OSHA: Final Recordkeeping Rule Protects Sensitive Employee Information

On January 25th 2019 the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued a final rule, “Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses,” in an effort “to protect worker privacy.” The rule eliminates the requirement for establishments with 250 or more employees to electronically submit information from OSHA Form 300 (Log of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses) and OSHA Form 301 (Injury and Illness Incident Report) to OSHA each year.

In a press release, OSHA notes: “By preventing routine government collection of information that may be quite sensitive, including descriptions of workers’ injuries and body parts affected, OSHA is avoiding the risk that such information might be publicly disclosed under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). This rule will better protect personally identifiable information or data that could be re-identified with a particular worker by removing the requirement for covered employers to submit their information from Forms 300 … Read more...

Tightening Processes is Key to Worker Safety

Variations that exist within system processes may be putting workers on a path to making poor decisions while performing their work and invariably compromising their safety. That’s an assertion made by Scott Gaddis, the Health and Safety Practice Leader for Intelex Technologies and a 25-year veteran of environmental health and safety leadership and management.

It’s important to tighten process methodologies to ensure there’s little room for interpretation by workers that forms bad safety habits. In his recently published Intelex Insight Report, entitled, Unleash a Better Safety Culture by Controlling Process Variability, Gaddis notes that, in many incidents where a worker performs an unsafe act, the decision that often led to err was likely influenced by other uncontrolled variables residing within the work system itself.

Dan Peterson, in his book, Human Error Reduction and Safety Management, writes that “Human error is involved in every accident and there are many reasons … Read more...

Large Corporations Tackle Climate Change, Company Violates Age Policy and More!

On this week’s edition of EHS This Week we’ve got the week’s top stories in environment, health and safety news:

  • Corporate Giants Tackle Climate Change
  • Company Violates Age Policy
  • Erin Brockovich Shines Light on USDA approval of Chickens to China for processing

Remember to write us with your suggestions, questions and comments. 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!

EHS This Week Resources

For more information on the stories and resources mentioned in this week’s podcast, check out the links below.

  • Major U.S. Corporations Teaming up to Fight Climate Change. Click here
  • Company Violates Age Policy. Click here.
[audio: 2015/07/EHSTW-073115.mp3]… Read more...

U.S. Oil Refinery Workers Striking for Safety

The U.S. oil worker strike has entered its second month with just under 7,000 refinery workers now on the picket lines. They come from 15 plants across seven states and are represented by the United Steelworkers (USW) Union, which represents more than 30,000 American oil workers in total.

The strike, which was first called by the USW on January 31 and began on February 1, has evolved into the largest refinery strike in over 35 years. The last strike of this size took place in 1980, when the work stoppage lasted three months. Today, the 15 plants currently striking include 12 refineries that represent about one fifth of the nation’s refining capacity.

Safety Concerns a Key Issue

One of the central focuses of this strike has been the argument that oil companies are perceived by their employees to be prioritizing profits over worker safety. Some of the employees’ biggest concerns … Read more...

National Work Zone Awareness Week (April 7-11, 2014)

This week is National Work Zone Awareness Week, a campaign designed to educate drivers and construction workers alike about the dangers associated with work zones. Local, state and federal transportation officials observe this week in April as this is the start of highway construction season across most of the country.

A Costly Mistake

The theme for 2014 is “Work Zone Speeding: A Costly Mistake.” Indeed, it is a costly mistake, and not just for the workers themselves. In 2012 there were 609 traffic-related fatalities in US work zones, which is 19 more compared to 590 deaths in 2011. However, most work zone fatalities are the drivers and their occupants (usually 85-90%) while the workers and other bystanders, such as pedestrians and cyclists, account for 10-15% of these deaths.

This year’s theme points to the fact that speeding is a major contributing factor of these work zone crashes, and was involved … Read more...