Weekly news round-up
UPS plane crash, oil industry mutual aid framework
Workplace violence, binge drinking and the safety of hurricane cleanup workers were all featured in this week’s top EHS-related news stories on ISHN.com:
Carbon rule, pipeline safety update
Among the new federal regulations expected to be issued today is one which is being challenged on the basis of the way the social cost of the carbon rule was calculated for it.
Marley Building Materials facing $50,000 in fines
An employee of Lindenhurst-based Marley Building Materials was shoveling sand onto a conveyer belt Feb. 19th when his left arm got caught in the conveyer belt. His arm was amputated above the elbow.
High-fat, sugary foods during pregnancy linked to problems in offspring
Vulnerability to alcohol and drug abuse may begin in the womb and be linked to how much fatty and sugary foods a mother eats during pregnancy, according to findings from animal lab experiments presented at APA’s 121st Annual Convention.
Multiple safety violations found
A bus company that stranded 50 passengers along a N.C. freeway and kept them waiting 10 hours for a replacement coach has been shut down by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
A NIOSH Science Blog post
In 2012, the Healthcare and Social Assistance (HCSA) sector was amongst the largest industry sectors in the U.S. employing an estimated 19.4 million workers (13.5% of the total workforce). On average, over the last decade, U.S. healthcare workers have accounted for two-thirds of the nonfatal workplace violence injuries in all industries involving days away from work .
Captain had 7,900 flight hours in 737s
The National Transportation Safety Board’s (NTSB) ongoing investigation into the July 22nd Southwest Airlines accident at New York’s LaGuardia Airport has not yet identified a definite cause of the incident, but it has yielded considerable information about the crew, conditions and flight.
"This resolution cannot restore the life that was taken”
A recent agreement between North Suffolk Mental Health Association, Inc. and the U.S. Department of Labor is intended to safeguard employees against the type of workplace violence that claimed the life of a counselor at a group home in 2011.
Affects productivity, health care, criminal justice system
Excessive alcohol use causes a large economic burden to states and the District of Columbia, according to a new study released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Excessive alcohol use cost states and D.C. a median of $2.9 billion in 2006, ranging from $420 million in North Dakota to $32 billion in California.
NTSB investigators en route
A UPS pilot and co-pilot were killed early this morning when their cargo plane crashed and exploded near an airport in Birmingham, Alabama. News sources say Flight 1354 United Parcel Service Airbus A300 crashed at approximately 6 a.m., erupting in two fiery explosions and forcing the evacuation of residents living within a half-mile radius.
“No news is good news” in EHS
ISHN Chief Editor Dave Johnson is the subject of a Thought Leaders Project video produced by the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA). The project highlights the contributions of industrial hygienists – and those who report on them – and captures the stories of influential AIHA members.
NFPA’s necconect is educational and interactive
Electricians and all those interested in electrical safety have a new online community they can join, thanks to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). The new website from the NFPA, necconnect.org, is a resource for installers and contractors, designers and engineers, code enforcers, and policy makers for all things related to the NFPA 70®, National Electrical Code® (NEC®), which sets the standard for safe electrical installations in homes, businesses, industry and institutions.
Oil, hazardous chemicals the culprits
Fires at an oil tank and a furniture stripping company injured four fighters in two different states yesterday. In one incident, a hydraulic line for a 240-gallon oil tank broke and ignited at the Salt River Project plant in Gilbert, Arizona yesterday morning, according to news sources.
Hazards range from electrical to hazardous waste
Hurricane season is officially underway – and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is predicting that hurricane activity will be at above normal levels this year. With circulating air and wind speeds that can exceed 155 miles per hour, these storm systems are capable of inflicting tremendous damage on communities, such as the devastation wrought by Hurricane Sandy last year on the northeastern U.S. and six other countries.
Safety violations add up to $77,000 in penalties
Calumet Montana Refining modified high-voltage electrical equipment to keep the asphalt mill operating, “despite the safety concerns this modification presented to employees," said Jeff Funke, OSHA’s area director in Billings.
Bloodborne pathogen controls inadequate as well
Hebrew Home and Hospital Inc. has been cited by OSHA for 14 serious violations of workplace safety standards carrying proposed penalties of $58,800. The West Hartford health care facility was inspected under OSHA's national emphasis program for nursing and residential care facilities.
Agency reviewing existing regulations
The U.S. Department of Labor's Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) is requesting data, comments and information about refuge alternatives for miners in underground coal mines.
Agreement resolves OSHA citations following 2011 inspections
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., has entered into a corporate-wide settlement agreement with the U.S. Department of Labor to improve safety and health conditions in all 2,857 Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club stores under federal jurisdiction.
OGP publishes mutual aid framework
OGP, the International Association of Oil & Gas Producers, has published new guidance to help companies aid one another in case of a major offshore incident, a move that strengthens the industry’s efforts to improve response to major incidents, should they ever occur again.