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Personal Protection - Storage, Maintenance and Care (Sep/Oct-12)
Machine Safeguarding (Jul/Aug-12)
Is Your Lockout & Tagout Program Working? (May/Jun-12)
Getting Familiar with OSHA (Mar/Apr-12)
Is Your Piping Systems Properly Marked? (Jan/Feb-12)
Accident Prevention, Does Your Company Have An Effective Program? (Nov/Dec-11)
Defining FR – Flame Resistant Fabrics (Jul/Aug-11)
OSHA's Flammable & Combustible Liquids (May/Jun-11)
Safety & Health Program Check-up (Jan/Feb-11)
OSHA Is My Friend (Nov/Dec-10)
OSHA Standard for Control of Hazardous Energy Sources? (Sep/Oct-10)
Lockout/Tagout Program (Jul/Aug-10)
Safe Handling of Compressed Gas Cylinders (May/Jun-10)
What You Should Know about OSHA and Plastic Working Machinery (Mar/Apr-10)
Fasten Those Forklift Seat Belts (Jan/Feb-10)
My Back Hurts (Nov/Dec-09)
Fall Protection Program (Sep/Oct-09)
Accident Prevention & Investigation (Jul/Aug-09)
OSHA & Machine Safeguarding (May/Jun-09)
Carbon Monoxide Hazards (Mar/Apr-09)
OSHA Electrical Safety and Training (Jan/Feb-09)
Free Forklift ANSI Standards (Nov/Dec-08)
Worksite Fire Emergencies (Sep/Oct-08)
Machine Safety (Jul/Aug-08)
Ladder Safety (May/Jun-08)
Is Your Company on OSHA's Hit List?
OSHA Notifies Workplaces with High Injury and Illness Rates (Mar/Apr-08)
Safety Means . . . Never Having to Say You're Sorry (Jan/Feb-08)
Flammables and Combustible Liquids (Nov/Dec-07)
Designing-In Safety NOT Retrofitting Safety (Sep/Oct-07)
Back Safety and Lifting (Jul/Aug-07)
Machine Guarding (May/Jun-07)
Your Hearing Keep it for a Lifetime (Mar/Apr-07)
Light Up the Holidays the Safe Way (Nov/Dec-06)
Would You Risk Your Employee's Life? (Sep/Oct-06)
How to Control Workers' Compensation Costs (Jul/Aug-06)
Compliance with 70E Electrical Standards (May/Jun-06)
OSHA Is on the Move (Mar/Apr-06)
Workplace Violence (Jan/Feb-06)
The Aging Workforce (Nov/Dec-05)
The Safety Paradox (Sep/Oct-05)
Machine Guarding (Jul/Aug-05)
Effective Risk Management (May/Jun-05)
Safety Is Everyone's Business (Mar/Apr-05)
New Year's Resolution Safety (Jan/Feb-05)
Safe Driving (Nov/Dec-04)
Terror In The Skies Revisited (Sep/Oct-04)
How They Got Hurt (Jul/Aug-04)
In-Plant Air Monitoring & Analysis (May/Jun-04)
Safety on the Job and Complying with the Americans With Disabilities Act (Mar/Apr-04)
Link to Article Archive (Jan/Feb-04)
A Supervisor's Duty (Nov/Dec-03)
Machine Safety – Are Your Machines Safe to Operate? (Sep/Oct-03)
Summer is Here (Jul/Aug-03)
Working Safely On Powered Industrial Trucks (Forklifts) (May/Jun-03)
Does Your Safety and Health Workplace Program Contain All of These Elements? (Mar/Apr-03)
Methylene Chloride (Jan/Feb-03)
Safety Signs & Labels - Does Your Facility Comply? (Nov/Dec-02)
Indoor Air Quality (Sep/Oct-02)
When OSHA Arrives (Jul/Aug-02)
Facts About the Occupation Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) (May/Jun-02)
Workplace Fire Safety (Mar/Apr-02)
OSHA 300 Form (Jan/Feb-02)
Preparing for Disaster (Nov/Dec-01)
How Much is a Life Worth? (Sep/Oct-01)
Material Handling Programs (Jul/Aug-01)
It's Up To You To Protect Your Skin (May/Jun-01)
When You’ve Been Handed the Responsibility for Safety (Mar/Apr-01)
A Fresh Look at Machine Safeguarding (Jan/Feb-01)
Safe Work Habits (Nov/Dec-00)
The Importance of Material Safety Data Sheets (Sep/Oct-00)
Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (Jul/Aug-00)
Lockout/Tagout Program (May/Jun-00)
OSHA Violations, Citations and Penalties for 1998 (Mar/Apr-00)
Erogonomics and Machinery Safeguarding (Jan/Feb-00)
General Machine Principles (Nov/Dec-99)
SAFETY SOLUTIONS
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SAFETY SOLUTIONS: OSHA Violations, Citations and Penalties for 1998

The OSHA Act requires employers to comply with OSHA standards and regulations and to protect employees from recognized hazards in the workplace. OSHA compliance officers regularly inspect workplaces to assure that employers are following these requirements.

Following are the statistics for the top 15 General Industry Violations for 1998, the latest year available (sources "Safety Currents & Best Safety Guide"):

StandardSectionSubjectTotal Violations
1910.1200(e)(1)Hazard Communication
Written Program
2,293
1926.501(b)(1)Fall Protection1,645
1926.451(g)(1)Scaffolding1,630
1910.212(a)(1)MachineGuarding-Types of Guarding1,458
1910.1200(f)(5)HazardCommunication-Labeling Containers1,299
1926.100(a)Head Protection1,252
1904.002(a)Log & Summary of Occupational Injuries & Illnesses1,177
(5)(a)(1)General Duty Clause1,117
1910.147(c)(4)Lockout/tagout-Written energy control Procedures1,110
1926.652(a)(1)Excavations1,003
1910.151(c)FirstAid-Eyewash / emergency Shower Facilities873
1910.215(b)(9)Abrasive wheel machinery-Exposure adjustment/safety guards800
1910.212(a)(3)MachineGuarding-Point-of-operation guarding783
1910.23(c)(1)Guarding floor openings, platforms and runways759
1910.147(c)(1)Lockout/tagout-Establishment of an energy control program42

Looking over these statistics, where would your establishment fall if an OSHA compliance inspector walked into your premises today?

OSHA recently released a fact sheet containing information on workers injuries, illnesses and fatalities in 1998.

5.9 million injuries/illnesses among private sector firms - about 200,000 fewer than in 1997 and the lowest on record.

The rate of injuries and illnesses for every 100 workers dropped from 7.1 in 1997 to 6.7 in 1998, continuing a six-year decline.

Since 1993, injury and illness rates have fallen 25 percent. Of the 5.9 million injury/illness cases: 5.5 million injuries; 392,000 illnesses - 65 percent of these were associated with repeated trauma.

Workers fatalities: 6,026 which was 212 fewer than in 1997 - a three percent decline in deaths.

Statistics are not just numbers, they reflect injuries; illnesses and fatalities that have torn a family apart and caused pain either physical, emotional or both to people.

Review your company's safety and health program periodically. Involve your employees. If they understand their daily behavior and thought processes, have a director correlation on not only their physical well-being, but that of their co-workers and family's, people will be motivated to comply with your company's written safety and health program.

Setting Safety Goals

Begin by assessing your particular situation, taking into consideration where, when and how most accidents occur. Ask foreman, supervisors and department heads how most safety problems arise. Consider hiring an ergononmics or chemical specialist to uncover hidden dangers. Monitor the work environment carefully for approximately one month, pinpointing hazards and formulating strategies. The following should always be considered when stating goals:

Keep goals simple - Stick to one or two specific goals that are easily understood by everyone involved. Remember you cannot resolve everything at once, and that it is better to be able to successfully resolve a few problems for a long period of time.

Be realistic - Participants have to be able to attain the set goals or they will become unmotivated.

Timing is everything - Objectives should correspond with peak injury periods.

Make goals measurable - Goals should relate to a specific activity or performance so you can track the results.

Make goals acceptable -Top management and supervisors must approve and participate. Both groups can help establish goals that are measurable and within company policy.

Designing the Program

Once you have established your objectives, you are ready to develop a plan of attack. Most safety programs require about six months to run at full capacity, taking into account education and training. More complex programs require more time, so be flexible.

Safety programs are often broken down into departments or areas to create a team environment. Remember TEAM (together everyone achieves more). To be successful, your safety program should be based on the following team format:

  • Be sure every team member is capable of attaining the goals.

  • Teams should consist of both supervisors and workers who perform similar tasks.

  • Keep groups to a maximum of eight.

  • Make sure participants are rewarded equally.

Dollars & Sense

You do not have to break the bank to run a successful safety program. Just remember that the money you initially invest is more than made up for in money saved on accidents. By making safety a Top Priority, everyone in your company benefits. More than just dollars saved with the implementation of a successful safety program, both productivity and morale will improve. That's why no matter how you slice it, a safe business is a better business. The DuPont Corporation has a safety slogan which states "You will reach the level of safety that you demonstrate you want to achieve". Safety statistics are showing improvement over the past few years. This is good news. Participate in some way everyday to make your workplace a safer place to be.

Neither The Plastics Distributor & Fabricator Magazine, nor KLW Enterprises Inc., is responsible for the contributed information or opinions contained in this magazine. All such information and opinions are those of the authors.

For more information, click on the Authors Biography at the top of this page.

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