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NIEHS WTP: March 10, 2023 Newsbrief

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Weekly E-Newsbrief, March 10, 2023

Weekly E-Newsbrief

March 10, 2023

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 StoriesBack to Top

2023 FOA - SBIR E-Learning for HAZMAT and Emergency Response (R43/R44 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)

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 Technology-enhanced training products for the health and safety training of hazardous materials (HAZMAT) workers. Technology-enhanced training products as defined by the Worker Training Program (WTP) include, but are not limited to, supporting training through various venues such as online training, mobile device training, virtual reality, and serious gaming. Applications are due July 14, 2023.

Current Funding Opportunities

California Fire Crews Help Clean up Snow and Conduct Rescues

Chief of the Placer County Fire Department, Brian Estes, provides updates on the rescue and cleanup efforts in California following multiple snowstorms that have left areas. Chief Estes describes the dynamic rescue efforts and unique challenges taking place during the extreme snowstorm event.

Yahoo News

Worker Safety Worries Brings OSHA Into East Palestine, OH

Officials with Occupational Safety and Health Administration visited some of the work sites as the remediation of those toxic chemicals continues. The union of Norfolk Southern state the company did not offer or provide 40 of its maintenance workers with appropriate personal protective equipment for safely working around spilled chemicals. First Responders are also monitoring their health after working right against the fire, or those who inhaled the burning chemicals in clouds of smoke while assisting further out.

WFMJ [Author: Janet Rogers]

Construction Starts on Nevada’s Thacker Pass Lithium Mine

Construction began on an open-pit mine at the largest lithium deposit in the United States, even as tribes and environmental groups continue a years-long effort to block the project. Lithium Americas Corp. announced that it began construction on the Thacker Pass lithium project in Humboldt County, Nevada, after the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals denied a request by mine opponents to block work.

High County News [Author: Gabriel Aoun Angueira]

How Dangerous is Turbulence on Airplanes? Here's What You Need to Know

The majority of passengers seriously injured by turbulence weren't wearing their seatbelts, often because they were using the restroom or walking up or down the aisle, according to a 2021 National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) report. The NTSB report found the same was true for crew members, who were commonly injured while preparing the cabin for landing or doing cabin service — like serving food or drinks or collecting trash.

NPR [Author: Kaitlyn Radde]

Calendar FeaturesBack to Top

Preventing Exposure to Workplace Chemicals

This workshop will discuss the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) Hazardous Communication standard, assessing chemical hazards, and understanding safety data sheets. The workshop is open to workers in healthcare and non-healthcare settings who are at risk of hazardous chemical exposure. The workshop will be held on March 13, 2023, 1:00 p.m. EST.

Event Registration

Violence and Aggression in Health Care

Violence and point-of-care safety threats have become commonplace in healthcare settings, with healthcare staff routinely facing the risk of violent physical, sexual, and verbal assault by patients, family members, and even colleagues. The Rutgers School of Public Health webinar will examine this complex issue and the upstream factors contributing to violence in healthcare settings. The event will be held on March 21, 2023, 2:00 p.m. EST.

Event Registration

Being an Ally – Improving Treatment of Women on The Job

The final session in The CPWR – Center for Construction Research and Training’s Women in Construction webinar series will cover the basics of how to foster a jobsite safety climate that is welcoming to women and other minorities in the industry. Panelists will review legal policies to ensure accountability, when and how to intervene, the benefits of anti-harassment and upstander training, and other ways to support women workers practically and directly. The event will be held on March 22, 2023, 2:00 p.m. EST.

Event Registration

On The Web This WeekBack to Top

A Fertilizer Plant Caught Fire. Winston-Salem Had no Plan to Alert Spanish-Speaking Residents

At least 6,000 residents had to evacuate their homes due to the risk of explosion after a fertilizer plant caught fire. The majority of that community, per the U.S. census, is low-income people of color: the residents living within a three-mile radius of the plant are 53.7% Black and 25.6% Hispanic — and Winston-Salem had no plan to alert Spanish-speaking residents.

Southernly [Author: Victoria Bouloubasis]

Paid Sick Leave Among U.S. Healthcare Personnel, April 2022

Healthcare personnel (HCP) are at risk for acquiring and transmitting respiratory infections in the workplace. Paid sick leave benefits allow workers to stay home and visit a healthcare provider when ill. Increasing HCP access to paid sick leave may decrease presenteeism and subsequent transmission of infectious diseases in healthcare settings.

American Journal of Preventive Medicine (subscription required)

Study Spotlights High Injury Risk Among Food Supply Chain Workers

Workers who play a role in the U.S. food supply chain are at high risk of being hospitalized with severe injuries, results of a recent study show. Researchers from Pennsylvania State University and the University of Florida used 2015-2020 data from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to investigate all severe injuries related to transport packaging and its use in various segments of the food and beverage-related industry.

Safety and Health Magazine

New Study Finds Central Appalachian Miners at Highest Risk of Dying From Lung Diseases

The study was conducted jointly by researchers at the University of Illinois Chicago and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, an agency within the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The study found Central Appalachian coal miners are over eight times more likely than men in the general population to die from respiratory diseases like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and black lung.

Virgina Mercury [Author: Sarah Vogelsong]

Federal Agency UpdateBack to Top

CSB Safety Alert: Emergency Pressure-Relief Systems

U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board (CSB) issued a safety alert for emergency pressure-relief systems. Emergency Pressure-Relief Systems protect equipment from unexpected and undesired high-pressure events. These events can seriously harm or cause fatal injuries to workers, damage critical equipment, and cause significant off-site impacts.

CSB News Release

Full Safety Alert

Secretary Walsh Joins Union, Community Leaders, Apprentices to Discuss Registered Apprenticeships, $20M Agreement to Expand Equitable Construction Training

Secretary Walsh announced a $20 million cooperative agreement between the Department of Labor (DOL) and the TradesFutures non-profit to advance equitable opportunities in construction through the department’s “Scaling Apprenticeship Readiness Across the Building Trades” initiative.

DOL News Release

Biden-Harris Administration Announces Availability of $16 Million for Pollution Prevention in Environmental Justice Communities

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the availability of $16 million for two new grant opportunities to support states and Tribes in providing technical assistance to businesses seeking to develop and adopt pollution prevention (P2) practices that advance environmental justice in underserved communities.

EPA News Release

Awardee Highlights/Online LearningBack to Top

Total Worker Health (TWH) for Occupational Safety and Health Professionals: A Continuing Education Course for Occupational Health Professionals

This program is intended for OSH professionals working in a variety of industrial settings. This course content is appropriate for industrial hygienists, environmental safety and health managers, safety specialists, occupational health nurses, and union health and safety steward. This is a self-paced online course that provides a foundational introduction to TWH concepts and how they apply to OSH professional practice.

University of Massachusetts Lowell

Exposed: Ingredients in Salon Products & Salon Worker Health and Safety

This report reviewed a snapshot of certain professional salon products currently available in California beauty supply stores to investigate how well manufacturers are complying with these new laws, to help identify important ingredient and disclosure trends, and to further emphasize what we now know about chemicals found in these professional products. In addition to the report, factsheets on ingredients in salon products and worker health and safety are available in English, Spanish, and Vietnamese.

Women’s Voices for the Earth

Job OpeningsBack to Top

UCLA Labor Occupational Safety and Health (LOSH) Program Seeks a Project Coordinator

The LOSH Project Coordinator oversees LOSH training initiatives designed to promote hazard awareness, injury and illness prevention, skills building, and leadership development among workers in Southern California. The Project Coordinator supports training and program development efforts under LOSH's Worker Occupational Safety and Health Training and Education Program for both English- and Spanish-speaking audiences. Application deadline is March 15, 2023, and the requisition number is 38395.

Job Posting

The Institute for Disaster and Emergency Preparedness at Nova Southeastern University Seeks a Director of Grant & Service Programs

The grant-funded Director will oversee teams on Project SEAMIST (SouthEast Area Marine Industry Safety Training) and the Southeast Area Hazardous Maritime Instructor Training grant. Responsibilities include, reviewing current operations, developing strategic plans, monitoring budgets and resource allocation to optimize program services, implementing marketing plans and maintaining client relations. This is a Full-time, Hybrid position with benefits. Job posting under 993438.

Job Posting

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