Sunday, December 21, 2014
OSHA Short Takes

Safety management group unveils new credential

The International Board for Certification of Safety Managers (IBFCSM) said Monday it has devised a new Certified Emergency and Disaster Professional credential, which includes the study of OSHA standards and practices. IBFCSM, a not-for-profit organization founded . . .

Reg advocate pushes jail time for corporate safety misconduct

A veteran regulatory advocate in Washington is pressing laws mandating jail time for corporate officers found to be responsible for major safety and health violations that have catastrophic results. Rena Steinzor, president of the Center . . .

OSHA, NIOSH work with oil and gas industry

OSHA and NIOSH have signed a formal alliance with safety professionals in the oil and gas industry to improve safety performance in that sector, which according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported 112 industry . . .

Agency focuses on small employer compliance help

OSHA is emphasizing services it can offer small businesses through compliance assistance programs -- which are designed to provide help with meeting OSHA requirements without the perceived threat of enforcement action -- and says OSHA's . . .

OSHA Short Takes
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OSHA Alleges Whistleblower Retaliation By New England Commuter Railroad

OSHA has lodged a whistleblower claim against a New England commuter railroad, legal action that comes as the agency attempts to increase enforcement under several federal statutes and elevate its levels of enforcement under whistleblower laws not only as part of the OSH Act but other laws including the Federal Railroad Safety Act (FRSA).

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OSHA Funding Levels To Remain Steady For Rest Of Fiscal Year, But Less Than Obama Sought

Federal spending on OSHA activities will remain even for the rest of fiscal 2015 at almost $553 million -- though that is less than President Obama sought in his proposed budget earlier this year -- as Congress in recent days passed a massive and heatedly negotiated funding package to keep most federal agencies running.

Senate Democrats Urge Feds To Accelerate New Rules For Chemical Plant Security

Senate Democrats are urging environmental regulators to accelerate plans for potentially stricter rules to improve security at industrial facilities such as chemical plants in order to meet President Obama's executive order seeking more-stringent rules, though GOP senators counter that the Environmental Protection Agency is moving too quickly without fully weighing industry input.

Rider Allowing PSM Inspections At Small Sites Fails To Make Cut In Spending Bill

Democratic-backed language that would allow OSHA to inspect small work sites -- those defined as 10 or fewer employees -- for purposes of identifying process safety management (PSM) hazards did not make it into Congress' final budget deal for fiscal 2015, with a Capitol Hill source telling Inside OSHA Online that House lawmakers blocked the provision when drafting the spending bill.

OSHA Official: Silica, Confined Spaces, Recordkeeping, Working Surfaces Are Key Reg Priorities

A top OSHA official says the agency's regulatory initiatives to reduce exposures to crystalline silica, tackle hazards from confined spaces in construction, put in place an online injury recordkeeping system, and help prevent slips, trips and falls on working surfaces are among the major rules that OSHA is most intent on trying to finish in the waning years of the Obama administration.

HHS Shields Developers Of Experimental Ebola Vaccines From Medical Liability

Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell on Tuesday invoked a rarely used power to offer liability protection for the manufacturing, testing, development, distribution and administration of three experimental Ebola vaccines.

Comparing Fed Worker Injury, Illness Data To Private Sector Will Help In Broad Analyses, OSHA Says

An upcoming Labor Department system for collecting data on injury and illness data among federal workers will help safety and heath professionals who are crunching the data compare the numbers with private sector figures, allowing them to glean informed conclusions about differences that may exist, OSHA's top official suggested recently.

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Labor Department Regulatory Agenda

Access the Labor Department agency rule list with OSHA items in the new semiannual regulatory agenda released Friday (November 21).

Electronic Recordkeeping
Chemical Safety

OSHA Documents

Congress Keeps FY '15 Funding Levels Stable For OSHA

Lawmakers have passed a sweeping omnibus appropriations bill that keeps OSHA funding levels steady at nearly $553 million for the rest of fiscal 2015.

GOP Senators Call For Uniform OSHA, EPA Action On Chemical Safety

Republican Sens. David Vitter and James Inhofe penned a joint letter to the Environmental Protection Agency urging EPA to work directly with OSHA to coordinate the agencies' efforts in tackling chemical plant safety in order . . .

Michaels Focuses On OSHA Chemical Safety Actions In Senate Hearing

OSHA chief David Michaels, in testimony Thursday (Dec. 11) before a joint hearing of the Senate labor and environment committees to oversee agencies' roll-out of President Obama's executive order addressing chemical plant safety (see related coverage), . . .

Boxer Lodges Concern Over 'Little Progress' On Chemical Safety

Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA), outgoing chair of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, issued a statement Thursday (Dec. 11) as the panel convened a hearing on chemical plant safety saying she is "very concerned that . . .

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