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Peer inside a company's safety record

Occupational safety and health blogger Jordan Barab reports Working America, the community affiliate of the AFL-CIO, has created "Job Tracker," an Internet search tool that puts workplaces under scrutiny like only the Internet can.

As the site (www.workingamerica.org/jobtracker/) states: "Find out which companies in your area are exporting jobs, endangering workers' health or involved in cases of violations of workers' rights under the National Labor Relations Act. The database contains information on more than 60,000 companies nationwide."

Input a zip code or state and up pops detailed information about companies and their labor practices: OSHA citations (when, for what, how much), layoffs, exporting jobs and violating labor laws. You can learn a company's OSHA injury and illness rate and whether the rates were high enough to warrant a warning letter from OSHA.

For example, by plugging in the zip code "19403" you receive data on 151 companies within a 100-mile radius of the zip code with OSHA violations, fatal/catastrophic incidents, or high rates of lost-time injuries and illnesses since 2000.

One such firm, Stroehmann Bakeries in Bensalem, Pa., has had nine OSHA violations cited, including four serious, stemming from two inspections brought to a close since 2000. The site had a 2002 lost-time injury rate of 18.05 per 100 employees, above the national average of 2.8 for that year, and received a warning letter from OSHA.

You can also search by company name and by industry.

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