Sunday, August 30, 2015

OSHA provides guidance to compliance officers for enforcing the revised Hazard Communication standard

OSHA has issued instructions to compliance safety and health officers on how to ensure consistent enforcement of the revised Hazard Communication standard*. This instruction outlines the revisions to the standard, such as the revised hazard classification of chemicals, standardizing label elements for containers of hazardous chemicals, and specifying the format and required content for safety data sheets. It explains how the revised standard is to be enforced during its transition period and after the standard is fully implemented on June 1, 2016.

OSHA revised the standard in March 2012 to align with the United Nations Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals. The revised standard improves the quality, consistency and clarity of chemical hazard information that workers receive.

Under the standard, employers were required to train workers on the new label elements and safety data sheets by Dec. 1, 2013. Chemical manufacturers, importers and distributors had to comply with revised safety data sheet requirements by June 1, 2015. Manufacturers and importers had to comply with new labeling provisions by June 1, 2015. Distributors have until Dec. 1, 2015, to comply with labeling provisions as long as they are not relabeling materials or creating safety data sheets, in which case they must comply with the June 1 deadline

Additional information on the revised Hazard Communication Standard may be found on OSHA's Hazard Communication Safety and Health Topics page.

This information was provided by: OSHA

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Control of Hazardous Energy (Lockout/Tagout)

What is hazardous energy?

Energy sources including electrical, mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, chemical, thermal, or other sources in machines and equipment can be hazardous to workers. During the servicing and maintenance of machines and equipment, the unexpected startup or release of stored energy can result in serious injury or death to workers.

What are the harmful effects of hazardous energy?

Workers servicing or maintaining machines or equipment may be seriously injured or killed if hazardous energy is not properly controlled. Injuries resulting from the failure to control hazardous energy during maintenance activities can be serious or fatal! Injuries may include electrocution, burns, crushing, cutting, lacerating, amputating, or fracturing body parts, and others.

    A steam valve is automatically turned on burning workers who are repairing a downstream connection in the piping.
    A jammed conveyor system suddenly releases, crushing a worker who is trying to clear the jam.
    Internal wiring on a piece of factory equipment electrically shorts, shocking worker who is repairing the equipment.

Craft workers, electricians, machine operators, and laborers are among the 3 million workers who service equipment routinely and face the greatest risk of injury. Workers injured on the job from exposure to hazardous energy lose an average of 24 workdays for recuperation.

Learn More:


Monday, August 24, 2015

Updated comprehensive guide to OSHA training requirements now available.

OSHA has posted a fully updated version of its guide to all agency training requirements to help employers, safety and health professionals, training directors and others comply with the law and keep workers safe. Training Requirements in OSHA Standards organizes the training requirements into five categories: General Industry, Maritime, Construction, Agriculture and Federal Employee Programs.

The safety and health training requirements in OSHA standards have prevented countless workplace tragedies by ensuring that workers have the required skills and knowledge to safely do their work. These requirements reflect OSHA's belief that training is an essential part of every employer's safety and health program for protecting workers from injuries and illnesses. For a list of educational materials available from OSHA, please visit the Publications webpage.

This information provided by: OSHA


Thursday, August 20, 2015

First Aid & Medical - On the job Tool Box Talks

First aid supplies and other medical services must be available at your jobsite. The minimum OSHA requirements are:

·             Medical personnel must be available for advice on occupational health matters.
·             Prior to the start of a project, provisions must be made for prompt medical attention in case of serious injury.
·             An infirmary, clinic, hospital, or physician must be nearby, or someone trained in first aid must be available at the worksite.
·             First aid supplies must be easy to get to.
·             Having available means to transport an injured person to a physician or hospital.
·             If 911 service is not available, the posting of emergency numbers for physicians, hospitals, and ambulances.
On-site medical treatment—The construction rules for medical services and first aid say that prior to starting a project, provisions must be made for prompt medical attention in case of serious injury. This means that when an injury or illness occurs, maximum response time is fifteen minutes. This is currently recognized by OSHA as appropriate for most cases.
However, conditions at each workplace must be looked at when the first aid program is developed. This is to ensure that fifteen minutes is adequate to meet all needs. Where a medical facility is near the workplace, OSHA rules require your employer to ensure the following:
·             In areas where accidents resulting in suffocation, severe bleeding or other life threatening injury or illness can be expected, a three to four minute response time is required.
·             In other circumstances, for instance where a life-threatening injury is an unlikely outcome of an accident, a longer response time of up to fifteen minutes is acceptable.
·             If you work in areas where emergency transportation is not available, your company must provide acceptable transportation. If arrangements cannot be made to provide emergency medical service within an appropriate time frame, then a trained first aid person must be available for each shift.
Eyewash/drenching stations—Where you may be exposed to injurious corrosive materials, suitable eyewash/drenching stations must be available at your jobsite.
You need to review your company’s Emergency Action Plan for first aid and medical services. It should outline everything you need to know to get help during a medical emergency.
This information is provided by: Assurance Agency

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Incident Reporting Tool Box Talks

The health and safety of our construction workers is a top priority.  It is everyone’s responsibility to help prevent injuries and report all incidents immediately so that the same thing does not happen again. 
When an incident does occur, you must report it to your foreman immediately and no later than the end of the work day.  An employee statement form must be filled out so that the details of the incident can be investigated. It is important to learn what actions must be taken to prevent the accident from happening again.  Your foreman has all the necessary forms for conducting an investigation.  This process is not to place blame on the employee or foreman.  It is to find the “root” cause of the incident.
No matter how small the incident may seem, it should be reported to your foreman.  Your foreman will decide what to do next.
 Let’s discuss a few scenarios:
1.      While setting up a ladder, a slight pain is felt in your shoulder.  You work the rest of the day however it doesn’t hurt too bad.  Should you report this or wait until tomorrow to see if it still hurts?
2.      You cut your finger on a utility knife and there is some blood that requires a band aid.  Should you report this?
3.      You trip over a pile of wood and hit your elbow on the ground but do not feel any pain.  Should you report this?
The following items should always be immediately reported to your foreman:
1.      An injury to any employee, subcontractor, client representative, or private citizen, even if the injury does not require medical attention.
2.      An injury to a member of the public occurring on a work site possibly resulting from our activity or involving property, equipment, or resource
3.      Illness resulting from suspected chemical exposure
4.      Chronic or re-occurring conditions such as back pain or cumulative trauma disorders
5.      Fire or explosion
6.      Any vehicle accidents occurring on site, while traveling to or from client locations, or with any company-owned or leased vehicle
7.      Property damage resulting from any activity
8.      Structural collapse or potential structural hazards
9.      Unexpected release or imminent release of a hazardous material
10.   Unexpected chemical exposures to workers or the public
11.   A safety related complaint from the public regarding our activities
12.   Any other significant occurrence that could impact safety - WHEN IN DOUBT, REPORT IT!

This information is provided by: Assurance Agency

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Introduction to OSHA for Small Businesses (OSHA 7510 Course) This is a free course.

An introduction to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) for owners and managers of small businesses.

• Prevent or reduce injuries and illnesses in the workplace
• Learn about OSHA standards and the inspection process
• Implement a workplace safety and health program
• Understand employee training requirements
• Know what assistance OSHA provides to small businesses

Sept. 3, 2015 – DeKalb, IL (Barsema Alumni & Visitors Center)
     Time: 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Sept. 30, 2015 – Hillside, IL (Construction Safety Council)
     Time: 7:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Oct. 14, 2015 – Rockford, IL (NIU-Rockford)
     Time: 5:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
Oct. 21, 2015 – Naperville, IL (NIU-Naperville)
     Time: 5:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
Feb. 12, 2016 – Hoffman Estates, IL (NIU-Hoffman Estates)
     Time: 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
May 10, 2016 – Danville, IL (Danville Village Mall)
     Time: 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m

1. Online at (
2. By phone at (800) 656-5317

View the postcard that was mailed out.

There is no charge to attend this course.

Course provided by: National Safety Education Center, NIU College of Engineering & Engineering Technology, EB 130590 Garden Road, DeKalb, IL 60115

Monday, August 10, 2015

Call for Abstracts-March 7 & 8, 2016 Annual Construction Expo & Safety Conference

Tentative Schedule:
Monday, March 7
Professional Development Seminars
8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Tuesday, March 8
Safety Sessions
7:00 a.m. - 4:30p.m.
Construction Expo (Sponsored by ASA Chicago)
9:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Call for Presentation Abstracts

Plans have begun for the Annual Construction Expo and Safety Day.   It is our pleasure to invite you to submit a proposal for presenting at this event once again being held at Drury Lane Oak Brook Terrace. The conference is scheduled for March 7 & 8, 2016.  March 7 will consist of a small amount of professional development sessions. These sessions will be 4 hours each and will run from 8 am – 12 pm. March 8 will feature a full day of shorter sessions that will run from 7:00 – 4:30 pm and an Expo sponsored by ASA Chicago.

Each year, participants have been very complimentary about our efforts to recruit superior speakers with timely, accurate and useful information..... speakers with the ability to deliver in an effective and interesting style. That’s why we are inviting you to submit an abstract.   If you are interested in submitting a proposal, please submit an abstract no later than October 16, 2015.  We need to get our registration materials out in a timely manner….so please pay close attention to the deadline date.

Your proposal should include:
q  Title of presentation or roundtable discussion
q  Name & titles of all presenters
q  Your name and contact information, including phone and email                                          
q  Suggested duration
q  Level of technicality -- basic, intermediate or advanced
q  1-2 descriptive paragraph for your session
q  Short bio for you and co-presenter(s), including prior speaking engagements

For those of you who have submitted in the past, there is no longer a form to fill out.  A simple email with the items above included will be sufficient.

We encourage you to pick a topic that will bring new and/or needed information to the attendees, and also one that you feel that you can deliver in an interesting presentation. The topics may range from basic to advanced. We ask that you categorize your topic so that we can make sure that we promote it to the right audience.

We look forward to hearing from you soon!

Please send your submittal no later than October 16, 2015 to:
Patti Romero, Business Manager, Construction Safety Council, 4415 W. Harrison Street, Suite 404, Hillside, IL, 60162 or fax to: 708-449-8604. You may also email to:

Monday, August 3, 2015

Construction Equipment Dangers - On the job Tool Box Talks

Construction Equipment used on construction jobs often creates dangerous conditions. This week's Tail Gate Safety Topic examines a few situations which should be watched for at all times.
Any moving equipment such as skip loaders, back hoes, trenchers, cranes, hi-lifts, trucks, you name it, should be respected and avoided. Don't just assume that the operator sees you. You could wind up injured or worse. And don't depend on hearing a horn or an alarm to warn you that moving equipment is near. You may not be able to hear the equipment's alarm over other construction noise.
When you see that equipment is traveling backwards keep out of the way and stand clear until the operator has completed his maneuver. Never cut across the path behind any unit while it is backing. You could easily trip and full under the equipment. For the same reason you should never ride on the running boards, steps or drawbar or any equipment, even for a short distance.
During backing, the operator should have the project foreman clear the area behind the unit and provide direction. No operator should back a piece of equipment into and area without someone clearing the area and giving signals.
Watch out for swinging counterweights on equipment such as cranes. There is often a pinch-point between the counterweights and some obstruction when the unit swings. Make sure there is enough room for workers to pass and if there is not - shut off the area to any access.
Never ride on or near material that is being transported by equipment. The load could shift and you can be thrown to the ground. Also, clearance may not allow for your position and you can be crushed between overhead or side obstructions.
If you must ride on equipment, make sure that all parts of your body are inside the unit, including your arms and legs. In addition, it at all possible, get off any portable scaffold or work platform while the unit is being moved. The time it takes to get off will be much less than the time lost if you fall or the unit tips over.
Never walk alongside moving equipment. Keep in the clear in case it slides or turns, or the load shifts.
When you are working near equipment operating in the vicinity of power lines, don't touch or come in contact with the frame of the unit or the load cables. There is always the chance that the boom of the unit may hit the power lines. Warn the operator and the foreman any time you see this possibility and follow their instructions.
Don't walk under loads on cranes and hoists. Always take the path that avoids danger.
Never clean, adjust, lubricate, repair or work on a machine that is in operation. Stop the machine before working on it and replace the guards as soon as it is done and before operation is resumed.
The safest this to do around construction equipment is keep away while the equipment is in operation. If you must be near the equipment, make sure the operator knows you are working nearby and stay alert. Keeping your mind on where you are in relation to the equipment will not only prevent injuries but could save your life. 

This information was provided by: Assurance Agency 

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