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Cal/OSHA Compliance Advisor articles

Articles from current issue of the Cal/OSHA Compliance Advisor monthly newsletter are listed below.

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Online Exclusive: 7 common causes of workplace fires
COCA Online Exclusive February 2015
Each year, fire breaks out at some 70,000 U.S. workplaces, killing an average of 200 employees, injuring thousands, and causing billions of dollars in property damage. Maine Municipal Association's Risk Management Services has identified the following common workplace fire hazards and some simple strategies that can keep your facility safe. . . . more »
CDC finds heat stress hospitalizations on the rise
February 2015
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has found a 2 percent to 5 percent increase in the rate of hospitalizations for heat stress in 20 states, including California, for the period of 2 . . . more »
DHS and HSS issue mass chemical decontamination guidance for first responders
February 2015
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), in conjunction with the Department of Health and Human Services (HSS), recently published Patient Decontamination in . . . more »
Appeals Board decisions: Employer burned by scattered documents; Do you know where your written plan is?
February 2015
Cal/OSHA is serious about enforcing its heat illness prevention standard, General Industry Safety Orders (GISO) Section 3395. Sacramento-based Rosendin Electric discovered this the hard way during a "heat sweep" the agency conducted on August 15, 2012. . . . more »
Trainer's handbook: Do your workers have a healthy heart? Teach them cardiac health basics
February 2015
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States. Many factors can affect a person's cardiac health, including his or her weight and overall health status, genetic heritage, and behaviors like diet, exercise, and smoking. . . . more »
Fall prevention: Prevent falls from height--Know your general industry and construction ropes
February 2015
The final month of 2014 was a notable one for falls in California. A contractor at a San Mateo home fell from a ladder on December 8 and later died. A worker at University of Southern California Medical Center in Los Angeles was checking a rooftop air handling unit on December 11 when he fell into it and was killed. Another worker survived a fall from a ladder at a San Gabriel construction site but was seriously injured. . . . more »
Emergency preparedness: Long hours put emergency responders at risk; Tips for employers
February 2015
Emergency workers who deploy to work at disaster sites caused by weather, earthquakes, epidemics, and other catastrophic events often put in much longer than 8-hour shifts. Although workers in these fields are generally highly committed to their jobs and find the jobs rewarding in ways that make long hours seem bearable, they are at substantially increased risk from fatigue. . . . more »
Ergonomics: NIOSH offers new guidance on injury prevention for wholesale workers
February 2015
Overexertion injuries account for approximately 30 percent of all occupational injuries, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. In some sectors of the wholesale and retail trades--among freight, stock, and material movers and laborers--overexertion injuries to the lower back, shoulders, and upper limbs may account for as many as 60 percent of all lost-time injuries. . . . more »
Hazard identification: Fatalities highlight need for recent Cal/OSHA tree work guidelines
February 2015
Jimmy Herrera had worked as a landscaper for more than 10 years when he picked up a side job trimming palm fronds in downtown San Diego. While he was trimming one day in November 2014, the cut palm fronds collapsed, trapping Herrera against the tree in a deadly crushing hug. That same month, landscaper Ezequiel Yepez was trimming trees in La Habra when his aluminum pole trimmer contacted a power line, electrocuting him. . . . more »
Featured resource: Ergonomic hand tool analysis checklist
February 2015
Most ergonomic injuries result from the cumulative trauma of repeated forceful exertion, awkward postures, contact stress, vibration, bending, or lifting. Injuries that occur in larger muscle groups and joints (for example, the back, shoulder, and neck) are likely to be full-body exposures. But the same problems can occur on a smaller scale and lead to ergonomic hand injuries. . . . more »
Online Exclusive: Sample ergonomic injury prevention policy
COCA Online Exclusive January 2014
Ergonomic injuries are the most common nonfatal lost workday injury by an overwhelming margin. Of about 1.2 million nonfatal injuries recorded by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2012, 443,560 fell into this category. Most of these were repetitive stress injuries (a smaller number were slip-and-fall injuries). . . . more »
Cal/OSHA cites Disney Construction for worker fatalities
January 2015
Cal/OSHA recently cited Disney Construction, Inc., of Burlingame, $106,110 for serious violations related to the deaths of two employees on May 30, 2014. The employees fell 80 feet from a crane-hoiste . . . more »
Special Report included with this issue: What's new for 2015: Workplace developments affecting California employers--And how to comply
January 2015
Over the past year, California has seen many legal developments that should help it maintain its reputation as one of the most employee-friendly states in the country. Governor Brown, for example, sig . . . more »
Health and wellness: New study identifies 4 strategies that work for shift workers
January 2015
Shift work has been associated with a number of adverse health effects, from heart disease to cancer. Employers have tried many strategies to help shift workers stay safe, well rested, and healthy, but these strategies have fallen more into the "common sense" category than into the "scientifically validated best practices" category. . . . more »
Forklifts: Fatalities emphasize the need to elevate forklift safety
January 2015
A forklift usually has a driver's seat, an accelerator, a brake, a steering mechanism, and a horn--but don't let workers mistake a forklift for a car or truck. They're very different vehicles, and forklifts are a lot more dangerous to operate. A rash of recent fatalities in California and elsewhere illustrates forklift hazards and the need to elevate forklift safety to a priority in your workplace. . . . more »
Hazard identification: Are your workers at risk from Ebola? Cal/OSHA guidance can help
January 2015
On March 23, 2014, the World Health Organization (WHO) received a report of an Ebola virus disease outbreak in the West African nation of Guinea--the first report of Ebola virus disease since January 2013. . . . more »
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