OSHA partnership with FRA, Halle Berry’s on-set injury, Denmark’s wind power ambitions and more on EHS This Week

On this week’s edition of EHS This Week:

  • OSHA’s new alliance with the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) tackles whistleblower protection.
  • The EPA puts some serious cash towards water quality.
  • Denmark lives up to its reputation for excellence in renewable energy with some staggering numbers.

Remember to write us with your suggestions, questions and comments at paul@ehsthisweek.com. Also, if you are an industry expert and ever want to take part in the program, we’d love to have you. 

Until next week, enjoy the program!

[audio: old/mp3/EHS THis Week July 20.mp3]…

How to Deal with Asbestos Exposure in your Workplace – Advice for Industrial Building Owners

{Part three of a three-part series}

Building owners play one of the primary roles in preventing asbestos exposure at the workplace. When constructing a building – or leasing out an existing facility that contains asbestos – building owners can take several steps that ensure safety on the premesis.

Only purchase asbestos-free building materials for renovations or new construction. Despite its known health hazards, asbestos materials are still being produced. In 2004, the United States used more than 3,000 metric tons of asbestos for roofing products, coatings and compounds and other industrial applications. Facility managers must specify that they want asbestos-free materials when placing or approving orders for building materials. Be sure to verify manufacturer’s certifications before making the purchase.

Schedule asbestos surveys for your properties. To best protect the workers in the building, owners must schedule a comprehensive building survey from a licensed asbestos abatement company. This survey will indicate … Read more...

How to Deal with Asbestos Exposure in Your Workplace: Advice for Managers

{Part two of a three-part series}

Industrial mangers are faced with hundreds of responsibilities each day. Ensuring worker safety should be at the top of their priority list – especially when it comes to asbestos.

Do you work in management at a construction site or industrial occupation? Here’s what you can do to promote asbestos safety:

Conduct daily or periodic monitoring. Unless a manager can demonstrate that asbestos exposure at the worksite will remain below the permissible limit, they are required to perform daily monitoring for worksites where asbestos-containing materials are directly involved. Managers must perform periodic monitoring (at intervals determined by state legislature) for workers who perform other industrial operations that pose a risk for asbestos exposure.

Create controlled zones. Regulated areas must be created and thoroughly enforced wherever asbestos work is performed. Mangers must prohibit workers from entering without appropriate licensure or respiratory protection. Managers must also keep … Read more...

How to deal with asbestos exposure in your workplace: advice for industrial workers

At one point, more than 75 different industries exposed workers to asbestos. Even though these industries have been made safer by regulations from the National Institute for Occupational Health and Safety, many workers still come in contact with asbestos products that remain at their jobsites.

Although most industrial employees face some form of asbestos exposure risks during their career, employees most at risk for asbestos exposure include:

  • Construction workers.
  • HVAC mechanics.
  • Electricians.
  • Chemical plant workers.

Do you work in one of these industrial occupations where asbestos exposure is still a risk? The following tips can help reduce the risk of you or your coworkers being exposed to asbestos and becoming at risk for an asbestos-causing cancer. 

Know which materials pose an asbestos threat – and know how to handle them. More than 3,000 industrial products were once made with asbestos. Many of these are still present in jobsites. Tiles, pipes, … Read more...

Sweeping OHS Bill passes in Ontario

After months of debate and consultation, Bill 160 has passed in Ontario, Canada after a 79-0 vote in the provincial assembly late last week. The Occupational Health and Safety Statute Law Amendment Act will take full effect when it achieves Royal Assent, as soon as next month.

The Act will create the position of a provincial Chief Prevention Officer as well as a Prevention Council to work with the Ministry of Labour to develop a comprehensive occupational health and safety strategy and determine training standards.

The act will affect almost all businesses across the province, so make sure you are up to speed with all the bill’s implications by checking out OHS Insider’s very handy and comprehensive Ontario OHS Reform Blog, which features detailed information on the nuances on Bill 160.

As the blog notes, establishing provincewide training standards will be central to the Act after it becomes law.… Read more...

Picturing Safety: OSHA celebrates 40 years with photo contest

In celebration of 40 years of making workplaces safer, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has launched a new photo contest to boost awareness of workplace safety issues.

Anyone with a camera is invited to take a photo of a scenario or setting they believe represents an image of occupational health and safety (OHS) and submit it to OSHA. The administration is looking for outstanding portrayals of occupational health and safety in terms of artistic value, and capacity to inspire conversations on OHS issues. Other judging criteria include: the clarity and quality of the photo; the inclusion of worker, employer or workplace imagery; originality; and the suitability of the image for print in OSHA publications. The winners will be determined by a panel of expert judges with backgrounds in photography and labour issues.

In addition to being featured on OSHA’s website, first, second and third-place photographs will be framed … Read more...