Aerial Lifts - Working at Elevations Injuries from falls are one of the most common and severe workplace accidents. Employees must understand how to identify fall hazards and the ways they can protect themselves. Areas Where Fall Hazards Exist: Any height greater than 4 feet is considered a hazard and must be protected. This includes: Roofs Floor Openings              · Loading Docks               · Work Platforms   Ways to Protect Employees from Fall Hazards: The most effective way to protect employees from falls is by eliminating the hazard. Passive systems such as guardrails and covers remove the employee’s exposure to the hazard.   Passive Systems Administrative Controls Active Systems Guardrails Covers Boundary Lines Signs / Access Control Fall...

Health & Safety - Heat Stress Disorders Although summer heat is the largest cause of heat stress disorder, it may also occur when workers are exposed to confined areas such as pipelines, shipboard spaces with limited ventilation, and any confined area involving welding or cutting. Symptoms The symptoms of heat stress disorders are very slow to start, but increase in intensity if precautions are not taken. The onset of the initial symptoms are mild and usually involve headaches, thirst, and tiredness. Heat stress can move to heat stroke, a life-threatening medical emergency, quickly when the body's natural cooling system breaks down and causes the...

Sleep Deprivation Whether it’s due to workloads, or working side jobs, the result is the same – sleep deprivation. Many workers are arriving on the job overly tired or sleep-deprived. Sleep deprivation or fatigue can affect a worker’s manual dexterity, reaction time, and alertness. Worker fatigue or lack of sleep can affect judgment and safety. And workers aren’t the only ones suffering the consequences of sleepiness on the job it’s costing employers money and, in some cases, putting the public’s safety at risk. Studies show that workers are not only getting less sleep than they should; they’re getting less than they used...

Personal Ergonomics What is Ergonomics? Ergonomics is the science of matching tools and tasks to the work environment. In other words, ergonomics tries to make your job fit you, rather than making you fit your job. The purpose of ergonomics is to reduce or eliminate injuries and illnesses that can result from stress on muscles, nerves, and joints. These types of injuries have been common to workplaces for a long time, but safety standards concerning them are new. If OSHA finds that poor ergonomics is a threat to employee well-being, it can cite a company for violating its duty to provide...

Safe Housekeeping Most of you probably have house cleaning responsibilities at home. For some of you, it's a regular weekly chore. Whatever the case may be, you'll agree that good housekeeping practices are important at home. However, what we sometimes overlook is that good housekeeping is a key duty on the job, too. The orderly arrangement of work areas is vital to the safety of all workers, regardless of whether they are involved with machines and tools or with appliances and furniture. It's a fact that approximately 6,000 persons are killed on the job annually in the United States, and an estimated...

Ladder Safety Tips We have all worked with ladders at some time in our lives, either at work or at home. The following are some tips that may make your interaction with ladders less hazardous: Before using a ladder, inspect it for faults, such as broken rungs or rails. If it is an extension ladder, inspect the pulleys, ropes and locks for excessive wear. Also, check the footings and pads to make sure they still provide a non-skid surface. If any defect is found, the ladder should be tagged unsafe and taken out of service. If it cannot be fixed, make...

Avoid Improper Drum Handling Improper drum handling and barrels can result in severe injuries. These include painful back sprains, smashed toes and fingers, or exposure to hazardous chemicals if the contents are leaking. Proper work practices can minimize your risk of injury, so consider the following tips. Prior to handling the drum, read the label on the drum and look for symbols, words or other marks which indicate if its contents are hazardous, corrosive, toxic or flammable. If the drum isn't labeled, consider the contents hazardous until they are positively identified. Look around the drum to see if it is leaking....

Office Safety - Potential Hazards You may think that since you work in an office you don't have to worry about office safety. However, offices can become dangerous because people don't anticipate the potential hazards. Studies show that over one-fourth of office injuries are caused by falls. One-third of the falls incurred by women are due to wearing high heels, which make falls more likely. Consider wearing lower, wider heels. Other things that can cause falls are spills on floors, torn carpets or exposed carpet seams, electrical cords running across the floor, open desk or file drawers, boxes or supplies stored in...

Cold Weather Hazards Of Propane Fueled Vehicles Propane is a gas that is turned into a liquid when stored in pressurized cylinders. You should be aware that as the temperature of the fuel tank rises, the liquid fuel expands which increases pressure inside the tank. In cold weather, this could result in a fire or explosion if a propane-powered vehicle with more than 80% liquid fuel in the fuel tank is brought into a heated building from outside. The increased air temperature in the shop causes increased pressure inside the fuel tank. This will open the safety relief valve if the...

Acetone Use & Care Acetone, also called dimethyl ketone, is one of the ketone group of solvents that also includes methyl ethyl ketone. Mechanics, painters, and fiberglass workers are frequent users of acetone for various purposes in the shop, and many people are familiar with its pleasant sweet-smelling odor. Acetone is an excellent solvent for oils and greases. It is often used in the electronics industry for degreasing and cleaning of precision electronic parts. It is also used in the formulation of lacquers, rubber cements, cleaning fluids, and paint removers, as well as the manufacture of methacrylic and epoxy resins. Acetone...