Update from OSHA Spokesperson on Publication of Upcoming Confined Spaces in Construction Standard (1926.1200)

[Note: This is an old article written in 2013. If you’re looking for current information about the brand-new (2015) confined spaces in construction rule, click here].

Earlier this year, OSHA released its Unified Agenda, which listed a new Confined Spaces in Construction regulation as something to look for in 2013. The Unified Agenda listed July as the planned date of publication (it’s July now), but the new regulation isn’t out yet. We followed up with the OSHA contact listed on the Unified Agenda to get an update, and an OSHA Spokesperson was kind enough to get back to us with answers. (We’d like to thank the OSHA personnel who worked to get us a reply for their time, effort, and information—getting a regulation finalized can’t be easy.)

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HazCom 2012, GHS, and the Labeling Systems: GHS, DOT, NFPA, and HMIS

One question people keep asking is how the new GHS-compliant shipping labels required by OSHA’s new Hazard Communication 2012 regulation will affect the use of other labeling systems, including the labeling system required by the Department of Transportation (DOT) and the commonly known National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and Hazardous Materials Identification System (HMIS) labels.

The question is even more interesting and timelier because OSHA recently published a Brief that announced they plan to make a small change to the new HazCom regulation involving DOT labels.

So without further ado, let’s get down to business and explain what’s what.

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10 OSHA-Based Word Games: Great For Fun Safety Meeting Activities

10-osha-safety-word-games-imageIn this article, we’ve collected ten free safety word games for you and have even created a way for you to download copies of all ten games in one click.

The word games are based on the standards that show up again and again on OSHA’s Top Ten Violations list. So, it’s worth knowing these terms. Plus, the games are fun to play.

Each of the games is based on terms that OSHA defines in each of those standards. So they’re a good way to get more familiar with OSHA’s definitions. (By the way, this is one of 2 sets of safety-based word games we offer–the other set of safety training word games includes terms and concepts from our online safety courses, so you may want to check that one out too).

Remember that to play any of the games, you’ve got to click one of the ten links below. Also, remember that if you want to download free copies of the games, you’ll download a zipped folder in a format called SCORM that you can then import into a SCORM-compliant LMS and then play the games from the LMS (you can’t download and then play the games without using an LMS).

If you’re going to go with the download option, read more about how that works below and then scroll to the bottom of the article to click the download button.
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Free HazCom 2012/GHS Labels and Pictograms Word Game

Here’s a free Hazard Communication word game for you to play.

You can play it here, directly from our blog, any time you want. Or you can download your own free copy, import it into your SCORM-compliant LMS, and play it from there anytime you want (read more about that option below if you’re interested).

Hope you enjoy this and have fun. Let us know if you have any questions.

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Mandatory Safety Training and a Bit of Humor

Mandatory Training and Humor Image

In this article, we’ll take a look at safety training and humor. And we’ll do it by talking about flying to Hawaii. Not bad, huh?

In an earlier part of my life, I flew to Hawaii a lot.

I had a friend who was the Artistic Director for the Honolulu Theater for Youth in Honolulu, and because he had to travel to stage plays, I often was “saddled” with dog- and house-sitting responsibilities. Rough life, huh? Living in Hawaii was great, and I even got to surf the famous Pipeline surf break on the legendary North Shore. Never got to surf Waimea Bay on a big day, though.

On one flight from Oahu to San Francisco, several hours after the plane took off, the captain announced that there was a mechanical problem and we were returning to Honolulu. When I heard that, I was a little alarmed, and so I did four things:

  • First, I looked at the map to figure out how far from land we were. We were basically in the middle of the ocean.
  • Next, I grabbed the safety information card in my seat pocket and read it: where are the emergency exits, how do the doors open, and just exactly how does that seat cushion double as a flotation device?
  • Then, I tucked my little bag of peanuts into my shirt pocket. I figured if the plane crashed, I’d eat them on the way down before we went into the drink, giving me a little energy to use while I was wading thousands of miles from land.
  • And finally, I took a nap, on the assumption that if I was going to be paddling in the middle of the Pacific Ocean for hours, I might as well rest up first.

My point is that before I pulled the safety information card out, I didn’t know the critical safety information I would need if the plane went down. Why’s that? Because I didn’t listen to the safety information talk or watch the safety video before the flight took off. I blew it off, maybe reading a book or staring vacantly out the window. Odds are you’ve done it too; we all have. Right?

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OSHA Publishes New ‘Hazard Communication Standard: Labels and Pictograms’ Brief

OSHA’s been busy releasing new documents about Hazard Communication 2012, the newly revised Hazard Communication Standard that has been “aligned” with the Globally Harmonized System (GHS).

In a previous post, we discussed a recently published Fact Sheet that focuses on an employer’s requirements to train workers about certain elements of the new regulation before December 1, 2013. In this post, we’ll discuss highlights of the new OSHA Brief titled Hazard Communication Standard: Labels and Pictograms.

Our analysis? There’s one significant change that everyone should know about and then some interesting stuff that we’ve called out. We’ll address them in order. First, the change, which we’ll cover in detail. And second, we’ll point out some of the interesting stuff (which you may already know about) and let you know where to find it in the Brief if you want to read more.

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OSHA Publishes New HazCom 2012/GHS Alignment Training Requirements Fact Sheet

As you probably know, OSHA is revising its old Hazard Communication 1994 Standard and has created a new Hazard Communication 2012 Standard. The new HazCom 2012 Standard is “aligned” with the Globally Harmonized System, also known as GHS.

You may also know that employers have an obligation to train their employees about certain aspects of the new GHS-aligned HazCom 2012 Standard before December 1, 2013 (this year). This deadline is mentioned on OSHA’s website on a page titled Effective Dates. And it has also been the subject of one of our earlier blog posts explaining What to Know and Do for HazCom 2012/GHS During 2013.

But, you’d be forgiven if you didn’t know that OSHA recently published a Fact Sheet titled December 1st, 2013 Training Requirements for the Revised Hazard Communication Standard. That’s because it’s brand new. We just recently learned of it ourselves.

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Electrical General Requirements Word Game (1910.303)

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As a kid, one of my favorite villains on the Amazing Spiderman was Electro, a walking, talking electrical hazard. Creating Electro as an arch-villain seems appropriate, because electricity can present many hazards at home and at work. And apparently, some people are either not aware of these hazards or are not taking them seriously enough, because the Electrical, General Requirements standard often appears on OSHA’s list of most commonly cited violations.

In this post, we’ve got a fun word game that lets you test your knowledge of electrical terms related to 1910.303 (the words and definitions themselves come from 1910.399, where all definitions for the subpart are listed). Hope you enjoy this one!

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Lockout Tagout Word Game (Control of Hazardous Energy 1910.147)

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What do you do when there’s a hazard?

As any horror movie aficionado will tell you, you lock the hazard out (although discriminating horror-movie watchers may remember that strategy didn’t work so well in The Shining).

But I digress. When it comes to hazardous energy, you definitely want to lock it out and tag it out before working on a machine or equipment. As we all know from OSHA’s Control of Hazardous Energy-Lockout/Tagout regulation (1910.147).

In this article, we’ve got a fun lockout/tagout word game to help you remember all that. You can play it online from this blog post as often as you want. We’ve even set up an option so you can download a free copy for yourself.

Good luck with the game. Or, as the French would say, bon chance!

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Four Ways to Prepare for Heat Stress at Work (Before it’s Too Late)

In some parts of the country, the mercury is already skyrocketing up the thermometer. A quick look at today’s weather map shows about half the country with temps in the 80s or 90s.

It’s important to be aware of hot weather because workers can suffer serious problems and even die when working in high temperatures. So what can you do as an employer or supervisor to protect your workers? Well, one thing you can do is be aware of the hazard and know how to lessen the risk.

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