About Dan McLean

Dan McLean is a senior content marketing manager for Intelex Technologies in Toronto, specializing in environment, health and safety (EHS) topics. He has been a journalist, market researcher, executive communications specialist and content marketer over his 30-plus year career in information technology.

Batteries and Charging Stations Stall the Future of Electric Vehicles

A million chargers for electric vehicles or EVs will be needed along U.S. roadways by 2035, when automakers shift away from manufacturing internal combustion engine passenger vehicles.

Growing popularity and excitement around electric-powered vehicles or EVs point to a major shift for future transportation across the United States. But the road ahead will be challenging.

Much of the world’s environmental future is depending on EVs to reduce the demand for millions of barrels of oil and to help the world meet targets for CO2 emission reductions to minimize the impact of climate change. But a recent panel at the EHS Today Safety Leadership Conference in Cleveland, Ohio revealed roadblocks to the broad acceptance and use of EVs in the U.S. The panel brought together representatives from EV component manufacturers who, while raving about the tremendous business opportunities as the market shifts to EVs, also recognize there’s still much work still … Read more...

Great Ideas to Ignite Your Organization’s EHS Passion

Seasoned safety pros and newly-appointed novices can benefit from these great tips for becoming a better EHS leader.

William Gibson, a safety specialist for Ohio-based Del-Co Water Company Inc., admits he’s far from being the most seasoned environment, health and safety (EHS) professional. But he is passionate about people and a keen observer who has taken the best ideas from safety veterans he’s encountered and applied those learnings to his own professional journey.

Gibson says he stepped out of his comfort zone to become a safety manager in 2017 when his company called out for someone to manage safety for the growing organization. During a recent presentation at the EHS Today Safety Leadership Conference, he shared many of the great lessons learned during his relatively short five-year career as an EHS professional and outlined what he believes are the building blocks of a great safety program and the key elements … Read more...

ESG’s Growing Importance Will Draw Upon EHS Leadership

Survey results show intrinsic links between the two practices of ESG and EHS with both areas sharing many common concerns and similar objectives.

The role played by environment, health and safety (EHS) in the development and execution of environmental social and governance (ESG) strategies may depend on who you ask.

A recent Safety + Health Magazine webinar highlighted 2022 research from Vance and Bourne conducted on behalf of Intelex and shed light on how EHS and ESG leadership professionals are dealing with their evolving mutual challenges. The resulting report – Big Ambitions. Complex Data. Limited Visibility – analyzes a survey of 450 professionals who occupy EHS and ESG leadership roles in North American public and private organizations representing 17 business sectors. 

Survey results show intrinsic links between the two practices with both areas sharing many common concerns and similar objectives. During the webinar it was revealed that a vast majority … Read more...

Research Reveals Collection and Quality as Top EHS and ESG Data Challenges

Organizations are challenged in their efforts to gather EHS and ESG data and poor data quality hinders their ability to improve EHS and ESG performance.

The ability to collect data and be assured it is of high-quality are essential to environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) reporting and compliance success, according to speakers at a webinar outlining recent North American ESG and environment, health and safety (EHS) research.

Traditional and ad hoc ways of collecting ESG and EHS data are not enough, according to one speaker. Virginia Hoekenga, deputy director for the National Association for Environmental Managers (NAEM), says companies must move from Excel [spreadsheets] and paper approaches to systemic and holistic management of ESG and EHS using information technology and digital systems.  

Hoekenga was speaking during a presentation of 2022 research from Vance and Bourne conducted on behalf of Intelex that explores how EHS and ESG professionals are dealing … Read more...

Skilled and Experienced or a Proven Leader – What Type of Safety Manager Would You Hire?

Here’s one professional who says a true safety leader shows commitment to excellence, a strong work ethic and personal accountability. Skill and experience are things you can teach.

When he was hired 12 years ago, Bill D’Amico wasn’t what most might have considered the predictable and obvious choice as global director of safety and health for pipe-joint manufacturer Victaulic Company of Pennsylvania.

But a 2010 fatality at a Victaulic foundry became a defining event and may have prompted company executives to think differently. Never again, ownership vowed, and was determined to recruit a safety leader who could radically improve safety performance and safety culture. Enter D’Amico.   

“I had zero safety experience, so why in god’s name would a global company of 5,000 people that just had a fatality hire someone who didn’t know a damn thing about safety or foundries,” he said, during an October panel discussion at the … Read more...

Close Calls and Near Misses Target a Safety Improvement Bullseye

By tracking and analyzing safety close calls and near misses today, organizations are better able to reduce tomorrow’s incidents that might cause injuries as a result of workplace hazards.

American industrial safety pioneer Herbert Heinrich long ago did the math regarding the importance of reporting and tracking of near-miss and close-call incidents. By his calculation, every workplace injury is preceded by up to 29 other minor injuries that may have required first aid and perhaps as many as 300 near-miss incidents where someone narrowly missed injury.   

Reporting, tracking and learning from close calls and near misses – those instances when someone was almost injured, machinery was nearly damaged, productivity could have been lost or a financial loss might have happened – is key to minimizing potentially catastrophic incidents. Near misses should never be ignored and safety professionals must continually track and analyze them, according to Intelex Vice President and … Read more...

A Thanksgiving Wish for Greater Employee Wellness and Engagement in EHS

Workers need to do their part and workplace safety needs to be “owned” by every employee.

We want to send out a big “thank you” on this Canadian Thanksgiving Day to EHS professionals who champion the cause of worker wellness and workplace safety. Every worker who returns home safely at the end of a shift likely have an EHS professional to thank for proper training, regulatory compliance, employee engagement, safety protocols and maintaining a safe workplace.

It’s a tough job, but most safety specialists embrace the challenge. According to the Board of Canadian Registered Safety Professionals – which sets certification standards for safety professionals in that country – 91.6 percent of them report being “satisfied or very satisfied” with their career. They are a passionate and committed group.

What Matters to Safety Professionals?

Recent Intelex research in North America reveals 57 percent of survey respondents say they consider improving the … Read more...

Know the Warning Signs of Workplace Violence and Bullying

Workplace bullying could be an alert to a potential problem and by acting on it you may avert a workplace violence incident.

Acts of violence in the workplace are the third-leading cause of fatal occupational injuries in the United States. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) reported in 2019 a total of 5,333 workplace injuries, which included 761 cases of intentional injury by another person.

The key to controlling workplace violence, according to Mark Stromme – the EHS senior editor for consultants J.J. Keller & Associates – is identifying and dealing with potential problems before they get out of hand.

“Many threats don’t lead to violence,” he said, during a recent EHS Today webinar on the topic of workplace bullying and violence. “But in almost every incident that does take place, the violent employee did exhibit warning signs and, in some cases, even told … Read more...

Is Your Organization Prepared for an OSHA Inspection?

OSHA expects to complete approximately 31,400 inspections in 2022, rebounding to pre-pandemic levels.

Will you be ready if an Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) inspector comes calling?

In 2021, OSHA conducted 24,333 inspections, including 13,749 unprogrammed inspections, which were prompted by employee complaints, injuries, fatalities and referrals.

During two years of COVID-19, the U.S. regulatory agency performed fewer inspections and most of these were limited to onsite investigations of fatalities, catastrophic accidents and coronavirus issues. The tide turned and OSHA has significantly stepped-up efforts to hold employers accountable for failures to protect workers and keep them safe.

This year has seen more OSHA visits and greater fines imposed. It was recently reported that OSHA expects to complete approximately 31,400 inspections in 2022, rebounding to pre-pandemic levels. OSHA has increased maximum penalties for serious and other-than-serious violations from $13,653 to $14,502 per violation. The maximum penalty for willful or repeated … Read more...

Safety Management Systems Paint a Bigger EHS Performance Picture

Integrated safety management systems offer a centralized means of tapping into safety processes, training status, compliance requirements, hazard data and incidents to provide up-to-the-minute, accurate data that identifies important trends and monitors incidents.

A safety management system or SMS is an environmental, health and safety (EHS) software solution that no organization today should be without. 

Safety management software provides organizational tools to develop, plan, measure, analyze, and control the overall safety performance of a company, and guide decision-making for choosing safety assurance activities.

Pressure on companies to maximize productivity and drive revenue in the face of challenging economic headwinds can lead to a tension between business objectives for growth and profitability and the health and safety practitioner’s priority to mitigate risk and keep people safe.

To deliver against this safety objective, safety management software is used to gain greater visibility into incidents and near misses and to shorten the time … Read more...