Here's a collection of recent workplace safety news and notes from around the web:
OSHA launches national dialogue on hazardous chemical exposures
OSHA is launching a national dialogue with stakeholders to manage worker exposure to hazardous chemicals in the workplace. The first stage of this dialogue is a request for information on the management of hazardous chemical exposures in the workplace and strategies for updating permissible exposure limits (PELs). Ninety-five percent of OSHA’s current PELs, which cover fewer than 500 chemicals, have not been updated since their adoption in 1971 and they cover a small fraction of the chemicals currently used in the U.S. Some new approaches for which OSHA is seeking public comment include: Streamlined approaches for risk assessment and feasibility analyses; and alternative approaches for managing chemical exposures. Read more here.
New Safety Climate Workbook Available
The Center for Construction Research and Training has released a 10-page workbook, “Strengthening Jobsite Safety Climate: Eight Worksheets to Help You Use and Improve Leading Indicators.” The workbook is designed to help construction managers, safety professionals and hourly craft workers learn leading indicators of safety climate, as well as ideas for strengthening them. The book contains eight worksheets with brief self-assessments and a list of ideas that owners, safety directors and supervisory staff can implement to evaluate and improve their safety climate. Learn more here.
The rudest drivers are in... Idaho?
In a survey seeking to rank the states with the rudest drivers, Idaho earned the dubious honor of being #1. Respondents to the survey by Insure.com said Idaho drivers present a wide variety of rudeness, "Those who are moving so slowly that they’re judged to be rude, and the aggressive drivers who speed around them and flip them off."
The survey of 2,000 licensed drivers across the country found Washington, D.C., the second rudest region, with New York coming in third. Wyoming and Massachusetts round out the top 5. Maine and North Dakota earned the bottom two spots on the list. See the full list here.
OSHA continues regional emphasis program on struck-by accidents in four states
Noting that more than one-third of all incident investigations in four Midwest states involve vehicle-related struck-by fatalities, OSHA has established a Regional Emphasis Program (REP) to help reduce the number of these incidents. Effective Oct. 1, the REP covers OSHA Region 7, which encompasses Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska. In those four states, 36 percent of all OSHA investigations from fiscal year 2011 to 2013 involved vehicle struck-by fatalities. The REP allows OSHA inspectors to evaluate compliance with associated standards when conducting all inspections. The program targets hazards associated with material handling and personnel handling motorized equipment, including powered industrial trucks, cranes and aerial lifts. Read more here.
ISHN hosts safety webinar week November 10-12
Safety pros and anyone else can log in to a series of no-cost safety webinars presented by ISHN. Attendees can view demonstrations, download materials, network and more. Topics include: hand safety, combustible dust, fall protection training, arc flash and gas detection. Get details here.
NIOSH asks, "Can Predictive Analytics Help Reduce Workplace Risk?"
NIOSH has been exploring the potential application of predictive analytics and related approaches to reducing risk of death, injury, and disease from work. Clearly, there is tremendous potential for improved prevention if accurate predictions of injury and disease probability are possible. It seems likely that if injuries can be predicted accurately, they can be prevented. But there are many barriers to employing predictive analytics to improve occupational safety and health. Consulting firms are starting to promote prediction as a way to reduce injury. See what NIOSH has to say about the topic at the NIOSH Science blog.