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Lockout/Tagout Procedures – Why are They so Important?

9 Jul

The simple answer to the above title is that lockout/tagout procedures prevent injuries and save lives.  When any machinery or electrical equipment accidentally or unexpectedly starts, it can cause injury. 

Today in America, an estimated 21 workers will be severely injured on the job due to the release of hazardous energy.  These energies include mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, chemical, thermal, gravity or other energies utilized by machines in manufacturing.

Injuries due to hazardous energy tend to be more severe than others.  These 21 workers will suffer from lacerations, OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAfractures, and amputations.  What’s even worse is that an additional 15 workers will die because someone failed to follow proper lockout/tagout procedures.  Even worse than that – all of these accidents were preventable.

Everyday, you are surrounded by machines that utilize tremendous amounts of energy to stamp, press, mold, cut, drill, heat and process raw materials into the goods you manufacture.

As a machine operator, you know that machines require a certain level of upkeep to keep operations running smooth.  You also know that equipment can sometimes break down.  Simply put, machines need to be maintained and repaired.

Often repairs can’t be done without personnel working beyond the machine guards and other safeguards in place to protect you from injury.  This means that maintenance personnel must place themselves in the direct path of the hazardous energy used to manufacture products.  Turning a machine off is not enough to protect against the release of hazardous energy, however.

Another employee could come along and unknowingly turn a machine on while maintenance personnel are working on it. You may not be able to see anyone in the machine.  They may be behind it, or just out of sight. Because of this, the hazardous energy used to power the machine must be isolated.  That’s where lockout/tagout comes in.

What can be done to control hazardous energy?

Failure to control hazardous energy accounts for nearly 10 percent of the serious accidents in many industries.

Lockout/Tagout is a system of safety procedures used to prevent the equipment from being accidentally started while servicing is taking place. Lockout refers to locks used as a physical barrier to prevent switches from being activated or valves from being turned. Tagout refers to written warnings alerting you to the fact that work is being performed on a specific piece of equipment and therefore, you should not try to operate it.

The OSHA standard for The Control of Hazardous Energy (Lockout/Tagout) establishes the employer’s responsibility to protect workers from hazardous energy. Employers are also required to train each worker to ensure that they know, OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAunderstand, and are able to follow the applicable provisions of the hazardous energy control procedures:

  • Proper lockout/tagout practices and procedures safeguard workers from the release of hazardous energy, addressing and controlling hazardous energy during servicing and maintenance of machines and equipment. Employers are also required to train each worker to ensure that they know, understand, and are able to follow the applicable provisions of the hazardous energy control procedures. Workers must be trained in the purpose and function of the energy control program and have the knowledge and skills required for the safe application, usage and removal of the energy control devices.
  • All employees who work in the area where the energy control procedure(s) are utilized need to be instructed in the purpose and use of the energy control procedure(s) and about the prohibition against attempting to restart or reenergize machines or equipment that is locked or tagged out.
  • All employees who are authorized to lockout machines or equipment and perform the service and maintenance operations need to be trained in recognition of applicable hazardous energy sources in the workplace, the type and magnitude of energy found in the workplace, and the means and methods of isolating and/or controlling the energy.
  • Specific procedures and limitations relating to tagout systems where they are allowed.
  • Retraining of all employees to maintain proficiency or introduce new or changed control methods.

Summit can Help!

Make sure your employees are focused to insure knowledge transfer to each employee on the proper ways to lockout/tagout a machine, as failure to correctly lockout and tagout a machine before beginning work can have deadly consequences.

Comply with OSHA training requirements and motivate workers to recognize the potential hazards of stored energy and follow established safety procedures to reduce energy release accidents in your plant. Isolation of all common forms of energy found in industry is discussed in Summit’s Lockout/Tagout programs.

Lockout/Tagout: Compliance >> 

Lockout/Tagout: Affected Employees >> 

Lockout/Tagout: Authorized Employees >>

Lockout/Tagout: Employee Awareness >>

Lockout/Tagout: Energy Control >>

Stay in control of your lockout/tagout safety training with Summit!

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It Could Happen in the Blink of an Eye – Keep Your Eyes Safe No Matter Where You Are

2 Jul

Your eyes are your windows to exploring the life around you… so it’s best not take them for granted.  Each day, an estimated 2,000 workers suffer eye injuries on the job, which not only robs many of them of their sight, but also costs employers and insurance companies millions of dollars a year.

Health experts say that 90% of all eye injuries are preventable.  Prevention is the first and most important step in protecting your EyeProtection_CloseUpeyes from injuries, so be sure to protect your eyes with appropriate protective eye-wear, such as goggles, safety glasses, or face shields.  According to the Detroit Medical Center (DMC), the leading causes of eye injury are sports accidents, fireworks, yard and workshop debris, and household chemicals.  An eye examination may be helpful in determining what type of protective eyewear is needed.  If you do experience an eye injury, seek medical attention promptly.

Summit wants you to provide you with some safety tips so you can be safe to avoid injury that may damage your ability to see. 

In the house…When using household chemicals, read instructions and labels carefully, work in a well-ventilated area and make sure to point spray nozzles away from you. Many chemicals are extremely hazardous and can permanently destroy the surface of your eyes, resulting in blindness.

In the workshop…Think about the work you will be doing, such as welding, hammering nails or metal, working with power tools or chemicals, and wear protective eyewear to shield your eyes from flying fragments, fumes dust particles, sparks and splashing chemicals. Many objects can fly into your eyes unexpectedly and cause injury.  Know how to flush chemicals out, and know the location of the nearest shower or sink.

In the garden…Put on protective eyewear before you use a lawnmower, power trimmer or edger and be sure to check for rocks and stones because they can become dangerous projectiles as they shoot from these machines. Do not forget the risk to bystanders when using these machines.

In the workplace…Wear appropriate safety eyewear for your job, such as glasses, goggles, face-shields, or helmets. Many of the 2,000 employees who are injured each day didn’t think they needed eye protection or were wearing eyewear inappropriate for the job.

Around the car…Battery acid, sparks and debris from damaged or improperly jump-started auto batteries can severely damage your eyes. Keep protective goggles in the trunk of your car to use for those emergencies and everyday repairs.

Playing sports...Wear protective eyewear during sports such as hockey, racquetball, or paintball that involve the risk of a blow to the eye. Baseball is the most common sport to cause eye injuries. Fishhook injuries are another common cause of eye injuries.  Protective eye-wear can prevent sports-related eye injuries more than 90% of the time.

When outside… One of the greatest threats to your eyes is invisible. Studies show that exposure to bright sunlight may increase the risk of developing cataracts, age-related macular degeneration and growths on the eye, including cancer.  When spending time outdoors, sunglasses that have 97-100% UV protection should be worn. Styles that wrap around to the temples prevent the sun’s rays from entering from the side.

If you are in need of eye safety training for you and your workers, then look no further.  Summit has your Eye Safety training programs covered:

Eye Safety: No Second Chances (DVD/Online)>>

Your workers will develop a respect for eye protection and understand the life-long consequences from not using adequate eye protection. The program presents:

  • Anatomy of the eye
  • Hazard recognition
  • Five most common eye hazards
  • Dangers of UV and infrared light
  • First aid procedures
  • Selection, use and care of eye protection

Eye Safety: Focused on Protection (DVD) >>

Teach your workers that by being proactive, having proper selection and use of eye and face protection, and using safety eye-wear every time it’s needed, workers can preserve their eyesight for a lifetime. This course covers:

  • Workplace Hazards
  • Protective Eye-wear
  • Best Work Practices

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Keep Safety with You Off-the-Job – Be Aware of Summer Recreational Safety

28 Jun

It strikes when you least expect it – especially in the summer.  With all of the opportunities for summer recreational activities, it is important to understand the potential risks during off-the-job activities, keeping your summer full of good, healthy fun.

Exposure can Sneak-Up on You

As the weather gets warmer, so does the potential for danger; a simple, beautiful summer day can also be your worst enemy.  Summer activities involving high air temperatures, such as hot weather and direct sun, summer-related functions, or strenuous have a safe summerphysical activities have a high potential for causing off-the-job health and safety issues.

Here are just a few summer activities that can become dangerous and how to lower your risk for accidents and incidents:

GRILLING – In 2005-2009, according to the National Fire Protection Agency, U.S. fire departments responded to an average of 8,200 home fires involving grills, hibachis or barbecues per year, including an average of 3,400 structure fires and 4,800 outside fires. These 8,200 fires caused an annual average of 15 civilian deaths, 120 civilian injuries and $75 million in direct property damage.

Safety Tips for Grilling from the NFPA:

  • Propane and charcoal BBQ grills should only be used outdoors.
  • The grill should be placed well away from the home, deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
  • Keep children and pets at least three feet away from the grill area.
  • Keep your grill clean by removing grease or fat buildup from the grills and in trays below the grill.
  • Never leave your grill unattended.
  • Always make sure your gas grill lid is open before lighting it.

SPORTS – The Center for Disease Control reports that 318 people die each year from heat-related illnesses, some or all of which could be prevented by adequate hydration and heat protection.

Stay safe playing sports with these safety tips:

  •  Make sure you are properly hydrated before recreational play and after.
  • Lather up on sunscreen (and don’t forget to reapply!)
  • Learn the symptoms of and how to handle heat related illnesses.
  • If riding a bike or doing any other activity that may result with a head injury, wear a helmet
  • Wear protective, properly fitting equipment

BOATING – The 2011 statistics gathered in the Boating Accident Report Database report that nearly 70% of all fatal recreational boating accident victims died from drowning.  Of those victims, 84% were not wearing a personal flotation device.  In 2011, there were 4588 accidents, 758 deaths, 3081 injuries, and $52 million in damage reported from recreational boating accidents.

The Recreational Boating Industry offers these safety tips when you are boating:

  • Always wear your life jacket
  • Stay low in the boat and maintain three points of contact
  • Keep one person in the boat while loading supplies
  • Keep three points of contact if you reach outside the hull of the boat
  • Keep an even, balanced load
  • Do not attach the anchor line to the stern of the boat
  • Stay low in the boat when pulling up the anchor
  • Head the bow of the boat directly into the seas or up to a 45 degree angle in rough waters
  • Don’t exceed allowable weight, horsepower rating, or maximum number of people

FIREWORKS - Approximately 9300 people nationwide are seriously injured by fireworks every year, with 40% of all fireworks related injuries due to illegal fireworks that have been banned by the Consumer Product Safety Commission. Every year, fireworks are the reason for 400 Americans to lose sight in one or both eyes, for more than 20,000 fires every year, and for approximately 4 deaths.

The National Council on Fireworks Safety has some safety tips for you:

  • Use fireworks outdoors only.
  • Obey local laws. If fireworks are not legal where you live, do not use them.
  • Always have water handy. (A hose or bucket).
  • Only use fireworks as intended. Don’t try to alter them or combine them.
  • Never relight a “dud” firework. Wait 20 minutes and then soak it in a bucket of water.
  • Use common sense. Spectators should keep a safe distance from the shooter and the shooter should wear safety glasses.
  • Alcohol and fireworks do not mix. Have a “designated shooter.”
  • Only persons over the age of 12 should be allowed to handle sparklers of any type.
  • Do not ever use homemade fireworks or illegal explosives: They can kill you! Report illegal explosives to the fire or police department in your community.

Summit Can Help!

We have our very own “Off-the-Job Safety: Fun in the Sun” DVD* to ensure your summer activities are full of fun – and safety.  This course covers:

  • Water sport safety
  • Fireworks and associated hazards
  • Preventing overexertion
  • The sun and its effects
  • Warm-up and cool-down sessions for physical activities

*This DVD is also Summit’s Feature of the Month… meaning it’s only $300, $95 off of list price!

Have fun with your off-the-job projects! And remember to stay safe!

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EH&S Training – The Benefits You Might Not Know About

21 Jun

What is that little extra ‘je ne sais quoi’ that makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside about safety training?  That is, besides the great feeling of having a competent understanding of how to stay safe while getting your job done.  Wait… you don’t experience the joy of having safety training that makes you ‘warm and fuzzy’?

Well, please continue reading to find some EH&S Training benefits that will do exactly that.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

We all know that environmental, safety and health training is an essential tool in the way organizations – and people in general – function.  We also know that it provides the tools and knowledge it takes to save lives every day, allowing mothers, fathers, sisters, and brothers to go home to their families day after day.  But what may not be common knowledge is that safety training can be more than just training; it can help you and your company in other ways, too.

Observe – Here are 3 impertinent factors of EH&S training that may cause you to feel much better about how you and your workers train for safety on the job:

1 – Saves time

Time is money, right?  EH&S training allows you and your workers to save time by helping you understand how to work safely, minimizing accidents for a more efficient workflow, allowing projects and schedules to stay on track.  In addition, the type of training can save you time as well.  For example, online training is a great for companies with multiple locations.  It allows employees to access the training from any computer with a web browser at any time, lowering travel costs and time away from work.

2 – Saves money ($)

Yup, you read that correctly.  EH&S training can help you save money. Fist of all, without safety training, your company could face some serious consequences.  Safety training, measures and policies can reduce minor accidents on the job site, downtime resulting from injuries, absent employees due to injuries, filed insurance claims, and loss of money resulting from investigations into claimed injuries.   Secondly, not all EH&S training is created equal.  You need to find the type of training that fits your needs – for example, look at classroom training versus individual training versus onsite training to find what works best for your company so you don’t have to keep purchasing training.

3 – Increases production

How? It’s all in the content.  EH&S training that utilizes technical accuracy and engaging content has proven to increase the effectiveness and retention of material among workers.  And that leads to more workers knowing how to perform their job not only safely and efficiently, but within regulation with safety powers, such as the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA).  Being safe and knowing how to perform your job safely is key to a more confident and productive workforce, increasing your bottom line as well.

Got training?

After reading this, are you in need of that ‘warm and fuzzy’ EH&S training for YOUR company?  Well, you’re in luck, because the writer of this blog works at a company that will provide you with said training.  And I would love to tell you about it.

Please direct your attention to our website, www.safetyontheweb.com, to find the training that fits your needs.

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Get a Lift in Your Safety Training – Know the Safety Precautions for Forklift Training

6 Jun

OSHA estimates there are about 85 forklift fatalities per year, 34,900 serious injuries and 61,800 non-serious injuries.  Additionally, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, each year nearly 100 workers are killed in forklift accidents and another 20,000 workers are seriously injured.  

These are some serious statistics.  Forklifts are a common sight in most factories and warehouses, used to carry, push, pull, lift and stack loads efficiently and with less strain on workers, but, unfortunately, many workers underestimate how dangerous forklifts can be.

The most common causes of forklift-related fatalities are: OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

  1. Forklifts overturning (22 percent)
  2. Forklifts striking a pedestrian (20 percent)
  3. Drivers or other employees being crushed by a forklift (16 percent)
  4. Drivers falling from their forklift (9 percent).

Keep Employee Safe

To prevent accidents like these, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, or OSHA, mandates that every forklift operator must be properly trained and certified before using the equipment, with requirements incorporating safe operation, training program implementation, training program content, refresher training and evaluation, avoidance of duplicate training and certification..   The forklift operator training requirement applies to several industries including general industry (1910), shipyards (1915), marine terminals (1917), long-shoring (1918) and construction (1926).

If your workplace uses a forklift, here are ten tips for implementing forklift safety to your workers:

1.       Determine the Type of Training Required – Be sure to pick the type of forklift training that fits your specific need, such as online, video, or onsite.

2.        Training that is Understandable – Provide training programs with a clear and concise message for how to properly use and stay safe on the presented material.  If need be, utilize or create custom training material that reflects the specific environment employees will work in.  Providing training in multiple languages is also a good idea. Content is key!

3.       Include All Potential Operators in the Training – Always include all potential operators in your safety training.  If you operate a forklift in our facility, you must be trained…100% of the time!

4.        Cover the Required Material – OSHA mandates that every forklift operator must be properly trained and certified before OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAusing the equipment.  Make sure the training you administer to your workers provides all of this information.  Also, make sure to cover anything unique about forklift operation at your facility; the OSHA standard is a minimum and may not suffice in your specific facility.

5.       Refresh the Training – OSHA says training for forklifts should be updated every three years; this must be done to keep workers up-to-date and refreshed on forklift safety training.

The main point here is that safety impacts employees’ lives and the financial bottom line. Forklift accidents are predictable and avoidable and with the proper training, employers can prevent many accidents and deaths.

Summit Can Help

Summit has several programs that cover the skills your workers need to stay safe while working with or around forklifts.  Workers who have been trained with Summit’s forklift programs demonstrate greater knowledge of how to safely operate their forklifts and superior driving skill. Reduce the risk for accidents today with Summit.

Click here for titles! >>

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Focus on Construction Safety – With Focus Four Training

29 May

Construction is the second largest employer in the U.S. alone – and is one of the most dangerous occupations in the country, incurring more occupational fatalities than any other sector in the United States.  Of the total inspections conducted by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), 60% are comprised of construction inspections, making it no wonder that construction safety is at the top of OSHA’s list of concerns.

Needing to employ hundreds of thousands of workers in assorted trades, construction activities presents several hazards that can OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAcompromise the health and safety of the workers, making it imperative to understand and train on the top safety issues to keep workers safe on the job at all times.

Four Life-Saving Lessons

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has recognized four construction hazards that are responsible for the majority of financial, physical, and emotional losses in construction industry.

OSHA’s Focus Four Hazards are:

  1. Fall Hazards
  2. Caught-In-Between Hazards
  3. Struck-By Hazards
  4. Electrical Hazards

OSHA found that 85% of all citations, 90% of dollars applied as fines, and 79% of all fatalities are related to these four construction hazards.

The Construction Focus Four Module (or Focus Four Hazards) was developed in support of the already existing [OSHA] Construction Outreach Program’s effort to help workers in the construction industry understand the hazards they face and know what their employer’s responsibilities are regarding protecting workers from workplace hazards.  The Construction Focus Four Module is required to be included in both the 10 hour and 30 hour OSHA Construction Outreach Training Program classes, and with each focus four hazard, there is an objective for what each student should be able to do at the end of training.

Hazard 1: Fall Hazards

Fall hazards that occur on a jobsite are a severe, chronic problem in the construction industry and are present at most worksites on a daily basis.  A fall hazard is anything at a worksite that could cause a worker to lose their balance or lose bodily support and result in a fall; any walking or working surface can be a potential fall hazard.

According to OSHA, falls from heights are the leading cause of fatalities in construction, while falls on the same level are one of the leading causes of injuries.  In 2010, falls accounted for 35 percent of all construction fatalities, or about 260 deaths, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. 

Hazard 2: Caught-In or -Between Hazards

According to OSHA, caught-in or -between hazards are defined as injuries that result from a person being squeezed, caught, crushed, pinched, or compressed between two or more objects, or between parts of an object.  Some working conditions that especially contribute to caught-in or –between hazards include:

  • Unguarded moving machinery
  • Equipment that is not locked-out during maintenance
  • Unprotected excavations and trenches
  • Heavy equipment that causes walls to collapse during demolition
  • Working between moving materials and immovable structures, vehicles, or equipmentOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Hazard 3: Struck-By Hazards

Struck-by injuries are produced by forcible contact or impact between the injured person and an object or piece of equipment, not to be confused with caught-in or –between hazards.   The difference is that for struck-by accidents, the impact alone caused the injury, versus a caught accident where injury resulted from crushing injuries between objects.  To get a better idea, struck-by hazards are categorized as a flying object, falling object, swinging object, or rolling object – such as:

  • Crane collapses
  • Falling equipment loads
  • Faulty overhead power lines
  • Non-visible workers
  • A blast of compressed air

Hazard 4: Electrocution Hazards

In the United States, electrocutions are the fourth leading cause of death among construction workers.  According to OSHA, electrocution results when a person is exposed to a lethal amount of electrical energy.  The top three types of electrocution hazards in construction are contact with overhead power lines, contact with energized sources, and improper use of extension and flexible cords.  An electrical hazard can be defined as a workplace occurrence that exposes workers to the following dangers, as outlined by the acronym BE SAFE:

  • Burns – The most common shock-related injury.  Can be one of 3 types: electrical, arc/flash, or thermal contact
  • Electrocution – This results when a human is exposed to a lethal amount of electrical energy
  • Shock – Results when the body becomes part of the electrical circuit by entering the body at one point and leaving at another
  •  Arc Flash/Arc Blast – This is the sudden release of electrical energy through the air when a high-voltage gap exists and there is a breakdown between conductors, giving off thermal radiation (heat) and intense light that can cause burns.  Temperatures have been recorded to reach 35,000 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Fire – Result from problems with ‘fixed wiring’, such as faulty electrical outlets and old wiring. Fire can also be caused by cord problems, plugs, receptacles, and switches.
  • Explosions – Can occur when electricity ignites an explosive mixture of material in the air

Be Prepared

Utilizing the Focus Four Hazard training at a construction site is a must to ensure that the proper safety precautions are being taken for worker safety.  The problem is not that the hazards and risks are unknown, it is that they are very difficult to control in a constantly changing work environment – especially in construction.

By understanding and training on the top four hazards, your workers will be able to understand the hazards they face and know what OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAtheir employer’s responsibilities are regarding protecting workers from workplace hazards, keeping them prepared for a safer work environment.

Stay Safe with Summit

Summit has the safety training you need to stay in compliance and protect your workers against the hazards of OSHA’s Focus Four.  Visit the site below for more information.

http://summit.hsi.com/focusfour

References:

“Construction Quick Facts.” Associated Builders and Contractors, n.d. Web. 27 Jan. 2013.

“Construction Industry – Construction Focus Four Training.” OSHA Outreach Training Program. United States Department of Labor, n.d. Web. 27 Jan. 2013.

“Construction Focus 4: OSHA Student Handbook.” MANCOMM, n.d. Web. 01 Feb. 2013.

“Construction Safety and Health.” Workplace Safety & Health Topics. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 8 Feb. 2011. Web. 01 Feb. 2013.

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May is Stroke Awareness Month – Know the Risks

16 May

Did you know… that every 40 seconds, someone in the United States has a stroke?  According to the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2008 alone, more than 133,000 Americans died from stroke—or one person every four minutes— making it the fourth leading cause of death in the United States.

It’s scary to think about.  A stroke, sometimes called a brain attack, occurs when a blockage stops the flow of blood to the brain or OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAwhen a blood vessel in or around the brain bursts.  Although many people think of stroke as a condition that affects only older adults, strokes can and do occur in people of all ages.  In fact, nearly a quarter of all strokes occur in people younger than age 65.

Each year, almost 800,000 strokes occur in the United States and can often lead to serious, life-changing complications that include paralysis or weakness on one side of the body, problems with brain function and forming speech and/or emotions, numbness, pain, and depression.

With May being Stroke Awareness Month, we want to increase Stroke Awareness to ensure that you know how to recognize signs of a stroke and also how to prevent one from occurring.

What are the Signs of a Stroke? 

According to the National Stroke Association and the American Heart Association, stroke warning signs and symptoms are F.A.S.T.: (here’s where I got the info: http://strokeassociation.org/STROKEORG/WarningSigns/Stroke-Warning-Signs-and-Symptoms_UCM_308528_SubHomePage.jsp, for design you could use this too)

  • Face Drooping – Does one side of the face droop or is it numb? Ask the person to smile. Is the person’s smile uneven?
  • Arm Weakness – Is one arm weak or numb? Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?
  • Speech Difficulty – Is speech slurred? Is the person unable to speak or hard to understand? Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence, like “The sky is blue.” Is the sentence repeated correctly?
  • Time to call 9-1-1 – If someone shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 9-1-1 and get the person to OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAthe hospital immediately. Check the time so you’ll know when the first symptoms appeared.

Other symptoms include:

  • SUDDEN numbness or weakness of face, arm or leg – especially on one side of the body.
  • SUDDEN confusion, trouble speaking or understanding.
  • SUDDEN trouble seeing in one or both eyes.
  • SUDDEN trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination.
  • SUDDEN severe headache with no known cause.

Lower Your Risk

Demographic factors such as family history, age, sex, and race/ethnicity can all play a role in an individual’s stroke risk. Regardless of your background, however, there are several things you can do to lower your chances of having a stroke.  To prevent cardiovascular disease, including stroke, and contribute to overall health, here are some pointers:

  • Appropriate Aspirin therapy – Ask your doctor if taking aspirin is right for you.
  • Blood pressure control – More than half of the world’s stroke deaths are caused by elevated blood pressure levels.
  • Cholesterol management – Get your cholesterol checked regularly and manage it with diet and physical activity or with medication, if needed.
  • Don’t smoke.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Eat a healthy diet that’s low in sodium.
  • Maintain a healthy weight.
  • Prevent or control diabetes.
  • Limit your alcohol intake – Keep it to fewer than two drinks per day for men, or one drink per day for women.

Remember: When responding to a stroke, every second counts.

Learn more at the National Stroke Association >>

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Child & Babysitting Safety (CABS) Training, Just in Time for Summer

7 May

Posted by Kristine Rice on Wed, May 01, 2013 

The end of the school year is fast approaching, and soon it will be summer job season for our teens. Babysitting is a favorite choice for high school and college-aged young adults looking to earn extra cash during the summer months. But are they prepared to handle the emergencies that can occur?

The National Safety Council turned to the doctors at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, OH to determine the five most common injuries that affect children in the summer, often ending in a trip to the hospital:

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    • Falls
    • Bicycle injuries
    • Burns
    • Motorized vehicle incidents
    • Drowning

The Child & Babysitting Safety (CABS) program covers topics such as:

    • Babysitting as a Business
    • Safety and Injury Prevention
    • Leadership
    • Play Time
    • Basic Caregiving Skills
    • First Aid

Babysitting is serious business and a big responsibility; your child is taking care of someone else’s child. Make sure they are prepared and knowledgeable in babysitting best practices as well as how to operate their first attempt at running a small business.

Read the full blog HERE >> 

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~Get Social with Summit Training Source, now a part of the Health and Safety Institute~

Twitter: Sara Wesche @SafetyTraining1

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SummitTrainingSource

What Happens With Temporary Workers Under OSHA?

23 Apr

The summer hiring season is just around the corner.  And before you begin the search for temporary workers process, there are a few important things you need to know.

Temporary and migrant workers face greater dangers and are injured more often in the workplace than regular and permanent workers. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA These types of workers face multiple systemic problems which make them more vulnerable to workplace accidents and that also leave them less likely to report unsafe conditions and accidents to authorities and less likely to seek medical help for their injuries (source).

With workplaces that hire temporary workers, there is the familiar question: Who is responsible when accidents occur? This question especially exists under OSHA.  When temporary or leased employees are involved, it is important to understand who is responsible for compliance. Is it the agency supplying the employees or the client employer for whom they are working? Through interpretive letters and compliance directives to staff, OHSA asserts that it can be a shared responsibility. Read the full article here >>

OSHA requires that employers protect the health and safety of all workers under their supervision and control.  Employers must train all employees, including temporary workers, on the hazards specific to that workplace – before they start working. OSHA’s role is to ensure these conditions for America’s working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance.

However, even after workplace accidents that result in death and permanent disability, OSHA is at somewhat of a disadvantage. Companies have a legal right to challenge their citations and the amount of their fines.

“We don’t have criminal prosecution powers,” OSHA administrator David Michaels told NPR. “We do everything we can within the current regulatory framework. We issue large fines. We go after companies we think are scofflaws. We do repeat visits to the worst companies.”

For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov.

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~Get Social with Summit Training Source, now a part of the Health and Safety Institute~

Twitter: Sara Wesche @SafetyTraining1

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SummitTrainingSource

How Much do You Know About Silica?

19 Apr

Silica knowledge is a must on a construction site, since occupational exposure to crystalline silica often occurs as part of common construction operations involving cutting, sawing, drilling, and crushing of concrete, brick, block, rock, and stone products.  The hazards of excessive exposure to crystalline silica have been known since ancient times, going back to the construction of the pyramids.  However, despite more than 2,000 years of knowledge that silica is a hazard, data from the National Occupational Respiratory Mortality System indicates that between 1990 and 1999 there were still 118 reported silica-related deaths in the OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAconstruction industry.

The American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) explains that a key component in preventing overexposure to silica and subsequent disease is to have a competent person for on a construction site who is capable of recognizing and evaluating situations where overexposure may be occurring, who knows how to evaluate the exposure potential, and who can make an initial recommendation on how to control that exposure.

The AIHA has released a white paper that provides the recommended skills and capabilities for “silica-competent persons.”

According to the white paper, silica-qualified person:

  • Has a recognized degree, certificate, or professional standing in an occupational health, safety, environmental, or engineering field (e.g., CIH, CSP, PE);
  • Has extensive knowledge, training, and experience in hazards and control of silica hazards on the construction site through formal training and/or extensive, firsthand experience in anticipation, recognition, evaluation, and control of worker silica exposure; and
  • Can make quantitative assessments of worker exposure and recommend detailed control measures.

Read the full article HERE >>

Summit Can HelpSilica_ConcreteCutting

Summit’s Silica Safety Awareness program will teach your workers about the hazards of crystalline silica in order to avoid unnecessary illness and death.

Silica Safety Awareness >> 

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~Get Social with Summit Training Source, now a part of the Health and Safety Institute~

Twitter: Sara Wesche @SafetyTraining1

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SummitTrainingSource

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