Chemical safety, OSHA’s heat-illness campaign and who falls – and why – were among  this week’s top EHS-related stories as featured on

Pain sufferers feel that pharmacists treat them like addicts

A survey of people who suffer chronic pain finds that many of them feel uncomfortable when they visit their pharmacy. In a National Pain Foundation survey of more 300 chronic pain sufferers: More than half (52%) stated that they "are concerned that they will be treated like a drug addict by their pharmacist." 

Read More

Vote now in ISHN Readers Choice Awards

The polls are open…for voting on top PPE and safety products. Voting is now open for the ISHN Readers Choice Awards. Cast your vote for the most innovative and effective EHS-related products and services available today, in categories ranging from FR apparel to fall, respiratory and skin protection to gas detectors.

Read More

Scientists get new look at how the brain processes visual information

Every time you open your eyes, visual information flows into your brain, which interprets what you’re seeing. Now, for the first time, MIT neuroscientists have noninvasively mapped this flow of information in the human brain with unique accuracy, using a novel brain-scanning technique.
Read More

Communities continue to call for stronger protections as chemical incidents rise

A report from the Center for Effective Government

By Sofia Plagakis

As the number of chemical disasters and injuries continues to mount in 2014, evidence shows that the risks that chemical facilities present to the local communities in which they are located are greater than many residents previously understood. The Center for Effective Government has created a set of maps, showing how close many of these facilities are to schools and hospitals.

Read More

Severe violator cited yet again

NJ company has “active and ongoing disregard for its workers’ safety”

A company inspected in January as part of OSHA’s Local Emphasis Program on fall hazards in construction was cited for two repeat and two serious safety violations for failing to provide required protective equipment and to protect workers from serious fall hazards.

Read More

Study: E-cigarettes may encourage youth smoking

Smoking electronic or e-cigarettes may encourage adolescents to smoke the real thing, according to a study published online March 6 in JAMA Pediatrics. The results of the study contradict claims by the e-cigarette industry that their products can help people quit smoking.

Read More

Protect your drivers with a second pair of “eyes”

A technology solution identifies risky driver behaviors, elicits drivers safety, and provides high quality video in a compact package. An integrated forward-facing camera captures video of the road, while the rear-facing camera captures the vehicle cabin and driver, allowing for a comprehensive view of critical events.

Read More

Help OSHA evaluate its heat illness prevention campaign

With warmer weather hopefully on the way, OSHA wants to know how effective its heat illness prevention campaign website. The agency is gathering stakeholder input on the campaign using a brief survey to evaluate the website and and to identify possible modifications for next year.

Read More

NTSB chair to head up NSC

The National Safety Council (NSC) announced today the appointment of Deborah A.P. Hersman as the  president and CEO of the 100-year-old organization chartered by Congress to prevent unintentional injury and death. Ms. Hersman, who is currently the chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), will be joining NSC at its headquarters in Itasca, IL, in suburban Chicago. 

Read More

New toxic chemical bill would weaken protections, critics charge

Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL) released a draft bill entitled the Chemicals in Commerce Act (CICA) on Thursday, Feb. 27 that provides no significant improvements in protecting public health and the environment from toxic chemicals. Many of the provisions in the draft bill maintain the already deficient approaches to health protections now included under the 1976 Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), our nation's outdated and ineffective chemical safety law.

Read More

When vision goes dark, hearing may sharpen, say researchers

Call it the Ray Charles Effect: a young child who is blind develops a keen ability to hear things that others cannot. Researchers have long known this can happen in the brains of the very young, which are malleable enough to re-wire some circuits that process sensory information.

Read More

Can workplace violence risk be reduced in prisons?

Miss. company ordered to increase staffing, fix cell door locks

A company that operates 50 correctional facilities in the U.S. has agreed to take steps to reduce the potential for its employees to be injured  -- or worse -- by workplace violence, under a corporate-wide settlement with the U.S. Department of Labor.

Read More

Higher earners more likely to have paid sick leave

Data shows more than 41 million U.S. workers lack access

Income level, occupational type and gender all play a part in whether or not a U.S. worker gets paid sick leave, according to a new study by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research. “Paid sick days bring substantial benefits to employers, workers, families, and communities,” according to by Claudia Williams, Barbara Gault, Ph.D., authors of:Paid Sick Days Access in the United States: Differences by Race/Ethnicity, Occupation, Earnings, and Work Schedule

Read More

"The U.S. is facing an industrial chemical crisis"

CSB chief testifies before Senate about preventable accidents

The Chevron refinery fire in California in 2012 – the West Texas explosion last year – the West Virginia water crisis in January: All of these were preventable accidents. The United States is facing an industrial chemical safety crisis. After all of these accidents, we hear frustration and heartbreak.  Workers, emergency responders, and the public continue to die and suffer injuries.

Read More

NTSB ready to assist with missing plane mystery

Speculation: whatever happened, happened quickly

A team of National Transportation Safety Board investigators left the U.S. for Asia on Saturday night, in order to assist with the investigation into the disappearance of the March 8 Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, which went missing on a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.

Read More

Welder dies when electrocuted while welding feed bunker wagon

On August 6, 2003, a 44-year-old male farmer was welding a feed bunker wagon when he was electrocuted. The portable 240-volt plug-in cord-connected Hobart welder was in disrepair. The power cord and the cables had damaged insulation exposing the conductors. The welder lead cables were at least 10 years old and were 12 feet long.

Read More

Who are the victims of falls?

A new NIOSH-funded study on fatalities in the construction industry suggests roofers in residential construction are among those most likely to die in falls from roofs. The study, "Fatal falls from roofs among U.S. construction workers," finds that "the odds of fatal falls from roofs were higher for roofing and residential construction than any other construction sector."

Read More

From Europe-

10 safety tips – work at height

The working height can be dangerous if safety precautions are not taken. You should know that even a drop of a few inches can cause serious injury. Work requiring the use of ladders or scaffolding must be studied in order to eliminate as much risk to workers.

Read More