Cal/OSHA Compliance Advisor - The Practical Guide to Workplace Safety for California EmployersCal/OSHA Compliance Advisor
HomeContact UsFree E-ZineTell a FriendSearchMember Log-In
Cal-OSHA Safety Training for California Employers
About this Site
Editorial Review Board
Mission Statement
Site Tour
Subscribe To Our Feed
Most Recent Articles
Browse by Topic
Search
Online Exclusive
Webinars
Weekly E-Alert Articles
Quick Tips
Sample Policies
Checklists
Special Reports
Cal/OSH Decisions
Required Notices
Ask An Editor
Reference Links
Supervisor PDFs
Subscription Services

Account/Login Help
Contact Us
FAQs
Privacy Policy
Site Map
Terms of Use
Your Account
Our Guarantee
Text Size
Cal/OSHA vs. Fed/OSHA: A Comprehensive Guide To the Crucial Differences
Cal/OSHA Recordkeeping Made Easy




CER has received 14 Editorial Excellence Awards

A Publication of California Employer Resources
Cal/OSHA Compliance Advisor

Safety Compliance Advice and Best Practices for California Employers

Cal/OSHA Compliance Advisor helps safety professionals, business owners, and managers comply with California and federal safety regulations, keep workers safe, lower their
workers' comp costs, and avoid safety-related
fines and lawsuits.

Sign up for a Free 7-Day Trial

Featured Resources
Featured resource: Electronic device safe use policy
April 2015
Our cell phones, tablets, and laptops have become essential parts of our jobs. We use them to store safety data sheets and safe work procedures, measure sound levels, keep in contact with remote workers, and perform many other business-related functions. But if we're not careful how and when we use them, these devices might create a hazard by distracting us from work at critical moments. . . . more »

Featured resource: Sample return-to-work policy
March 2015
When employees are off work for a medical reason, whether work-related or not, their leave could stretch out much longer than expected and they might not return to work in a timely fashion. This isn't good for employers or employees. . . . more »

Featured resource: Preshift forklift inspection checklist
January 2015
Forklifts come with a lot of potential hazards and failure points. Operator training is critical, of course, but so is ensuring that the equipment itself is safe and in good working order. This preshift inspection checklist covers the basic inspection requirements found in the Cal/OSHA operating rules. . . . more »

Featured resource: Protect your holiday maintenance crew against 4 hazards
December 2014
Many manufacturing facilities shut down over the holidays, giving maintenance workers a chance to strip down facilities and machinery for heavy-duty annual rehabilitation. Your holiday maintenance crew could be exposed to hazards they don't routinely deal with. Before you turn them loose, remind them of these hazards and how to protect themselves. . . . more »

Enforcement: Employer agrees to pay $1 million fine; How LO/TO could have prevented tragedy
November 2014
On August 19, 2011, a knitting machine at the American Apparel factory in Garden Grove jammed. While 49-year-old Tuan Phan was inside the machine trying to clear the jam, it started up, crushing him. This wasn't the first time such an incident had occurred at the factory. . . . more »


Most Recent Articles
Online Exclusive: Will you be ready when the compliance officer arrives?
COCA Online Exclusive April 2015
When a Cal/OSHA compliance officer arrives at your workplace, it can come as a surprise. The agency is permitted to give employers advance notice of inspections only in certain limited situations. And . . . more »

NIOSH announces second annual construction "Fall Safety Stand-Down"
April 2015
NIOSH announces second annual construction "Fall Safety Stand-Down." The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)--in conjunction with partners including the Occupational Safety a . . . more »

Special Report included with this issue: Safety incentive programs: How to properly motivate safe behaviors
April 2015
Properly developed incentive programs can dramatically cut the number of workplace accidents and injuries, in turn cutting your insurance rates. In our new Special Report, we discuss how incentive pro . . . more »

Appeals Board decisions: Can you violate both LOTO and machine guarding standards at the same time?
April 2015
The lockout/tagout (LOTO) and machine guarding standards make an unusual pair. Both are intended to protect workers from the hazards of moving machinery, and they address the same hazards--but in different, task-specific ways. . . . more »

Best practices: Simulator training is even better than the real thing
April 2015
We have long imagined the potential of simulator-based training. In the 1982 movie "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan," for example, cadets at the fictional Starfleet Academy are tested in a crisis involving a damaged civilian spaceship in enemy territory--the Kobayashi Maru. The situation is set up to be a no-win scenario for the cadets, revealing how they might function under extreme stress. . . . more »

Injury prevention: Don't blink! Dealing with distractions in safety-critical operations
April 2015
The classic example of a distraction leading to a fatal error in a safety-critical situation is the teenage driver who crosses the center line on the road while texting and kills herself or someone else. But driving isn't the only safety-critical situation, and text messages aren't the only distractions. . . . more »

Trainer's handbook: Penetrating advice on chemical protective glove use and care
April 2015
A worker's hands are essential to many jobs--and vulnerable to many hazards. Chemical hazards in particular may damage the skin directly, causing rashes, allergic reactions, or burns, or they may be absorbed through the skin, causing systemic effects including narcosis (a state of stupor) and damage to specific organs and systems. . . . more »

Standards update: Heat illness prevention rule changes take effect May 1
April 2015
A few rule changes from California's Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board (OSHSB) take effect April 1. The most significant changes are those made to the heat illness prevention rules that were finalized in February. Ordinarily, those changes would go into effect on July 1, but the OSHSB has requested that the Office of Administrative Law (OAL), which sets effective dates, make this rule effective as of April 1, 2015, to fully cover this year's agricultural growing season. . . . more »

Wellness: How much sleep do workers need? New guidelines issued
April 2015
Americans have a love/hate relationship with sleep. We need more sleep, but we sacrifice it to the most casual of temptations--like late-night television and Internet browsing. We value sleep but not as much as we value getting to work on time, getting our morning workouts in, or going to the midnight opening of a new movie. Sleep is essential to our health and our functioning; sleep is also an interruption of the essential activities of our day. . . . more »

Featured resource: Electronic device safe use policy
April 2015
Our cell phones, tablets, and laptops have become essential parts of our jobs. We use them to store safety data sheets and safe work procedures, measure sound levels, keep in contact with remote workers, and perform many other business-related functions. But if we're not careful how and when we use them, these devices might create a hazard by distracting us from work at critical moments. . . . more »

Online Exclusive: Tips for working safely on mobile devices
COCA Online Exclusive March 2015
In the not-so-distant past, only the people in the front office used computers on the job. But these days, all kinds of workers--from the manufacturing floor to the construction worksite--regularly work on laptops, tablets, and smartphones. . . . more »

Cal/OSHA cites two companies for electrocution fatalities resulting from lack of precautions
March 2015
Cal/OSHA has cited Five Star Plastering (based in Laguna Hills) and Winlup Painting Inc. (based in Santa Monica) for safety violations that contributed to incidents involving contact with high-voltage . . . more »

NIOSH finds gaps in protection against high-level disinfectants
March 2015
Results of a survey conducted by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) indicate that precautionary measures to minimize worker exposure to . . . more »

Occupational noise: Now hear this! New research connects increased noise levels with increased injury risk
March 2015
Employers have long known that high levels of workplace noise pose a risk of noise-induced hearing loss for workers. Recent research has also linked chronic exposure to occupational noise with sleep disorders and poor job performance as well as increased risk of high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, and benign tumors along the vestibular cochlear nerve. Now there's even more bad news for employers with noisy operations. . . . more »

Heat illness prevention: Acclimatize your outdoor workers as summer nears
March 2015
Unlike Cal/OSHA, federal OSHA doesn't have a heat illness prevention standard, but that doesn't mean the agency doesn't concern itself with heat-related illnesses. . . . more »

Trainer's handbook: Are your workers equipped for any emergency?
March 2015
Most workplaces have an array of emergency equipment available, much of it required by one safety and health standard or another. Fire extinguishers and automated external defibrillators (AEDs), first-aid kits, eyewashes, and safety showers--whatever the possible emergency, you should have the right equipment on hand to respond quickly. . . . more »

Return to work: Get workers back on the job with light-duty assignments
March 2015
Is your workforce ailing? Maybe one employee who's out hurt his back cleaning gutters at home, another went ahead and had that elective foot surgery she'd been putting off, and another is out on a workers' compensation claim after slipping in mud. . . . more »

Appeals Board decisions: Did missing piece of employer's LOTO program cause worker's missing finger?
March 2015
Your lockout/tagout program is intended to prevent injuries when a machine or piece of equipment moves unexpectedly. These injuries can occur when a worker places a part of his or her body into a machine's point of operation, power transmission apparatus, or other moving parts or areas that could unexpectedly release hazardous energy. . . . more »

Hazard identification: Too much sitting is bad--but so is too much standing! How to mix up the workday
March 2015
It's been all over the news in recent years: Americans sit too much, and it's killing us. We sit in our cars, we sit at the office, and we sit in front of our computers, television screens, video games, tablets, and phones--and while we're sitting, our metabolisms are changing. . . . more »

Featured resource: Sample return-to-work policy
March 2015
When employees are off work for a medical reason, whether work-related or not, their leave could stretch out much longer than expected and they might not return to work in a timely fashion. This isn't good for employers or employees. . . . more »

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 »


Featured Articles
Featured Resource: This Is a Fire Drill … Checklist
April 2012
When was your last fire or emergency evacuation drill? If more than six months ago, it's time to think about staging another. Careful planning and evaluation can help you get the most out of your drills. Use our checklist to help with both. . . . more »

Compliance Checklist: Lockout/Tagout
COCA Online Exclusive
Employers whose lockout/tagout programs are incomplete risk serious injuries to workers, and steep fines from DOSH. Use this checklist to make sure that the basic elements of your lockout/tagout program are in place. . . . more »

Infection Control Checklist
Updated November 2010
Antibiotic-resistant microorganisms are becoming increasingly common. In part, this is due to the misuse and overuse of antibiotics, which tends to breed resistant strains. Another factor is the spread of these organisms from the immunocompromised populations where they first . . . more »

 Tip of the Week
Sign up for our free
Weekly E-Alert

View E-Alert Archives

 TOPICS
Most Popular
Complete Topic List
Best Practices
Emergency Planning
Equipment and Process
Haz Subst & Mat
Health
IIPPs
Personnel Safety
Safety Administration
Trainer's Handbook
Transportation
Free Report: Safety Recordkeeping
Understanding the Ins and Outs of Cal/OSHA's Recordkeeping Rules 
Download Now»
 TESTIMONIALS
Here's what our subscribers are saying ...


"I enjoy your publication very much--one of the best out there! Keep up the fine work."

Richard C., CSP, ARM
Senior VP
Aon Risk Services,
Construction Services Group



"Cal/OSHA Compliance Advisor keeps our very small company up to date on safety. Reminds us monthly to meet and discuss safety issues."

Peter M.
Cellarmaster/Safety Director
Robert Craig Wine Cellars
Angwin, CA



"Your e-alert service is very good with a lot of useful information. Keep up the good work... I really enjoy getting them."
Barry Fach
C & E Vision Services, Inc.