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The number of OSHA inspectors has decreased in recent months

Over the course of the last three months, the total number of workplace safety inspectors with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, or OSHA, has declined sharply. According to data obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request, OSHA has lost over 40 inspectors due to normal attrition in the last few months. However, the federal government has not moved to fill any of these vacancies since October 2, 2017. This decline has accounted for a 4 percent drop in the total number of OSHA inspectors.

Multiple hazards impact meat and poultry processing workers

All agricultural jobs in Georgia include safety dangers, but a report from the Government Accountability Office highlights the numerous problems that confront workers in meat and poultry processing plants. Knives and hand saws result in cuts and sometimes amputations. Exposure to peracetic acid that is sprayed on meat to kill germs causes respiratory illnesses.

Court tosses objections to OSHA rule

Workers in Georgia who are concerned about workplace safety may be interested in the recent ruling by the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit regarding the Occupational Exposure to Respirable Crystalline Silica rule from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. The court threw out industry challenges to the rule and asked the agency to explain why medical removal provisions were not included.

White House announces review of coal dust regulation

Georgia residents may be interested to learn that President Trump is considering relaxing regulations that were written to protect miners from coal dust and black lung disease. The Respirable Coal Mine Dust Rule, which was introduced during the Obama administration, requires mine operators to sample air quality more frequently so that miners have more accurate information about coal dust levels. A Dec. 14 statement from the White House indicates that the rule is being reviewed to find out if it can be made less burdensome.

Leading workplace safety violations in 2017

Workers in Georgia may be interested in knowing that OSHA has released a list of the top 10 most frequently occurring workplace safety violations for 2017. The most frequently cited workplace safety violations from October 1, 2016, to September 30, 2017, were related to the fall protection-general requirements. This has been the leading violation for the past six years.

Recycling facility to enforce OSHA's BBP standards

Workers in the solid waste collection and recycling industry are at risk for certain injuries, especially needlesticks caused by used hypodermic needles, lancets and other sharps. Such workers in Georgia may even think that their companies do little to enforce OSHA's standards regarding the detection of needles. However, a recent engagement action may indicate that OSHA is upholding its standards more than ever.

Gig economy and worker safety

Georgia residents may have an understanding of what is meant by "gig economy." However, there is no consensus as to what the term actually means. Instead, it is used as a general way to describe work that is paid by the job rather than by the hour or some other period of time. There may be a variety of jobs within the gig economy such as working for Uber or starting an online store.

Keeping workplace safety rules simple

Georgia employers are required to comply with both state and federal regulations to keep their employees safe. A comprehensive workplace safety strategy typically involves employee education. Simplifying safety rules may help employers ensure that basic safety requirements are followed consistently.

Workers at heightened risk of injury in first month on job

Landing a new job can be an exciting time for a Georgia worker, but those early days at the job site impose a greater chance of workplace injury on a new hire. A research study by the Institute for Work & Health found that people have triple the risk of injuries that cause them to miss work during their first month of employment compared to co-workers that have been there for more than one year.

Employers and workers must take seriously threat of arc flashes

Electric workers in Georgia face many hazards, and arc flashes and explosions from live electrical wires represent a deadly threat. Every year, about 2,000 people go to hospitals with arc flash injuries. The severe burns associated with most of these accidents kill about 20 percent of victims annually.

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