Carbon Monoxide Exposure From Lift Trucks

By Jerome E. Spear, CIH, CSP, FAIHA The use of lift trucks powered by internal combustion engines inside buildings and enclosed spaces creates the potential buildup of carbon monoxide (CO).  Propane-powered (LPG) lift trucks represent 60% of all material handling vehicles and 80% of all internal combustion lift trucks.  Although LPG lift trucks emit considerably…

PREPARING FOR A DOT AUDIT

By Alexander Ritchie and Georg Marcum Whether a company utilizes a fleet of trucks or has just one commercial vehicle, the anticipation of a Department of Transportation (DOT) safety compliance audit can be a nerve-wracking experience – if you are not prepared.  The best way to pass a DOT audit is to be certain that…

PREVENTING DAMAGE TO UNDERGROUND UTILITIES

By Jerome E. Spear, CIH, CSP, FAIHA and Alexander Ritchie The possibilities of damaging underground utilities exist at every drilling site.  Inadvertently severing an underground power line, rupturing a natural gas line, or damaging other underground utilities can result in significant consequences in terms of disrupting essential services, costly repairs, downtime, and potentially serious injuries…

HAZARD COMMUNICATION

OSHA’s Adoption of the Globally System of Classificationand Labeling of Chemicals (GHS) By Jerome E. Spear, CIH, CSP, FAIHA Laws and regulations throughout the world are different enough to require multiple labels and safety data sheets for the same product both within the U.S. and international trade. It is estimated that about 42 to 45…

Compressed Gas Cylinder Safety

Compressed gases pose a unique hazard. Depending on the particular  and mechanical hazards associated with high pressure as well as chemical hazards associated with the gas itself. As a result, gas cylinders require special storage and handling precautions. Compressed gas and equipment is addressed in specific OSHA standards for both general industry and the construction…

HEXAVALENT CHROMIUM: Feasible Engineering Controls for Welding Operations

OSHA requires exposures to hexavalent chromium (Cr[VI]) above the permissible exposure limit (PEL) of 5 micrograms per cubic meter (μg/m³) to be reduced using feasible engineering controls, which is consistent with other substance-specific standards and good industrial hygiene practice. If feasible engineering controls do not sufficiently reduce exposures to below the PEL, exposures must be…

Measuring Safety and Health Performance

A Review of Commonly-UsedPerformance IndicatorsBy Jerome E. Spear, CSP, CIH, FAIHA How an organization measures performance undoubtedly influences organizational behavior. However, measuring safety is difficult because it is difficult to predict the impact that new safety metrics will have on individual behavior, attitudes, and the overall safety climate. Regardless of how difficult it is to…

Controlling Noise Exposure

After determining worker exposure to noise, intervention may be needed to reduce noise exposures to allowable levels. There are three general ways to reduce to noise exposure, which are as follows (in order of preference): • Engineering Controls• Administrative Controls• Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) When engineering controls are not feasible to reduce exposures, administrative controls…

Cranes and Overhead Powerlines

Case 1: A 28-year old construction worker was holding onto a steel ladder beingmoved by a telescoping boom crane. As the crane’s boom was swung in the direction of 7,200 volt power lines, the cable contacted the lines and the worker was electrocuted. Case 2: A co-owner of a steel erection company and three workers…

Major Health Hazards to Construction Workers

National estimates suggest that about 10 times as many fatal occupational illnesses occur compared with fatal occupational injuries.¹ Furthermore, one study concluded that the risk of developing an occupationally-related disease over a lifetime in a construction trade is two to six times greater than for non-construction workers.² For various reasons, awareness and efforts to manage…