human infections with the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus has been authorized for use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The test will help ensure accuracy of influenza testing results among the different qualified laboratories that conduct influenza subtype testing in the United States and abroad. The test panel and diagnostic system can provide results within four hours. Learn more here.

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has issued a safety alert recommending that residential fire sprinkler systems containing antifreeze should be drained and the antifreeze replaced with water. The alert follows a research study and an initial set of fire tests conducted after a sprinkler with a high concentration of antifreeze deployed. The fire resulted in a single fatality and serious injury to another person. Read NFPA's news release.

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