Worker Safety Oversight Is Shared Between OSHA & Hawaii

The Governor of Hawaii, Neil Abercrombie and OSHA Regional Administrator, Ken Nishiyama Atha signed an agreement to temporarily share oversight for worker safety and health in the state. This was due to a need to bridge a gap in training and staff capacity and a 2010 Federal Annual Monitoring and Evaluation report issued by OSHA that questioned the state’s program. The agreement lists additional mandatory training opportunities for HIOSHA staff, temporary federal jurisdiction over some industries, and other elements aimed at returning the Hawaii state plan program to compliance with federal standards.

For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov/dcsp/osp/stateprogs/hawaii.html.

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New OSHA Training Institute Education Centers Are Announced

OSHA has recently announced the renewal of 24 existing OSHA Training Institute (OTI) Education Centers, along with four new ones. The purpose of the current training centers is to provide training courses on OSHA standards and occupational safety and health issues, and additional outlets for safety and health training with the new ones.

The OTI Education Centers program was created in 1992 and have been providing nationwide training to private sectors and federal personnel from agencies outside of OSHA. By the end of fiscal year 2012, more than 40,000 people were trained through this training.

The OSHA Outreach Training Program is assisted by the OTI Education Centers and serve as the principal provider of Outreach Training Program trainer courses including all train-the-trainer topic areas that certifies them to teach 10-hour or 30-hour courses. During fiscal years from 2010 to 2012, more than two million people were trained through this program.

“This year, we have seen record numbers of requests for occupational safety and health training from the private sector and federal agency personnel,” said Dr. David Michaels, assistant secretary of labor for occupational safety and health. “The renewal of OTI’s Education Centers and the addition of four new centers will help OSHA to meet this demand and deliver life-saving training to our country’s employers and workers.”

It’s important to note that the OTI Education Centers courses are not mandatory by OSHA and does not meet training requirements for any OSHA standards. OSHA doesn’t provide funding to the OTI Education Centers, as each location supports its training through tuition and fee structures.

To view the list of the current and new OTI Education Centers, visit http://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=NEWS_RELEASES&p_id=23058.

For more information on OSHA 10-hour general industry or construction certification, call us at 407-353-8165 or visit us at https://www.safetylinks.net/index.php/training/osha-msha-courses.

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Pipeline Safety Guidelines Update Released by the DOT

In efforts to improve pipeline safety issues caused by recent disasters and report finding to the public, the U.S. Department of Transportation has recently launched a new webpage, Pipeline Safety Update, which includes guidelines on regulations, safety issues, and stakeholder information in it.

Links to programs such as the National Pipeline Mapping System, a pipeline safety page with checklists, links, One-Call Centers and 811 are listed on the page that will be useful for reference before any excavation.

Any input or documents that will help inform the stakeholder communities are welcomed when sent via email at pipelineforum@dot.gov.

To view the page, visit HERE.

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Remembering 9/11

We dedicate this day to all the vicitims, our troops, rescue teams and their families affected  by this tragedy eleven years ago.

 

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OSHA’s Enforcement Measures in Residential Construction Extended Through December 15

OSHA has recently announced that their temporary enforcement measures in residential construction will be extended for three more months, until December 15, 2012.

These measures include:

  • Priority free onsite compliance assistance;
  • Penalty reductions;
  • Extended abatement dates;
  • Measures to ensure consistency; and
  • Increased outreach.

As part of their efforts, OSHA has been actively working closely with the industry. Since October of last year, their On-Site Consultation Projects completed more than 2,500 onsite visits, conducted 925 training sessions, and delivered 438 presentations regarding residential construction. They also conducted more than 800 outreach activities on the directive. Another method they use to assist companies and organizations is by providing information of the industry on their website. They will continue to assist with educational and training materials to help facilitate employers with compliance.

All this is available in their webpage here and their Fall Prevention Campaign.

For more information on our Residential Fall Protection training, give us a call at 407-353-8165 or visit us here https://www.safetylinks.net/index.php/training/construction-safety-courses/residential-fall-protection.

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Removal Criteria from the Severe Violator Enforcement Program Is Released

OSHA’s Severe Violator Enforcement Program (SVEP), which lists companies and organizations as employers who demonstrate indifference to OSHA regulations, has published criteria that will allow them to be removed from the list. This criteria was issued on August 16 and the employer on it may be considered for removal after the following:

  1. A period of three years from the date of the final disposition of the SVEP inspection citation items including: including to contest, settlement agreement, review commission final order, or court of appeals decision.
  2. All affirmed violations have been abated, all final penalties have been paid, the employer has abided by and completed all settlement provision, and has not received any additional serious citations related to the hazards identified in the SVEP inspection at the initial establishment or at any related establishments.

For more information regarding the SVEP, visit http://s.dol.gov/VD.

For safety consulting, contact us at info@safetylinks.net

 

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Direct Final Rule for Cranes And Derricks Issued by OSHA

Last week, OSHA issued a direct final rule and notice of proposed rulemaking of the August 2010 cranes and derricks in construction standard to demolition work and underground construction with the goal to protect workers from hazards associated with hoisting equipment used during construction activities.

This rule is also to apply to underground construction and demolition that are already being used by other construction sectors, and will streamline OSHA’s standards by eliminating the separate cranes and derricks standard currently used for underground and demolition work. The rulemaking also corrects several errors introduced in the 2010 rulemaking to make it easier for workers and employers to understand and implement these standards.

The direct final rule will become effective November 15, 2012, unless OSHA receives a significant adverse comment by September 17. If the agency receives significant adverse comments, the accompanying notice of proposed rulemaking will allow the agency to continue the notice-and-comment component of the rulemaking by withdrawing the direct final rule.

To submit comments, visit: http://www.regulations.gov, the Federal eRulemaking Portal. Submissions may also be sent via faxor mail. See the Federal Register notice for details. Comments must be submitted by September 17.

 

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New “Tool Shed” Directive by OSHA for Marine Hazards Released

OSHA has released a newly revised directive as guidance for the marine cargo handling industry. The enforcement is aimed at eliminating their workplace hazards and includes requirements on updated personal protective equipment (PPE) and the safe operation of Vertical Tandem Lifts (VTL).

Some of the updates in the document include:

  • clarification that PPE that employers must provide at no cost to their workers, when employers must pay for replacement PPE, and when employers are not required to pay for PPE;
  • information and guidance on VTLs, both on the regulations and the recent court ruling on a challenge by industry to those regulations;
  • changes to the Marine Terminals and Safety and Health Regulations for Longshoring provisions based on Phase III of the Standards Improvement Project;
  • settlement agreement between the National Grain and Feed Association Inc. and OSHA;
  • updated answers to commonly asked maritime cargo handling questions; and
  • marine cargo handling safety and health information in a Web-based format with electronic links.

In 2010, seven workers died on the job in the marine cargo handling industry and approximately 2,900 suffered of injuries.

The Marine Terminals standards and the Longshoring standards are the two main standards that regulate the industry. To view OSHA’s Marine Industry standards and regulations, visit http://www.osha.gov/dts/maritime/index.html.

To view the directive, visit http://www.osha.gov/OshDoc/Directive_pdf/CPL_02-00-154.pdf.

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New Mine Regulation Now Effective

Mine operators are now required to identify and correct hazardous conditions and violations of any nine health and safety standards due to the new federal mine regulation that went into effect just a couple of days ago. A strong push for the extent of regulation in this area was heavily caused from the reaction of the explosion at the Upper Big Branch mine that killed 29 miners and repeated violations found in accident reports and enforcement data over a five-year period.

“Effective pre-shift, supplemental, on-shift and weekly examinations are the first line of defense to protect miners working in underground coal mines,” says Joseph A. Main, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Mine Safety and Health.

The nine health and safety standards address ventilation, methane, roof control, combustible materials, rock dust, equipment guarding, and other safeguards.

To view the new ruling, visit https://www.federalregister.gov/articles/2012/04/06/2012-8328/examinations-of-work-areas-in-underground-coal-mines-for-violations-of-mandatory-health-or-safety.

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Oil & Natural Gas Industries Boost Their Safety

Oil and Gas Industry

Oil and Gas IndustryAccording to a recent AOPL survey, “spills from crude oil pipelines are down 70% over the last 10 years and spill volumes are down 40%. After an industry integrity management initiative, incidents caused by corrosion are down 73%, equipment failures down 50%, operational errors are down 40% and material and weld failures are down 30%.”

The article below talks about the oil and natural gas industries and how they are focusing on safety and making it their No. 1 priority. As one of the highest regulated industries in the world, they have adopted a list of principles in agreement with the Association of Oil Pipe Liners and the American Petroleum Institute, as a foundation of culture standards to keep improving their safety methods:

  1. Zero incidents: Pipeline operators believe that every incident is preventable and work to that high standard.
  2. Organization-wide commitment: Safety is emphasized at every level of the organization.
  3. A culture of safety: Pipeline operators embrace the need to provide a workplace culture where safety is an enduring value that all employees share.
  4. Continuous improvement: Pipeline operators believe that no matter how safe they already are, they can always improve safety.
  5. Learn from experience: Pipeline operators learn how they can improve safety from their own experiences and by sharing lessons learned industry-wide with other pipeline operators.
  6. Systems for success: Management systems demonstrate that safety efforts are succeeding by measuring performance, tracking changes and confirming improvements.
  7. Employ technology: Operators constantly research and develop new ways to maximize safety.
  8. Communicate with stakeholders: Communicating with the public and stakeholders who value safety, from advocates to the government, is vital to improving safety.

To read the article, visit http://www.jsonline.com/news/opinion/oil-natural-gas-industries-take-steps-to-boost-safety-2f6bm8l-164809126.html.

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