We’re coming up on an anniversary: in 1970 Congress passed and President Richard Nixon signed into the law the Occupational Safety and Health Act, creating the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, OSHA.
NIOSH will celebrate a notable 20th anniversary this month. On October 19, 1996, a new facility was dedicated on NIOSH’s Morgantown, West Virginia, campus. The facility, often referred to now as the “L” Building, provided NIOSH for the first time with a strategic convergence of specialized equipment and dedicated laboratory space for advanced health-effects research.
Two prominent members of the American Society of Safety Engineers were appointed to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Board of Scientific Counselors, a federal advisory committee formed to give the NIOSH director advice and guidance.
The traditional occupational safety and health programs of the twentieth century were designed, by and large, to prevent work-related injury, illness, and death in workplaces where hazards usually were recognizable and predictable. In the twenty-first century, scientists and decision-makers have had to develop additional skills and strategies to address another type of hazard: the risks that emergency responders face in the line of duty from unpredictable, uncontrolled conditions encountered in large-scale disasters.