Chicago turns green with safety, Tesla isw under fire for allegedly underreporting workplace injuries and a roadside accident in Michigan highlights the dangers faced by tow truck drivers. These were among the top stories featured on this week.

It’s official: ASSE is now ASSP

June 1, 2018

The American Society of Safety Engineers is no more. As of today, the organization that with more than 37,000 members worldwide is the American Society of Safety Professionals (ASSP), a name that comes with a revised logo, redesigned website and rebranded social media channels.

Self-driving Uber had six seconds to avoid fatal collision

June 1, 2018

The self-driving system software in an Uber test car classified a pedestrian it was about to strike and kill first as an unknown object, then as a vehicle, and finally as a bicycle – whose future path was not certain.

More women now getting lung cancer than men

Scientists puzzled: smoking rates not the reason

June 1, 2018

A collaborative study between the American Cancer Society and the National Cancer Institute finds rates of lung cancer, historically higher among men than women, have flipped among whites and Hispanics born since the mid-1960s. The authors of the study, which appears in the New England Journal of Medicine, say future research is needed to identify reasons for the trend, as the change is not fully explained by smoking patterns.

In bikes v. cars, bikes are losers

May 31, 2018

Fatal accidents between bicycles and cars are on the rise in the U.S., with NHTSA data showing that 840 bicyclists were killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes in 2016 - an increase from 829 in 2015. Such collisions account for 2.2 percent of all motor vehicle traffic fatalities. There are two main types of crashes involving bicycles; the most common are falls and the most serious are with vehicles.

FAA is hiring for safety-related aviation positions

May 31, 2018

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced that it will accept applications from experienced candidates to fill aviation safety positions at various facilities throughout the country. These positions are critical to the agency’s mission to provide the safest, most efficient aerospace system in the world.

Kansas contractor fined a sixth time for the same hazards

May 31, 2018

Wichita, Kansas roofing contractor Jose Barrientos faces $191,071 in fines after OSHA inspectors observed roofers at a Derby, Kansas, residential site working without appropriate fall protection. OSHA cited the employer for failing to provide adequate fall, eye, and face protection; train workers on fall hazards, ladder usage, and hazardous materials; and clear debris from the work area. 

A NIOSH Science Blog post

Improving occupational safety and health in the construction and mining industries

Scott Earnest PhD PE CSP Dana R. Willmer PhD Eileen P. Betit

May 31, 2018

With nearly 126 million full-time U.S. workers at risk of occupational illness and injury, it is critical to prioritize our research efforts to address the most important issues. One approach used by NIOSH and its partners to establish priorities is to consider the burden, need, and impact of potential research topics.

Chicago skyline to turn green for safety during National Safety Month

May 31, 2018

The city of Chicago is known for turning its major waterway, the Chicago River, green each St. Patrick’s Day, but it’ll be the lights on major buildings that will go green during the month of June, in observance of National Safety Month.

Alcohol (mis)use sending more people to ERs

May 31, 2018

The rate of alcohol-related visits to U.S. emergency departments (EDs) increased by nearly 50 percent between 2006 and 2014, especially among females and drinkers who are middle-aged or older, according to a new study conducted by National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) researchers.

How sporting events can damage your hearing

Bring ear plugs, noise canceling headphones with you

May 30, 2018

Love to go to sporting events and cheer on your favorite teams? While you’re sitting in the bleachers or stands, in a stadium or arena watching that football/hockey/baseball/soccer team win or lose, the CDC wants you to use ear protection – and avoid air horns.

A Confined Space blog post

Tesla’s recordkeeping violations show how repeal of OSHA’s Volks Rule hurts workers

Jordan Barab

May 30, 2018

One of the first actions of the Republican Congress after Trump’s election was to repeal OSHA’s recently issued “Volks Rule” that allowed the agency to cite companies for continuing failure to accurately record injuries and illnesses. Now an article by Will Evans at Reveal shows how real workers are suffering because of automaker Tesla’s failure to record numerous serious injuries and how the company will likely get away with it because of the action of Congressional Republicans and Donald Trump, who signed the repeal bill.

SUV crashes into disabled bus, kills tow truck driver

May 30, 2018

A fatal accident yesterday in southeast Michigan claimed the life of a tow truck driver and sent five people to the hospital with serious injuries. According to a news release from the Michigan State Police (MSP), the two truck driver was servicing a disabled school bus that was stopped on the side of a freeway when the accident occurred at about 10:20 a.m.

Worker killed in Florida trench

May 30, 2018

A South Florida utility company has been cited for multiple violations, after an employee was killed by a steel plate that fell on him as he installed sewer lines at a Naples Park worksite. Douglas N. Higgins Inc. was cited by OSHA for permitting employees to work in a trench without adequate cave-in protection; failing to provide safe entry and exit from a trench, perform atmospheric testing, and train employees on signals used when moving trench boxes; and allowing employees to use defective equipment to hoist a compactor.

Extreme weather led to chem plant fire, hazmat release

May 29, 2018

Excessive rain caused by Hurricane Harvey was a key factor in the fire and subsequent hazmat release at the Arkema chemical plant in Crosby, Texas, according to the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB), which has released its final investigation report into the August 31, 2017 incident. The report notes that in the days leading up to the incident, an “unprecedented amount” of rain fell at the plant due to Hurricane Harvey, causing equipment to flood and fail.

A FairWarning story

Johnson & Johnson absorbs another big loss in baby powder-mesothelioma case

Myron Levin

May 29, 2018

For the second time in less than two months, Johnson & Johnson has suffered a big courtroom loss in a case that blamed a rare asbestos-related cancer on long-term use of contaminated baby powder. A state court jury in Southern California today ordered the drug and consumer products giant to pay $4 million in punitive damages to mesothelioma victim Joanne Anderson and her husband, Gary Anderson.

How do certifications affect OSH, EHS salaries?

May 29, 2018

Safety, health and environmental professionals with Certified Safety Professional (CSP) certifications earn approximately $30,000 a year more than those without one, according to a salary survey conducted by the Board of Certified Safety Professionals (BCSP) and the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE).

Health groups accuse lawmakers of bowing to tobacco industry, weakening regs

May 29, 2018

Health advocates are condemning a legislative move made last week by the U.S. House Appropriations Committee that they say will significantly undermine public health by weakening the FDA’s ability to regulate tobacco products. A rider attached to the agriculture funding bill will exempt some types of cigars from FDA oversight and lessen the agency's authority to review the health hazards of thousands of tobacco products.