DuraLabel's Weekly Safety News

Blog Author Angelique Sanders

Weekly safety news. Stay in touch with regulations from OSHA, NFPA, and other safety codes. Find out about other companies' best and worst practices. We scour the internet to provide you with helpful training resources and the latest safety information.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Safety News Briefs - Serious Workplace Injuries Vary By State

A regular news feature summarizing workplace safety related news.

We scan newspapers, magazines and the internet for safety news that isn't being reported elsewhere. The following are links to safety-related news and articles that came out during the past week. If you have safety news, or safety tips, send them to: duralabelpro@gmail.com.

California Power Plant Implosion Goes Wrong

CalOSHA is investigating the demolition of a California power plant in which an implosion, designed to demolish two boiler structures, resulted in several injuries.  The implosion sent debris flying well beyond the established safety zone. The web site for Backersfield NOW reports that:

"The Saturday morning planned implosion of the Kern Power Plant off Rosedale Highway and Coffee Road sent shrapnel flying more than 1,000 feet to the east and west, well beyond the cordoned safety zone. A 44-year-old man suffered severe leg injuries. Police initially reported one leg was amputated, but family members of Jerry Wood said Monday that he had all his limbs and remained in critical condition."

Read the story and watch the video here.

Study Reports Serious Workplace Injuries Vary By State

A study conducted by Allsup, a private Social Security disability claims services company, found that rates of serious workplace injury vary significantly between states—even for workers in the same industries.. In this study, Allsup used data provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics to compare serious workplace injury rates across states and within industries.

An article in the Claims Journal (click here to read) summaries the results of the study. The article reports that:

The report opens with a chart and map that show the differing injury rates between states. The states with the highest rate of workplace injuries that involve days of job transfer or restriction are:

  1. Maine – 1.4 injury or illness cases with job transfer or restriction per 100 workers
  2. Indiana – 1.1
  3. California – 1.0
  4. Connecticut, Kansas, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Wisconsin – 0.9
  5. Alabama, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee and Washington – 0.8
For comparison, last week the Houston Chronicle published a list of the sixteen most dangerous jobs in America, based on BLS statistics:

Read the Houston Chronicle article.

Bill Would Make Massachusetts State Workplaces Subject to OSHA Standards

This report comes from the Digital Journal (click here to read). They report that:

"In Massachusetts, there is a notable legal loophole that means that some workers may find themselves in an unsafe workplace. Although OSHA standards cover private employers and Massachusetts law mandates safety standards for municipal employees, neither law applies to state workers - including those who work on the state's highways. A new bill, recently introduced in the state legislature, would give state workers the same workplace protections that are given to municipal and private sector employees."

Opponents of the bill argue that requiring state workplaces to meet OSHA standards would substantially increase costs.

OSHA Withdraws A Proposal To Amend The On-site Consultation Program

OSHA announced last week that they have withdrawn a proposed change to the federally-funded On-site Consultation Program. OSHA is withdrawing this rule change based on stakeholder concerns that the proposed changes would discourage employers from participating in the program.

The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for 29 CFR 1908, Consultation Agreement provided clarification of the length of the exemption period provided to "recognized" sites that have been removed from OSHA's programmed inspection schedule and the initiation of certain unprogrammed inspections at both sites that have achieved recognition and sites undergoing a consultation visit.

See the Federal Register notice on the withdrawal of proposed rule.

The On-site Consultation Program offers free and confidential safety and health advice to small- and medium-sized businesses, with priority given to high-hazard worksites. Employers who successfully complete a comprehensive on-site consultation visit, correct all hazards identified during the visit and implement an ongoing safety and health program to identify and correct workplace hazards may achieve status in OSHA's Safety and Health Recognition Program (SHARP). Exemplary employers who receive SHARP status receive an exemption from OSHA's programmed inspection schedule during a specified period.

Photo by skinnylawyer

New FAA Safety Rules Means Fewer Planes Flying

New workplace safety rules for airline pilots went into effect this month, but they will mean fewer pilots will have enough hours to fly as co-pilots, and over the next couple years airlines may not have enough pilots to fly all of the routes they currently fly.  The pilots, pilots union, and the airlines all opposed the new rules.

The story in Aviation Pro magazines states:

"Tougher commercial pilot training rules that took effect this month will make America's skies safer, federal officials say, but aviation experts and veteran pilots argue that the costly changes are overreaching, off-target and creating crew shortages, all while doing little to improve safety."

Read the complete story here.

Statistics Show Manufacturing Workplace Deaths Are Uncommon

What do you think about this article that appears on Wane.com (News Channel 15), a news source for Ft. Wayne, Indiana?

It reports that the likelihood of being killed in a manufacturing related fatality is a 0.003% chance -- essentially zero, so we don't needed to be concerned about workplace fatalities in manufacturing. Can we get to zero deaths in the workplace? Or will there always be fatal accidents no matter how many safety precautions are taken?  Does what the article states make sense?

Read the Ft. Wayne story here.

Use the "Add Your Comments" link below to add your comments.

Related past posts:
Safety News Briefs - Five Safety Questions Your CEO Needs To Ask
Safety News Briefs - CSB May "Tell Off" OSHA
Safety News Briefs - Misconceptions About Electrical Safety

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