A Source for Workplace Safety News and Notes - from ®

March 21, 2013

What's New at - March 20013

You'll find more than 200 new signs at this month. New selections include signs for: gas stations, farms and animal show sites, bucket trucks, retail and office locations, and more. These are highlights:

New Digital Open / Business Hours sign. This bright red OPEN sign with blue outline has nine animation modes to attract attention, is programmable to let you set each day independently, and includes a wireless remote on/off switch to control your sign from across the room.
Customer Service signs accompany your business hours sign to let customers know your policies for reservations and appointments.

Disability Assistance signs let your visitors know where assistance is available, where to park and how to notify you that assistance is needed. They're available in several styles, including reflective parking lot signs, standard signs and even glow-in-the-dark labels.
Spill Clean-Up and Control signs give instructions for bloodborne pathogens, body fluids, spill control materials, chemical spills and more.

March 20, 2013

March 2013 Workplace Safety News and Notes

Browse Fall Protection PPE Signs
OSHA, NIOSH, CPWR Leaders To Present Construction Falls Webinar
On April 10, at 11 a.m. EST, construction safety leaders from OSHA, NIOSH and CPWR will co-moderate a webinar to discuss falls from heights. Participants will learn about resources to plan ahead, provide the right equipment and train workers on ways to prevent falls. The webinar is being held as part of the Safety Pays, Falls Cost campaign to stop construction falls. To register for the free webinar and to learn more about efforts by OSHA, NIOSH and CPWR to protect construction workers from fatal falls, visit the registration page.

Do Workers Learn From Safety Mistakes?
Safety photo from Naval Safety Center A recent safety study determined that accidents typically do not result in changed behavior, and the same type of accident can happen again. The article, published in the March issue of International Journal of Human Factors and Ergonomics, says industrial and workplace accidents rarely have a positive effect within an organization, but they do represent a potential opportunity to learn about risks. "To learn from accident experiences, organizations must create mechanisms to foster knowledge from the onset and to elicit changes based on that information," says the author. The study also identifies three common barriers that prevent accident information througout an organization. Read the article abstract here.

Supreme Court Ruling Could Impact OSHA Records Citations
A recent ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court means that employers “should not accept an OSHA citation alleging violations more than six months old,” according to two lawyers

Safety Tip: Working with Electricity

Browse Electrical Safety Signs
Electrical hazards cause more than 300 deaths and 4,000 injuries in the workplace each year, ranking sixth among all causes of work-related deaths in the United States. By some estimates, a worker is injured severely enough to require time off work every 30 minutes, due to electrical injuries. Here are some tips from OSHA and Electrical Safety Foundation International to help prevent electrical accidents in your workplace.
  • Identify all possible energy sources that could pose on-the-job hazards.
  • Never assume equipment or systems are de-energized. Always test before you touch. And remember, in some cases turning power off may cause other hazards.
  • Understand the construction and operation of electrical equipment and the hazards involved.

What Workers Need to Know About Eye Safety

Browse Eye PPE Safety Signs
When we think about debilitating injuries from industrial accidents, we tend to focus on damage to extremities or lost limbs. But every day, nearly a thousand American workers suffer some form of eye injury. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, those injuries create a financial burden of more than $300 million annually – not just in medical costs, but in workers’ compensation and production time that is lost. And what about quality of life?

No industry is immune when it comes to the potential for eye injuries, although some workplaces have more inherently hazardous tasks. That’s why it’s important to consider potential eye hazards when conducting a hazard analysis of every site and task, and to recognize the correct type of personal protective equipment (PPE) for each task.

The safety experts at Safety Management Group have prepared a helpful article that identifies the five primary hazards that can lead to eye injuries: Impacts, Heat, Chemicals, Dust and Radiation. They then address the best ways for workers to protect themselves.

March 14, 2013

1 Million Hours Without a Lost-Time Accident - In a Foundry?!

Foundries and machine shops are notorious for being dangerous places, but one Indiana foundry is challenging that perception. On March 1, Bremen Castings recorded one million man hours without a lost time accident, and the company credits employee accountability for the milestone.

"We've implemented strategies and procedures to make sure that each and every employee is accountable for each others'  safety while at work," says Bremen President JB Brown. "We require all employees to file 'near miss' reports if they notice something is amiss. For example, if a cable is in the way or there is a slippery step, the employee is responsible for moving it and filing a report to inform upper management of the issue."

March 12, 2013 Customer Comments - March 2013

Here's what customers are saying this month:

Website was unusually was quick and easy!
Bob W., 29 Mar 2013

Quick, fast and plenty of options. Even customization was a breeze.
John R. - MO, 29 Mar 2013

Very very easy process to check out!! Gotta love it when your job is to purchase thousands of products every day!!  Thanks for making it user friendly!
Jill A.,28 Mar 2013 is always fast, easy and accurate. I don't see how sign ordering could be any easier.
Jeff E., 28 Mar 2013

Easy set up of custom sign design and easy ordering. I especially like that I can use my existing pay-pal account to pay. I received my order very quickly, especially for ordering a custom sign. Great experience.
Brad G. - AR, 28 Mar 2013

March 8, 2013

Top 10 OSHA Fines in February 2013

OSHA reported 21 cases in February, with fines totaling $2.6 million and averaging nearly $124,000 per location. Here's the Top 10 List of individual OSHA fines in February:

Electrical Warning Sign
1. $448,000 - Electrical Violations
  • Cause: Worker electrocuted when the equipment he was working with came in contact with overhead power lines
  • Major Citations: 6 willfuls, including failing to ensure that parts of equipment being operated didn’t come within 10 feet of a power line and exposing workers to electrical shock and electrocution. Company placed into SVEP (Severe Violators Enforcement Program).
2. $309,000 — Whistleblower Violation
  • Cause: Fired worker complained
  • Major Citations: Company allegedly fired railroad conductor in retaliation for reporting injury suffered by train engineer in violation of whistleblower laws
Respiratory Safety Sign
3. $274,500 — Respiratory Hazards (Silica Dust), LOTO, Machine Guarding Violations
  • Cause: Regional emphasis program targeting primary metal industries
  • Major Citations: 3 repeats including exposing workers to silica dusts above recommended exposure levels, machine guarding—unguarded conveyor tail pulleys and LOTO—not applying energy isolating devices to equipment while servicing it. Company placed into SVEP

March 1, 2013

Truckers: Properly Secured Cargo Saves Money - and Headaches

Properly securing loads has always been vital for successful trucking operations – and even more so in today’s Compliance Safety Accountability (CSA) environment. Under CSA, violations for improperly secured cargo negatively impact both fleets and drivers.

Effective cargo securement includes a variety of inspection points. Beyond simple unsecured loads, failing to flag a load or improperly marking hazardous materials can result in violations. And drivers transporting hazardous materials can expect to be ticketed for failing to have proper emergency information on hand when it is requested.

Commercial Carrier Journal recently published an article that gives new perspectives on cargo securement and CSA scores. Anyone involved in trucking should read it here.