Tuesday, September 2, 2014

U.K.'s Ladder Association Launches "Idiots on Ladders" Photo Contest

Courtesy Ladder Associations
Each year, in conjunction with its Ladder Exchange program, Ladder Association holds its "Idiots on Ladders" photo contest. The group is again encouraging people to submit the worst pictures of ladder use they can find to show just how dangerous ladder misuse can be.

The Ladder Exchange program lets people trade in old ladders for safe new ones at a discount while the photo contest highlights how people often misuse the equipment. Administered through the group's Facebook page, the photo that receives the most "likes" by the end of December is named the year’s biggest Idiot on a Ladder.

“Most people these days understand what makes ladder use safe or unsafe. For 2 years now we have been running [this] contest, and each time pictures have come flooding in," says Cameron Clow, chair of the Ladder Association. "That shows that the public knows when people are doing something on a ladder they shouldn’t, and are shocked by it, but it also shows that misusing a ladder is far too common."

To enter a picture, simply post it onto the group's Facebook page or email it to Michael Fern.

OSHA Asks for Feedback on Injury Reporting Rule

OSHA is currently seeking comment on a proposed rule that would require employers to regularly submit electronic worker injury and illness records. The rule as proposed would only effect employers currently required to keep such records.

The data collected under this rule would become publicly available. OSHA’s rationale is that the move would motivate employers to improve safety efforts. However, some stakeholders have expressed concern that in order to save face, organizations might intentionally adopt practices to discourage injury reporting, by way of either retaliation or “unreasonable” reporting requirements.

To counteract this potential issue, OSHA is seeking comment until Oct. 14 to determine what provisions should be added to make discouraging employee reporting a violation.

FallTech Releases New Fall Protection Equipment Safety Videos

FallTech has released a series of instructional videos highlighting fall protection equipment. The first video shows how to inspect and don a full body harness and gives examples to ensure proper usage.


The second video explains how to check your fall protection lanyard and highlights the warning signs of an unsafe lanyard.


The last video shows how to inspect a self-retracting device and shows how to test the device prior to use.


To learn more about fall protection, be sure read the ANSI/ASSE Z359 Fall Protection Code Definitions & Nomenclature Used for Fall Protection & Fall Arrest standard as well as Qualification & Verification Testing of Fall Protection Products standard. You can also view a Tech Brief on the standard here.

OSHA & NIOSH Release Best Practices For Protecting Temporary Workers

OSHA and NIOSH have published recommended practices for staffing agencies and host employers to optimally protect temporary workers on the job.

The publication focuses on ensuring that temporary workers receive the same training and protection that existing workers receive. Suggestions include contracts that clearly define a temporary worker's tasks and the safety and health responsibilities of each employer, as well as continual contact between staffing agencies and temporary workers to ensure that the host employer fulfills its responsibilities.

Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Dr. David Michaels announced the publication at the Voluntary Protection Programs Participants' Association annual conference in National Harbor, MD.

"An employer's commitment to the safety of temporary workers should not mirror these workers' temporary status," Michaels says. "Whether temporary or permanent, all workers always have a right to a safe and healthy workplace. Staffing agencies and the host employers are joint employers of temporary workers and both are responsible for providing and maintaining safe working conditions. Our new recommended practices publication highlights this joint responsibility."

Friday, August 29, 2014

NHTSA Launches Web Tool to Search for Recalls by VIN

Vehicle owners don't always know whether their car or motorcycle has been affected by a recall. Using a new online tool from National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), consumers can enter a vehicle identification number (VIN) to find out if a specific vehicle still needs to be repaired as part of a safety recall in the last 15 years.

"Just as every single automaker should never hesitate to recall a defective vehicle, consumers should never hesitate to get their recalled vehicle fixed," says NHTSA Deputy Administrator David Friedman. "By making individual VIN searches readily available, we're providing another service to consumers--the peace of mind knowing that the vehicle they own, or that they are thinking of buying or renting, is free of safety defects."