Occupations and sleep, health experts object to ACA repeal and hazards posed by tornado cleanup were among the top stories featured on ISHN.com this week.

NTSB to investigate Union Pacific train derailment

The National Transportation Safety Board TSB) has launched a 15-member Go Team to investigate today’s derailment of a Union Pacific freight train near Graettinger, Iowa. Initial reports received by the NTSB’s Response Operations Center indicate there were no injuries or fatalities associated with the derailment of 27 rail tank cars near Jack Creek in Iowa. Those reports further indicated the train consist included three locomotives and 101 cars, 100 of which were reported to be carrying ethanol.

March is Workplace Eye Wellness Month

Each year, nearly 25,000 Americans visit the emergency room due to a workplace eye injury. Each day, over 2,000 Americans suffer an eye injury. This means that almost one million Americans have experienced some vision loss due to eye injury, which has resulted in more than $300 million in lost work time, medical expenses and workman’s compensation.

Nationwide Safe + Sound Week will promote EHS programs

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), OSHA and partners like ASSE and AIHA are encouraging employers to hold special activities during June 12-18, designated as Safe + Sound Week. The event is a nationwide effort to raise awareness and understanding of the value of safety and health programs among workplaces.


Worker suffers chemical burns to face

A worker at a poultry processing plant in Selbyville, Delaware suffered severe injuries in a chemical accident last month. According to news reports, the 34-year-old employee of Mountaire Farms caused a small chemical explosion when he accidentally mixed two cleaning chemicals together “that cannot be mixed together,” said Fire Chief Matt Sliwa of the Selbyville Volunteer Fire Company (SVFC).


Short sleep duration by occupation group

March is Sleep Awareness Month. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine and the Sleep Research Society determined that adults require at least 7 hours of sleep per day to promote optimal health. Short sleep duration (< 7 hours per day) has been linked to various negative health outcomes including cardiovascular disease, obesity, and depression, as well as safety issues related to drowsy driving and injuries.


Tornado cleanup exposes workers, public to hazards

As residents recover from the damage caused by the recent tornadoes and severe storms in Missouri and Kansas, OSHA is urging recovery workers, employers and the public to use caution during cleanup efforts. The agency urges all to be aware of hazards they may encounter, and steps needed to to stay safe and healthy.


AHA: Americans with heart disease and stroke stand to lose under GOP’s ACA repeal plan

“Americans with heart disease and stroke will not get the affordable, accessible and adequate coverage they need under the House proposal to overhaul the Affordable Care Act (ACA). As many as 15 million individuals could lose their coverage under this draft legislation, according to multiple estimates."


Contractor-OSHA partnership to guide Mass. construction project

A Massachusetts company will develop a safety and health plan that will serve as a benchmark for subcontractors working on a new Science Center at Amherst College, under a strategic partnership signed with OSHA.


EU taking action against workplace carcinogens

A union representing European workers is pleased with what it says is an important step toward reducing occupational cancers. The European Parliament’s Committee on Employment and Social Affairs voted late last month to amend the European Commission’s proposal for a directive amending Directive 2004/37/EC on the protection of workers from the risks related to exposure to carcinogens or mutagens at work.


Law enforcement hearing conservation gets a boost from award winner

A Deputy Sheriff in Florida who developed a program to help law enforcement officers protect their hearing during firearms training won the this year’s Safe-in-Sound Excellence in Hearing Loss Prevention Award™.

WHO: Pollution causes 1.7 million child deaths a year

More than 1 in 4 deaths of children under 5 years of age are attributable to unhealthy environments, according to two new World Health Organization (WHO) reports, which note that indoor and outdoor air pollution, second-hand smoke, unsafe water, lack of sanitation, and inadequate hygiene take the lives of 1.7 million children under the age of 5.


NTSB: Docking errors led to cruise ship collision

Too much speed and too steep of an angle of approach resulted in the May 8, 2016, collision involving the cruise ship Carnival Pride in which more than $2 million in property damage occurred, according to a National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) marine accident brief released today.


NIOSH taking Total Worker Health to new level

Dr. John Howard

Our partners are vital in helping NIOSH advance the safety, health, and well-being of America’s workers. By working collaboratively with our partners, NIOSH is able to transfer our research findings into cost-effective solutions to make work safer, healthier, and more productive for workers, employers, and the Nation.


NJ worker dies in cement mixer accident

An accident last week that claimed the life of a worker in Wayne, New Jersey is under investigation. According to news reports, a motorist called 911 after being flagged down by workers employed by a landscaping company.


A DOL Blog post

12 stats about working women

This Women’s History Month, we’re taking a look at women’s contributions to the U.S. labor force. Here are some noteworthy statistics we’ve rounded up!


OSHA levies fines in fatal construction accident case

The April death of a construction worker killed by a falling beam has led OSHA to fine the worker’s employer and to issue multiple health and safety citations. According to OSHA, the company overstressed the beam during a demolition project, resulting in the beam’s failure.


Fellow workers devastated by accident that killed contractor

The California Highway Patrol is looking into the inspection history of the dump truck that backed over and killed a construction employee and pinned his co-worker on Highway 17 near Scotts Valley in Santa Cruz County, a tragedy that has devastated their employer, one of California’s oldest and largest construction companies.


Cone of Silence on enforcement news from U.S. Labor Department

Paul Feldman

In November, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration announced fines against businesses with workers who were killed when they were pulled into a wood chipper, burned in a refinery fire and crushed in collapsing grain bins and construction trenches. In all, OSHA issued 33 enforcement news releases that month, and over 50 more from Dec. 1 until just before Inauguration Day on Jan. 20.