Employers and staffing agencies should work together to save lives and prevent injuries
December 22, 2014
The National Safety Council is calling for host employers and staffing agencies to coordinate and share responsibility for assuring the health and safety of temporary and contract workers. State-by state-data show temporary workers can have double the risk of suffering severe injuries at work and often are assigned to higher risk jobs.
Dr. David Michaels, five years into his job as OSHA boss and the longest-serving OSHA leader in agency history, gave a state of the OSHA nation report at ASSE’s Safety 2014 conference in Orlando this past June. These were his main talking points:
As Latino workers take on more and more of the nation’s toughest and dirtiest jobs, they increasingly are paying for it with their lives. Preliminary federal figures released last week showed that of the 4,405 U.S. workers killed on the job in 2013, 797 were Latinos. That equates to 3.8 of every 100,000 full-time Latino employees in the U.S. dying in workplace accidents during the year.
BP faces potentially billions in penalties for Deepwater Horizon explosion, PG&E faces actual billions in penalties for San Bruno pipeline explosion and firefighters helping with an “Ice Bucket Challenge” are serious burned by an arc flash incident. These were among the top EHS-related stories posted this week on ISHN.com.
OSHA chief Dr. David Michaels continued his agency’s campaign to raise awareness of the safety and health risks faced by temporary workers – an increasing employment tactic used by many businesses in the economy’s sluggish recovery – in his remarks to attendees at the annual meeting of the Voluntary Protection Program Participants’ Association held August 25-28 in National Harbor, MD, outside of Washington, DC.
From The West Virginia Record: Use of temporary employees has become common. Work injuries to temps is due in part to a lack of communication and confusion regarding the responsibilities of the host employer and the temporary employer regarding the health and safety of temporary employees.
The head of the U.S. Senate's workplace safety subcommittee has asked the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to explain its handling of the death a temp worker who suffocated under a pile of sugar at a Pennsylvania plant. The details of OSHA's investigation were reported Sunday by ProPublica and Univision.
The Department of Labor and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration have teamed up again to prevent heat-related deaths and illnesses. Heat-related injuries and fatalities in outdoor workers continue with record-breaking heat waves over the last three summers.