The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has released data following the first weeks of operation of its Commercial Driver’s License Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse. The clearinghouse has detected and identified nearly 8,000 positive substance abuse tests of commercial drivers since January 6, 2020. The clearinghouse now has more than 650,000 registrants.
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has determined the sequence of events involved in a spectacular multi-vehicle crash on the Pennsylvania Turnpike last month – one that killed five people and injured dozens more.
The deadly chain reaction occurred on Jan. 5 in the westbound lanes of Interstate 70 near Mount Pleasant, Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, amid light snow (the roadway had been treated).
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has unveiled five proposed changes to existing hours of service (HOS) rules for commercial motor vehicle drivers. Predictably, the revisions – which FMCSA says will increase safety and save money – are drawing mixed reactions. U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao said the changes would give commercial drivers more flexibility while maintaining the safety limits on driving time.
A truck driver who was terminated for refusing to drive in dangerous weather must be reinstated by his employer, Freight Rite, Inc. OSHA issued that order – along with stiff penalties - after determining that the employee told Freight Rite management “of his reasonable apprehension of danger to himself and to the general public due to the hazardous road conditions”.
Veterinarians face a hazmat risk when treating animal patients, truck stops don’t offer healthy options to truckers and OSHA says it’s going after worksites with high injury and illness rates. These were among the occupational safety and health stories featured on ISHN.com this week.
An organization representing truckers says federal Hours-of-Service (HOS) regulations intended to reduce fatigue and improve safety have actually done the opposite.
HOS rules are aimed to reducing driver fatigue that can cause accidents by limiting the number of driving hours per day, and the number of driving and working hours per week.
Poison Food, Poisoned Workers: Eyal Press of The Intercept writes about chronic health problems that have plagued Jessica Robertson since she began working as a part-time U.S. Department of Agriculture poultry inspector at a turkey processing plant, most likely from peracetic acid which is used to remove bacteria from the carcasses of chickens and turkeys.
OSHA is inviting public participation in an upcoming stakeholder meeting on whistleblower practices and experiences related to the railroad and trucking industries. The two industries combined accounted for the largest number of whistleblower complaints filed with OSHA in 2017.
The NIOSH Center for Motor Vehicle Safety (CMVS) is taking up the challenge of communicating to employers and workers about the risks of driving for work and how to avoid motor vehicle crashes. Crash risk affects workers in all industries and occupations, whether they drive tractor-trailers, cars, pickup trucks, or emergency vehicles, and whether driving is a primary or occasional part of the job.
Among the articles in the October 2020 issue of ISHN Magazine, we answer questions on dangerous dusts, discuss respiratory protection programs and the risks and benefits of smoke tubes, and learn how to get creative with training programs.