Carcinogens in western states, European workplaces and post-Fukushima Japan were in the news this week, along with a hearing loss prevention update and reflections on the occupational safety and health profession.


Sheet metal workers to get information about mesothelioma dangers

The Sheet Metal Occupational Health Institute Trust (SMOHIT) is partnering with the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation to better educate sheet metal workers about mesothelioma and assist with treatment in the case of diagnosis. 




Five years after reactor meltdown

Huge increase in cancers expected in Japan from Fukushima disaster

Residents of the Fukushima area and the rest of Japan will experience more than 10,000 excess cancer deaths as a result of radiation exposure from the triple-reactor meltdown that took place on March 11, 2011, according to a new report from Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR) and International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW).


New report from Europe IDs workplace carcinogens

A new European Trade Union Institute (ETUI) report identifies more than 70 carcinogenic substances for which binding limit values for exposure of workers at the workplace should be defined at EU level.


A NIOSH Science Blog post

Wearable exoskeletons to reduce physical load at work

Robotic-like suits which provide powered assist and increase human strength may conjure thoughts of sci-fi and superhero film genres. But these wearable exoskeleton devices are now a reality and the market for their applications in the workplace is projected to increase significantly in the next five years.


Latin dancing may have health benefits for older adults

A four-month dance program helped older Latino adults walk faster and improved their physical fitness, which may reduce their risk for heart disease, according to research presented at the American Heart Association’s (AHA) Epidemiology/Lifestyle 2016 Scientific Sessions.


Long work hours linked to higher cardiovascular disease risk

Over a decade or longer, risk increases beyond 45 hours per week

Working long hours — particularly 46 hours per week or more — may increase the long-term risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) events such as heart attack, reports a study in the March Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, official publication of the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM).


A ProPublica Story

Corporate campaign to ditch workers’ comp stalls

By Michael Grabell and Howard Berkes

Posted with permission from ProPublica; this story was co-published with NPR. A campaign by some of America’s biggest companies to “opt out” of state workers’ compensation — and write their own plans for dealing with injured workers — was dealt a major blow Friday when an Oklahoma commission ruled the alternative system unconstitutional.




ASSE President’s message

Our Pursuit of Professionalism

Michael Belcher CSP

From the March issue of Professional Safety Journal: Since ancient times, safety and health laws have prescribed both remedies and retributions for a variety of situations.


Suit seeks back wages, damages for violations of the OSH Act

The U.S. Department of Labor has filed a lawsuit against Lear Corp., doing business as Renosol Seating LLC, and three of its managers for suspending and terminating employees who reported workplace hazards in violation of the Occupational Safety and Health Act.




Are you safe in a hospital?

CDC says superbugs threaten hospital patients

America is doing a better job of preventing healthcare-associated infections (HAIs), but more work is needed – especially in fighting antibiotic-resistant bacteria. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) latest Vital Signs report urges healthcare workers to use a combination of infection control recommendations to better protect patients from these infections.


Airline workers face danger on the ground

An aviation company whose employees have quadruple the rate of injuries of other workers in their risk class has been cited by the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) for multiple health and safety violations.