Racking and Storage Safety

Keeping your pallet racking safe is vitally important. In addition to your annual rack safety inspection by a trained inspector, you should carry out regular internal inspections at set intervals (weekly, bi-weekly, monthly etc). But what should you check for? This blog post will go into detail about how to keep your pallet racking safe!

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Daily Inspection and Maintenance Required for Overhead Cranes

When using an overhead crane for material handling applications, having a preventative maintenance program in place is IMPERATIVE. This maintenance program should be centered on crane manufacturers recommendations, and based on an effective and thorough safety and inspection program that is conducted on a regular basis.

Continue reading “Daily Inspection and Maintenance Required for Overhead Cranes”

Working at Heights Training Deadline – NOW EXTENDED to October 1, 2017

In Ontario, ALL workers who use fall protection on a construction project MUST complete an approved working at heights program by October 1, 2017. This includes workers who met the fall protection training requirements of the Construction Projects Regulation prior to April 1, 2015.

ATTENTION – Working at Heights Training Deadline Has now Been Extended to – October 1, 2017

In Ontario, ALL workers who use fall protection on a construction project MUST complete an approved working at heights program by October 1,2017. Training must be conducted when workers are exposed to a fall hazard as defined by Section 26.2 of O.Reg. 213/91 – Construction Projects.  This includes workers who met the fall protection training requirements of the Construction Projects Regulation prior to April 1, 2015.

As of April 1, 2015, employers must ensure that certain workers complete a working at heights training program that has been approved by the Chief Prevention Officer (CPO) and delivered by a CPO approved training provider before they can work at heights.  For a list of approved training providers that have been approved by the Chief Prevention Officer as meeting the working at heights training program and provider standards click HERE.

The training requirement is for workers on construction projects who use any of the following methods of fall protection: travel restraint systems, fall restricting systems, fall arrest systems, safety nets and work belts or safety belts.

Workers who have already received training that meets section 26.2 of the Construction regulation (213/91) had two years to complete a working a heights training program. This two-year transition period began in April 1, 2015 and the deadline of October 1,2017 is quickly approaching.

This training requirement is in the Occupational Health and Safety Awareness and Training Regulation, and is in addition to training requirements under the Construction Regulation. To review the Construction projects, click HERE.

What Does a Working at Heights Training Program Entail?

  • The Program Standard requires that a working at heights course include two modules: basic theory and practical.
    • Basic Theory Module must be at least 3 hours in duration.
    • Practical Module must be at least 3.5 hours in duration.
  • Written test – 75% passing grade
  • Hands-on test – a satisfactory demonstration
  • Training will be valid for a period of 3 years.
  • After completing both modules, the employer must supplement the training program with additional information, instruction, and training on workplace-specific policies, procedures, hazards, and equipment related to working at heights.

How Does This Affect YOU?

Do your employees all have fall adequate fall protection training?

Does your employer enforce having fall protection training?

Does the company working on your construction project enforce having fall protection training?

Data for this blog post was found here:

https://www.labour.gov.on.ca/english/hs/topics/heights.php

 

March is Eye Injury Awareness Month

If your employees are exposed to hazardous chemicals, it is IMPERATIVE that you do everything you can to ensure that your emergency eye wash stations meet the required safety standards to protect workers. Chemical eye injuries are a painful and frightening experience that may leave a person BLINDED for life and should be AVOIDED at all costs.

Did you know that over 2,000 eye injuries occur on job sites daily and roughly 10% of them require missed days to recover? OR that of the total amount of work-related eye injuries, 10 to 20% will result in temporary or permanent vision loss in the affected employees? If your employees are exposed to hazardous chemicals, it is IMPERATIVE that you do everything you can to ensure that your emergency eye wash stations meet the required safety standards in order to protect your employees. Chemical eye injuries are a painful and frightening experience that may leave a person BLINDED for life and should be AVOIDED at all costs.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has two different types of regulations, general and specific, which apply to emergency eye wash station equipment which are designed in order to promote eye safety under certain work conditions. The first is a general requirement for eye wash stations. The second is determined based upon the industry which your business operates in. OSHA’s general regulation is applicable to all facilities that require the installation of eye wash station equipment as a form of first aid, it is contained in 29 CFR 1910.151. It states that:

 “…where the eyes or body of any person may be exposed to injurious corrosive materials, suitable facilities for quick drenching or flushing of the eyes and body shall be provided within the work area for immediate emergency use.”

This blog post will go over 10 tips to ensure that YOUR eye was stations meet the REQUIRED safety standards:

  1. Don’t block access. AVOID storing anything in front of or below an eye wash unit that could block an injured employees’s ability to stand comfortably or reach the station.
  2. Don’t hold the unit at an angle. If the unit is held on an angle it can INTERFERE with the correct flow of flushing fluid, which may result in an injured employee having to stand in an uncomfortable position to flush properly for up to 20 minutes.
  3. Keep the doors open. NEVER place an emergency eye wash station behind a closed or even worse locked door. Even though the station may not be used on a regular basis, when it is needed your employees vision is on the line and every second matters.
  4. Fill the unit properly. According to ANSI, the unit MUST be filled with flushing fluid or pre-packed fluid provided by the manufacturer. Avoid errors when mixing flushing fluid by always following manufacturers instructions.
  5. Watch the unit’s temperature. It is imperative that the flushing fluid never become too hot or too cold. Flushing eyes with extremely hot or ice cold solution can cause further damage to an already injured eye. According to ANSI fluid temperature must be ‘TEPID’. Tepid is defined at between 60°F (16°C) and 100°F (38°C). However, in circumstances where a chemical reaction is accelerated by flushing fluid temperature, a facilities safety/health advisor should be consulted to determine the optimum water temperature for each application.
  6. Install the unit correctly. NEVER install an eyewash unit without carefully following the manufacturers instructions. Being that stations vary, each one will have specific installation instructions to ensure proper performance. For example, installation height, the rate of fluid flow, and required spray pattern to name a few.
  7. Don’t alter or tamper with the unit. It is imperative that manufacturers instructions are ALWAYS followed. Things such as re-routing hoses or changing nozzles will compromise the unit’s performance.
  8. Keep in mind the unit’s shelf life. ALWAYS avoid using expired flushing fluid. Like any standing water, eye wash fluid has the ability to grow bacteria that is harmful to eyes. Ensure that you have a designated person to check the unit’s expiration dates and to refill/replace fluid as needed. According to ANSI Z358.1-2009, weekly flushing is required for plumbed stations, every three to six months for tank-style fluid stations and every two to three years for sealed-fluid cartridges and bottles.
  9. Clean thoroughly after use. Any lingering cleaning chemicals or cleaning particles could HARM the next user’s eyes. When the wrong chemicals come into contact, the fluid may turn brown or another colour and coloured fluid is NEVER usable. Never forget to clean, disinfect and completely dry the unit after each activation, this includes nozzles, hoses and nozzle covers.
  10. Do not cover the unit. Covering the unit with a makeshift cover like a plastic bag to keep dust or particles out can hinder an injured employees’ ability to properly activate the unit in a single motion. Preventing them to start the flow in one second or less which, is required by ANSI/OSHA.

By understanding how to use emergency eye wash stations properly, your facility can ENSURE greater workplace eye safety. Eye are one of the most vulnerable parts of the body and the benefits of understanding these tips are endless.

To learn more about eye wash requirements specific to your industry check out the link below:

http://www.gesafety.com/downloads/ANSIGuide.pdf