An unexpected move from a cigarette manufacturer, emergency preparedness and worker safety during extreme weather were among the top stories featured on this week.

A Confined Space blog post

Houston, we have a fox-chicken problem…

Jordan Barab

While the new headlines are all about Hurricanes, health care, North Korea and tax “reform,” chickens around the country are getting more and more nervous as the foxes quietly move into the government agencies that are supposed to be protecting them.


A FairWarning story

Federal regulators ratchet up probe of Ford Explorer exhaust complaints

Christopher Jensen

Over the last five years, auto safety regulators have received hundreds of complaints of exhaust fumes and carbon monoxide wafting into the cabins of Ford Explorers.


Taxi, limo drivers have high risk of violent death at work

Taxi and limo drivers face a greater risk of violent death at work compared to other workers, and the risk is even higher among certain groups of drivers, according to new NIOSH research published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.


A NIOSH Science Blog post

National Employ Older Workers Week Webinar

Juliann Scholl PhD

September 25th to the 29th is National Employ Older Workers Week! The U.S. workforce is aging. The share of the labor force made up of people 55 years and older has increased from 12 percent in 1994 to 22 percent in 2014, and it is projected to reach approximately 25 percent in 2024.


Report: U.S. childhood obesity rates too high

Three out of ten American children aged 10-17 are either overweight or obese – something that puts them at increased risk of lifelong chronic diseases, according to the just-released 2016 National Survey of Children’s Health (NSCH).


NTSB to meet on fatal migrant worker bus crash

An accident that killed a bus driver and three migrant workers will be the subject of an upcoming National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) meeting in Washington, D.C.


Prevention of carbon monoxide poisoning subject of NTSB safety alerts

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) issued two safety alerts Wednesday to increase awareness among aircraft mechanics and pilots of the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.


NIOSH research

Screening test doesn’t predict work-related carpal tunnel syndrome

A screening test for early signs of carpal tunnel syndrome among new workers prior to job placement does not help prevent the disorder, according to a NIOSH-funded study at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri.


A FairWarning story

Noisy, but that’s not all

Leaf blowers flagged as prodigious polluters -- and possible health threat

Stuart Silverstein Anna Boiko-Weyrauch

Five years after starting his first job with a landscaping crew in the suburbs of Seattle, Fredi Dubon decided he had enough and called it quits. The work days were long, sometimes 12 hours, but a bigger problem was having to inhale exhaust from his gas-powered leaf blower.


Since 9/11-

We’re better prepared for public health emergencies

The U.S. has made considerable progress in its public health preparedness capability in the 16 years since the sixteen years after terrorist attacks at the World Trade Center in New York City, according to the American Journal of Public Health, which is releasing a special supplement on the subject. 


A Confined Space blog post

Disabled, used up and discarded: And conditions for poultry workers may get worse


By Jordan Barab

Normally, I’d say anyone with half a brain and a bit of a moral compass would see this as a problem in need of a humane solution:


Updating valves would have prevented serious ExxonMobil worker injuries

Four workers were severely burned at the ExxonMobil refinery in Baton Rouge, Louisiana last year because the facility operators failed to conduct a safety hazard analysis, according to the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB), which investigated the incident.


How drones are helping with post-Irma recovery

Hurricane response “a landmark in the evolution of drone usage”

After the widespread devastation Hurricane Irma wreaked on Florida, unmanned aircraft – more popularly, drones – have been invaluable in supporting response and recovery efforts in the battered Sunshine State.


Wait. What?

Cigarette manufacturer pledges millions to end cigarette smoking

Philip Morris International (PMI), the maker of cigarette brands like Marlboro, Chesterfield, L&M, Benson & Hedges and Virginia Slims, announced that it would fund a new non-profit organization aimed at eliminating smoking…cigarettes.


Two Cal. companies cited in workers’ deaths

The employer of a worker who was struck and killed by a moving spindle failed to identify and correct machinery hazards in its facility, according to California OSHA, which has issued five citations against Aero Pacific Corp.


What OSHA is doing post-Harvey

At FEMA’s request, OSHA personnel headed the Joint Field Office in Austin, Texas to develop an incident-specific health and safety plan to protect workers during the cleanup and recovery operations following the devastation wrought by Hurricane Harvey.


Government agencies are scrubbing climate change from power outage planning

At state and federal level, there’s considerable resistance to planning for the various impacts of extreme weather events linked to climate change. To be sure, climate change is exacerbating the impacts of events like hurricanes. While the economic toll of this year’s storms is being calculated, the U.S. Department of Energy estimated in 2013 that weather-related power outages cost the economy between $18 billion and $33 billion each year.



Q&A: Worker safety and health during hurricanes and tornados

What workers are at increased risk of injury during hurricanes or tornados? While most workers can stay inside during such a storm, some workers may be required to go into the storm. This may include utility workers, law enforcement personnel, firefighters, emergency medical personnel, federal, state and local government personnel (such as sanitation and highway workers), and military personnel.


A FairWarning story

Lots of love for driverless cars, except from one group–drivers

Paul Feldman

As tech companies and automakers, cheered on by the federal government, race to test and promote autonomous vehicles, several surveys show that most motorists don’t want to drive, ride in or be on the road anywhere near them.


This one factor is key to a lifelong healthy blood pressure level

New research shows maintaining a healthy weight throughout life – more so than four other health behaviors studied – is important to help keep blood pressure in check, according to research presented today at the American Heart Association (AHA) Council on Hypertension, AHA Council on Kidney in Cardiovascular Disease, American Society of Hypertension Joint Scientific Sessions 2017 in San Francisco.