A long-term silicosis study yields valuable results; an OSHA trainer makes thousands selling fake training cards and a risk from wearable tech you may not have thought of. These were among the top occupational safety and health stories featured on ISHN.com this week.

Physically active women have lower risk of heart disease

Younger women having more acute heart attacks in the U.S.

February 22, 2019

Women who spent less of their day in sedentary behaviors—sitting or reclining while awake—had a significantly decreased risk of heart disease, but there has been an increase in the incidence of younger women having acute heart attacks in the U.S., according to two studies in a special Go Red for Women issue of the American Heart Association’s (AHA) journal Circulation, published in February, American Heart Month.

A NIOSH Science Blog post

29-year summary of silicosis in one state

Michigan’s data is “important to the rest of the country”

Kenneth D. Rosenman M.D. Mary Jo Reilly MS

February 21, 2019

Silicosis is a lung disease caused by exposure to airborne silica. Generally, it causes scarring (pulmonary fibrosis) after 20 or more years of exposure. Since 1988, Michigan has been identifying individuals who develop silicosis with the goal of targeting prevention actions. Michigan’s system is both the longest running and only comprehensive surveillance system for silicosis in the United States.

Report: Unless we fix health care system, cancer progress won’t be felt

February 21, 2019

A new report says without a national investment and commitment to transforming health care delivery in the United States, many people will not benefit from the substantial progress in reducing the burden of cancer already made, let alone the innovations and breakthroughs that are yet to come. The article is the fifth in a series comprising a cancer control blueprint to identify opportunities for improving cancer control in the U.S. The latest chapter, authored by Robin Yabroff, Ph.D., and colleagues describes the state of cancer care delivery in the U.S.; provides an overview of its health care systems; and identifies goals for a high-performing health care system.

Ag rollover protection saves millions in prevented deaths in New York State

February 21, 2019

Rollover protective structures, or ROPS, saved more than $4 million in prevented deaths and injuries among New York State farm workers from 2007 to 2017, according to a NIOSH-funded study published in the American Journal of Public HealthExternal. ROPS, which became standard tractor equipment in 1985, help prevent injuries from tractor overturns –the leading cause of farm-related deaths.


Towing industry death rate 15X the average for private industry

Until now, nonfatal injuries and deaths in the motor vehicle towing industry have been largely overlooked

February 21, 2019

The motor vehicle towing industry has a higher rate of work-related injury and death compared to other industries, according to NIOSH research presented at the National Occupational Injury Research Symposium in Morgantown, West Virginia. Yet studies historically have focused on the safety of other first responders, including law enforcement officers, fire fighters, and emergency medical services workers.

OSHA trainer caught selling fake training cards

February 20, 2019

A certified OSHA trainer who plead guilty to selling fake OSHA training cards faces up to five years in prison and $250,000 in fines. According to the Department of Justice, training agent Mark Dropal sold more than 100 fraudulent training cards for about $200 each to carpenters in New York and New Jersey between Feb. 21 and March 11, 2018.

ASSP report to help companies develop active shooter plans

February 20, 2019

The shooting on Saturday in Aurora, Illinois involving a gunman who opened fire at a warehouse where he’d worked is the latest incident of its kind, but probably won’t be the last. Five people were killed and five police officers who responded to the scene were injured during the shooting, which reportedly lasted for approximately one hour. The suspect, 45-year-old Gary Martin, was killed in the exchange of gunfire. News reports say Martin returned to the warehouse armed after being fired from his job.

What hiring managers are looking for in EHS grads

February 20, 2019

Want to enhance your chances of getting hired as an EHS generalist – also known as an environmental health and safety multidisciplinary professional? In addition to the necessary education, make sure your communication skills – both oral and written – are well developed. That’s one of the conclusions in a white paper just released by the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA), one that focuses on the hiring requirements and expectations from stakeholders for recent EHS generalist graduates.

CSB IDs cause of 2016 Pascagoula gas plant explosion

February 20, 2019

The U.S. Chemical Safety Board has released its final report of the June 27, 2016, investigation of an explosion and fire at the Enterprise Products Pascagoula Gas Plant in Pascagoula, MS. The CSB determined that the probable cause was a phenomenon known as thermal fatigue. The CSB also issued recommendations to two trade associations and local emergency responders.

Company fined for lack of hazardous energy training

February 19, 2019

A 54-year-old worker died after he fell into a vat of sulfuric acid at a South Lyon-based steel manufacturing firm (Michigan) in what is being described as a "serious industrial accident." The man was fully submerged in the 10 percent to 12 percent sulfuric acid solution as his Michigan Seamless Tube co-workers worked desperately to pull him from the industrial container, burning themselves from the at least 160-degree chemical solution, Fire Chief Robert Vogel said.

Bus brings safety training to Canadian worksites

February 19, 2019

If you can’t get your crew to a safety training, there’s a bus which will bring the training to you. A bus which is outfitted for certified safety training is an innovative wrinkle to get this most important job done, says Randy Dignard, president of Industrial Safety Trainers.

Did modifications doom stretch limo passengers?

February 19, 2019

Did changes that allowed a 2001 Ford Excursion stretch limousine to carry 18 people contribute to the horrific death toll in an October 6, 2018 accident in upstate New York? That’s one of the question the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is attempting to answer in its investigation into the tragedy, which killed the driver and all 18 passengers in the limo – many of them related to each other – and also claimed the lives of two pedestrians.

Woman power: Female trailblazers are the keynote speakers at AIHce EXP 2019

February 19, 2019

The first woman U.S. Navy F-14 Tomcat fighter pilot and an innovator in health care technology will be the keynote speakers at The American Industrial Hygiene Conference and Expo, to be held in May at the Minneapolis Convention Center. AIHce EXP 2019 runs from May 20-22, with professional development courses offered May 18, 19 and 23.

A Confined Space blog post

Protecting America’s Workers Act introduced

Would strengthen OSHA and workers’ rights

Jordan Barab

February 19, 2019

A new and improved Protecting America’s Workers Act (PAWA) has been introduced into the House of Representatives by Congressman Joe Courtney (D-CT). Similar versions of this bill has been introduced every year for over a decade. The bill number is H.R.1074.

EPA launches plan to safeguard drinking water from PFAS

February 19, 2019

The EPA says it has put together a nationwide plan to address PFAS - an environmental danger that has gained prominence and raised alarm in recent years. The acronym stands for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, a group of man-made chemicals that have been manufactured and used in a variety of industries around the globe, including in the United States since the 1940s.

5 must-take steps to ensure safety in manufacturing facilities

Vernon Glick

February 18, 2019

The manufacturing industry requires workers to engage in high-risk activities, such as soldering, welding, metal cutting, raw material assembling, and heavy lifting and rigging. Moreover, magnetic fields, compressed gases, and harmful radiations can negatively impact a worker’s health. In fact, workplace hazards lead to nearly 150 deaths per day in the US.

Few clues in railroad worker’s death

February 18, 2019

The clear skies offered good visibility and a lookout was posted on the morning of November 30, 2018, but those factors didn’t prevent a CSX Transportation freight train from striking and killing a track welder. The National Transportation Safety Board’s (NTSB) preliminary report on the incident offers few clues as to why the accident occurred. According to the report, the accident in Estill, South Carolina occurred as the train – traveling at about 50 miles an hour – approached a location where a welder was at work on the track.

3 reasons to offer compressed air safety training

Kayla Matthews

February 18, 2019

Compressed air is integral in nearly every industry, from powering tools and providing pressure for robotic assembly arms to inflating tires and even cleaning off dusty surfaces. Companies might offer training on how to use compressed air and its related tools, but does any of this include how to use them safely? Why should companies offer compressed air safety training, and what negative repercussions could they face for not providing it?

Wearable tech brings lithium battery explosion risk

February 18, 2019

If your employees wear small, wearable devices powered by lithium batteries – such as body cameras – they are potentially at risk from burns or other injuries if the devices catch fire or explode. Those outcomes may occur if the batteries are defective or become damaged. There were more than 25,000 overheating or fire incidents involving lithium battery-powered consumer products over a recent five-year-period, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.