July 6, 2018
The E-Newsbrief of the National Clearinghouse is a free weekly newsletter focusing on new developments in the world of worker health and safety. Each issue provides summaries of the latest worker health and safety news from newspapers, magazines, journals, government reports, and the Web, along with links to the original documents. Also featured each week are updates from government agencies that handle hazmat and worker safety issues such as DOE, EPA, OSHA and others.
Subscribing to the National Clearinghouse Newsbrief is the best way to stay on top of the worker health and safety news.
- Top Stories
- Calendar Features
- On The Web This Week
- Federal Agency Update
- Awardee Highlights/Online Learning
- Job Openings
- We Want Your Feedback
- Newsbriefs Past Issues
|Top Stories||Back to Top|
WTP Minimum Health and Safety Training Criteria: Guidance for HAZWOPER and HAZWOPER-Supporting Training
In 1991, the original “Minimum Criteria for Worker Health and Safety Training for Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HAZWOPER)” (Minimum Criteria) was developed through a participatory national technical workshop in 1990 and issued by the NIEHS Worker Training Program (WTP). At various points since then, the Minimum Criteria document has been updated to reflect developments in training and the evolving priorities of the WTP. The most recent version incorporates feedback from participants at the WTP Fall 2017 National Technical Workshop. The guidance is primarily intended for organizations that provide hazardous waste worker and emergency response training under grants from NIEHS.
More Hanford Nuclear Waste Tanks at Risk of Leaking
More of Hanford's newest waste storage tanks could be at risk of developing leaks, according to a new evaluation. Tank farm contractor Washington River Protection Solutions compared the chemistry of the waste in the nuclear reservation's oldest double-shell tank, which was discovered to be leaking, to the waste in the nuclear reservation's other double-shell tanks. The evaluation's conclusion and other findings about the condition of the Hanford Site's double-shell tanks suggest a need to build more waste storage tanks for 56 million gallons of waste, according to the Washington Department of Ecology.
Tri-City Herald [Author: Annette Cary]
Ebola Outbreak 'Contained' as Lessons of 2014, Trial Vaccines Avert Global Panic
The Ebola outbreak in Congo has “largely been contained,” the World Health Organization says, leaving scientists optimistic that a mix of conventional disease-fighting tactics and trial vaccines was able to avert another global panic. The last confirmed infection was diagnosed nearly a month ago, and Doctors Without Borders is preparing to withdraw aid workers from the region because of the progress. Health officials said about 50 infections were detected and 29 deaths were attributed to the outbreak.
Washington Times [Author: Tom Howell Jr.]
Millions of Dollars Saved by NIEHS-Funded Technologies
More than $100 million was saved through the adoption of tools supported by the Superfund Research Program (SRP), according to a commentary published June 15 in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives. The tools also led to additional benefits to society, including hazardous substance remediation and site monitoring. The authors of the new commentary focused on methods that reduce the amount and toxicity of hazardous substances. They found both economic and societal benefits.
Environmental Factor [Author: Sara Amolegbe]
Environmental Health Perspectives [Authors: William A. Suk et al.]
|Calendar Features||Back to Top|
SBIR E-Learning for HAZMAT and Emergency Response
This Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) encourages Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant applications from small business concerns (SBCs) that propose to further the development of Advanced Technology Training (ATT) products for: the health and safety training of hazardous materials (HAZMAT) workers; waste treatment personnel; skilled support personnel associated with an emergency/disaster; emergency responders in biosafety response, infectious disease training and cleanup; emergency responders in disasters and resiliency training; and ATT tools to assist in research into the acute and long-term health effects of environmental disasters. Applications are due on July 31, 2018, by 5:00 pm ET.
Save the Date: Safe + Sound Week
The second annual Safe + Sound Week will be held August 13-19, 2018. The event is a nationwide effort to raise awareness of the value of workplace safety and health programs. These programs can help employers and workers identify and manage workplace hazards before they cause injury or illness, improving a company’s financial bottom line. Throughout this week, organizations are encouraged to host events and activities that showcase the core elements of an effective safety and health program, including: management leadership, worker participation, and finding and fixing workplace hazards. For more information and to sign-up for email updates, visit the Safe + Sound Week webpage.
Registration for 2018 National Cleanup Workshop Now Open
Join senior executives and site officials, industry leaders, national and local elected officials, and other stakeholders for the fourth annual National Cleanup Workshop (NCW2018) to discuss the Department of Energy's (DOE) progress on the cleanup of the environmental legacy of the nation's Manhattan Project and Cold War nuclear weapons program. NCW2018 is hosted by the Energy Communities Alliance (ECA) with the cooperation of the Energy Facility Contractors Group (EFCOG) and the DOE Office of Environmental Management (EM). The workshop will take place September 11 – 13, 2018, in Alexandria, VA.
Registration Now Open for NOIRS 2018
The National Occupational Injury Research Symposium (NOIRS) is the only national forum focused on the advancement of safe work environments for all workers. Currently, the symposium organizers are soliciting scientific and practice-based contributions from a variety of disciplines, including epidemiology, health economics, health communication, program evaluation, dissemination and implementation science, biostatistics, industrial/occupational psychology, safety engineering, industrial and systems engineering, physiology, mechanical and electrical engineering, health promotion, and management and health policy. This year, the event will be held in Morgantown, West Virginia, at the Morgantown Marriott at Waterfront Place on October 16–18, 2018.
|On The Web This Week||Back to Top|
WHO Report: Preventing Disease Through a Healthier and Safer Workplace
A new report from the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that in 2015, more than 1.2 million deaths globally were attributable to occupational risks, which represent 2.1% of all deaths in the general population. When accounting for both deaths and disability, the fraction of the global disease burden in the general population due to occupation amounts to 2.7%. Noncommunicable diseases contribute 70%, injuries 22% and infectious diseases 8% to the total disease burden from occupational risks. Low- and middle-income countries are disproportionally affected by occupational death and disease.
OSHA Focusing on Worker Safety in Outdoor and Indoor Heat Environments
With the official start of summer, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is urging employers across the country to protect workers from heat-related illnesses and hazards. According to OSHA, important ways to reduce heat exposure and the risk of heat-related illness include engineering controls, such as air conditioning and ventilation, that make the work environment cooler, and work practices such as work/rest cycles, drinking water often, and providing an opportunity for workers to build up a level of tolerance to working in the heat.
Sun News [Author: Colin Fluxman]
For First Responders, Climate Change Could Add Even More Stress
When storms, floods, and fires strike, emergency responders work around the clock to save families and their homes. Greg Friese, a paramedic, says disasters can take an emotional toll on first responders, too. They generally live in the communities they serve and can be dealing with losses of their own. Climate change is making extreme weather more common. So, to support emergency responders, Friese says cities should prioritize disaster preparedness and make sure that local departments are well-funded and well-equipped.
|Federal Agency Update||Back to Top|
MMWR: Evaluation of Occupational Exposure Limits for Heat Stress in Outdoor Workers — United States, 2011–2016
This Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) looks at recommended heat stress occupational exposure limits based primarily on wet bulb globe temperature (WBGT), workload, and acclimatization status. The authors conclude that whenever heat stress exceeds occupational exposure limits, workers should be protected by acclimatization programs, training about symptom recognition and first aid, and provision of rest breaks, shade, and water.
MMWR [Authors: Aaron Tustin et al.]
EPA Launches National Electronic Hazardous Waste Tracking System
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will launch the Hazardous Waste Electronic Manifest System (e-Manifest). The system will improve access to higher quality and more timely hazardous waste shipment data and save industry and states valuable time and resources to the tune of $90 million annually. Starting June 30, 2018, users must submit all manifests, whether paper or electronic, to EPA’s e-Manifest system.
SAMHSA Report on First Responders: Behavioral Health Concerns, Emergency Response, and Trauma
This Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) report focuses on mental health and substance use (behavioral health) concerns in first responders. It is estimated that 30 percent of first responders develop behavioral health conditions including, but not limited to, depression and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), as compared with 20 percent in the general population. This report provides background on first responders' behavioral health issues, information on risk and protective factors for behavioral health in first responders, and interventions to reduce behavioral health risks for first responders.
|Awardee Highlights/Online Learning||Back to Top|
Healthcare Challenges After Radiological Incidents
Many resources are available for healthcare, public health, and emergency management professionals planning for a potential large-scale radiological release or nuclear detonation incident, but planning is difficult and few jurisdictions have detailed plans. The Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) Technical Resources, Assistance Center, and Information Exchange (TRACIE) is hosting a webinar with panelists to discuss the impact and potential solutions of different event types and provide guidance and lessons learned related to casualties of radiological and nuclear emergencies. The webinar will take place July 11, 2018 from 2:00-3:15 p.m. ET.
|Job Openings||Back to Top|
WJCNY Seeks Executive Director
The Worker Justice Center of New York (WJCNY) seeks a visionary, passionate, and principled Executive Director committed to advancing the rights of farmworkers and other low-wage workers in New York State. WJCNY’s new Executive Director will have the opportunity to guide the organization’s strategic development in the context of significant recent growth.
Featured Safety Jobs with the American Society of Safety Engineers
Featured Safety Jobs with the American Industrial Hygiene Association
|We Want Your Feedback||Back to Top|