Has your company been working towards compliance with the FSMA rules and regulations? In 2011 the Food Safety Modernization Act was signed into law and has been the most significant reform to food safety laws in years. An article written by Dr. Jennifer McEntire for Food Manufacturing Magazine explores some of the re-purposed rules that may come to pass in 2015 and how to comply with them.
One of the main purposes of an organization is to make a profit. The organization benefits and employees benefit as well. The question is this, is your company too concerned with return on investment? Will they ignore safety and put employees at risk in order to earn that short term profit? Is your company ROI (return on investment) focused or ROS (return on safety) focused?
The ASSE has created a valuable website that is an excellent resource for companies concerned with risk assessment. The Risk Assessment Institute website provides resources such as assessment flow charts, metrics, standards, research, and case studies to assist any reader in helping their facilities to stay ahead of injuries.
According to the latest report put out by the Bureau of Labor and Statistics the number of workplace injuries and illnesses in the private sector are on the decline. The report dated December 4, 2014 stated that a little more than 3 million nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses were reported in 2013 and that continues an 11 year trend (with the exception of 2012) of steadily decreasing numbers. Unfortunately 3 million reported injuries and illnesses is still a massive number of people hurt or sick. However the good news with this number is that even though we are in a state of economic growth these numbers are still decreasing. The downward trend is encouraging news to health and safety professionals nationwide.
Did you help implement something new and effective this past year in the area of safety management? If so the ASSE wants to know about it. For the second year, Cinta’s Corporation is sponsoring a reward of $3000 along with an engraved plaque to an individual who brought innovation and creativity to their workplace that made a difference in safety management. Both ASSE members and non-members are welcome to apply.
Maintaining and improving manufacturing facilities is a big job. Making safety improvements may seem daunting but by changing a few things gradually, large improvements and great strides in safety can be achieved.
Ladder misuse can be one of the easiest safety problems to spot as it can be pretty obvious when a ladder is being used incorrectly. A group in the UK called The Ladder Association educates companies and individuals on the correct and safe way to use ladders. During their annual Ladder Exchange the group helps organizations trade in their old unsafe ladders for new ladders at a discounted price. The Ladder Associate has helped take 1000’s of unsafe ladders out of circulation. The Ladder Exchange program is currently collecting photos from around the world of individuals misusing ladders. The worse and most unsafe ladder misuse photos are being posted to their Facebook page in hopes to discourage this unsafe behavior. When the contest is over a winner will be chosen based on the amount of comments or “likes” on the photo.
Rules, signs, checklists, compliance: all important aspects of work place safety. While these things may get complex and must be regulated by management there is one very important thing that employees themselves can do consistently on a daily basis that will help keep the workplace safe: show concern for others. The phrase “my brother’s keeper” is a well know phrase that simply implicates that we not only should not only be keeping our selves safe but keeping other safe as well. John Drebinger, a safety speaker, addressed EHS professionals at the EHS’ Today’s Safety Leadership Conference about teaching employees to use two key phrases to help keep team members safe.
The State of Michigan is serious about helping businesses make health and safety improvements. MIOSHA has $500,000 in available funds that will be used for matching grants awarded to businesses needing new safety equipment. According to the State of MI website the MIOSHA Safety and Health Improvement Program (MiSHIP) will award employers that qualify a dollar-for-dollar match (up to $5000) for projects that reduce injury and illness risks to their employees.
OSHA recently announced a revision to their rule on reporting severe injuries. The new rule, effective January 1, 2015, states that OSHA must be notified with eight hours if a work related death occurs and within 24 hours if a work related hospitalization, amputation or loss of an eye occurs. This is a change from the current rule where eye loss, amputation and single worker hospitalization were not included. Currently if a death occurs or if three or more employees are hospitalized an employer must let OSHA know.