All posts by Colin Gallaway

Workplace Safety Resolutions for the New Year

New Year Safety Resolutions
Businesses make New Year's resolutions, too. Below are some practical ideas that can add value to your safety program in 2016. Eliminate Existing Hazards. Anticipate hazards and eliminate or control them before they cause harm. Identify potential fire, chemical, electrical, and other hazards throughout your facility and take action to eliminate these risks. Go through workstations, machinery, personal protection equipment, labeling, and material storage and handling protocols and look for any Read more [...]

A Handy Guide to OSHA’s New HazCom Standard

HAZCOM_Pictograms
In 2012, OSHA revised the Hazard Communication Standard to be consistent with the United Nations’ Globally Harmonized System (GHS) of classification and labeling of chemicals. The GHS is an international approach to hazard communication that provides specific criteria for classification of chemical hazards and a standardized approach to label elements and safety data sheets. Since the United States is both a major importer and exporter of chemicals, American workers often see labels and safety Read more [...]

OSHA Fines Are Going Up, Up, Up

OSHA Penalties Money
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is authorized to increase penalties for the first time in 25 years,  according to part of the federal budget deal signed into law earlier this week. And it's not just a small increase - OSHA's penalties are expected to rise by nearly 80 percent. Since 1990, OSHA’s penalties have looked the same. Now, under the new Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015, those numbers will rise quite a bit. Willful Violation = Minimum of approximately $8,912; Read more [...]

Highlights from NSC 2015 Congress & Expo

NSC 2015
The National Safety Council hosted its 2015 NSC Congress & Expo in Atlanta Sept. 26 to Oct. 2. Thousands of safety professionals gathered in Atlanta at the world's largest safety event to to gather knowledge and the tools needed to influence safety in the workplace. Companies from around the world participated in the product showcase, competing for a "best-in-show" honor. Capital Safety  and its new parent company, 3M had some of the busiest booths in the expo. Capital Safety gave daily demos Read more [...]

OSHA’s Top 10 Violations of 2015 Announced

top osha violations 2015
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has announced the preliminary top 10 most frequently cited workplace safety violations for 2015. This list was presented today during the Natioanl Safety Council Congress & Expo, the world's largest gathering for safety, health, and environmental professionals. Fall Protection (1926.501) is once again OSHA’s most frequently cited standard, making this the fifth year in a row that it has topped the list. Although this is just a Read more [...]

New OSHA Interactive Map Shows Top Fines by State

osha map
Want to know which employers are the top OSHA offenders? With one click, you can see the top health and safety violations for any state with OSHA's new interactive tool. Announced last week, the new webpage features a map which lists every OSHA enforcement case with a penalty above $40,000 in 2015. One click on a state brings up a list of violations, detailing the name of the employer cited, the city in which it took place, the penalty amount, and the date the penalty was issued. Visitors can Read more [...]

Exposure Limits Carry Risks for Workers

toxic danger sign
OSHA's current permissible exposure limits (PEL) for hazardous chemicals are out of date, and they’re not adequate for ensuring protection of worker health. OSHA agrees. Most of OSHA’s PELs were issued shortly after adoption of the Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Act in 1970, and 95% of them have not been updated since that time. And, although there are thousands of chemicals used every day by American workers, OSHA has exposure limits for fewer than 500. As a result, workers are being Read more [...]

Protecting Against the MERS Virus Outbreak

3M 8210 N95
Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), which surfaced in Saudi Arabia in 2012, is not well-understood. Because the virus is still fairly new, doctors and scientists do not know the exact source or mode of its transmission. Currently, there is no known cure or vaccine to protect against the virus. Since May 2015, the South Korea has been investigating an outbreak of MERS. It is the largest known outbreak of MERS outside the Middle East. Most people infected with MERS-CoV developed severe acute Read more [...]

Infographic: Protecting Workers From Heat Stress

heat stress featured image
As summer approaches and temperatures rise, workers become more at risk for developing heat stress. Heat stress can result in heat stroke, heat exhaustion, heat cramps, heat rashes, and in severe cases can be deadly. Dozens of workers die every year because of working in the heat, OSHA says. Most of those deaths take place in the first few days of working in the heat, which makes it especially important for employers to allow workers to build up gradual tolerance to the conditions. NIOSH also Read more [...]

5 Useful Workplace Safety Apps

safety app
It's no surprise that mobile apps are becoming a popular - and convenient - tool for workplace health and safety. It would be hard to find someone who doesn't own a smart phone or tablet in the digital age of today. Why not take advantage of that technology and even improve productivity in the workplace? Here's a list of 5 free (or low cost) safety apps: iAuditor (Free for iPhone, iPad, Android) -  This is probably most popular safety app among safety professionals. You can create custom Read more [...]