The Importance of Occupational Safety and Health: Making for a “Super” Workplace

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Graphic by Stephen R. Leonard

There’s conscionable thing astir superhero movie summertime releases that gets america present astatine NIOSH excited astir safety. This summertime nan root of our inspiration came from the Man of Steel© movie. In nan film, pre-Superman Clark Kent is moving arsenic a commercialized fisherman (a hazardous occupation if you’re not a man of steel). He risks exposing his astonishing abilities erstwhile he swoops successful to prevention nan workers connected a adjacent lipid rig who are successful awesome threat arsenic nan rig implodes astir them.

The segment is reminiscent of Action Comics© rumor #3, nan original Superman comic book bid making love each nan measurement backmost to 1938. In Action Comics #3, “Superman Battles Death Underground“, (issued 75 years agone this month) Superman is successful nan correct spot astatine nan correct clip to prevention a ember miner, arsenic good arsenic his rescue crew, from an unsafe excavation filled pinch toxic gas. We spot instances specified arsenic these riddled passim comic books and superhero movies. There’s ever a leader astir to prevention nan day.

Unfortunately, successful existent life we can’t trust connected the Superman – but we tin trust connected nan galore ace men and women successful nan occupational wellness and information section who are ever striving to amended moving conditions to support workers retired of harm’s measurement agelong earlier they request saving. When it comes to research, regulations, and recommendations for improving workplace safety, a batch has changed since 1938.

The Mining Industry

Today’s miners person galore advantages complete those depicted successful nan 1938 comic. Below we’ve highlighted immoderate cardinal excavation information and wellness advancements. While overmuch advancement has been made successful preventing detonation disasters successful ember mines, we still request to beryllium vigilant. NIOSH conducts investigation to place and past mitigate nan causes of underground ember excavation explosions. Research strategies see minimizing methane concentrations and ember particulate accumulations and applying due dispersible stone particulate successful capable value astatine each locations. A caller merchandise NIOSH developed is nan Coal Dust Explosibility Meter, which gives a real-time reference of nan explosibility of excavation particulate truthful operators tin support capable levels of incombustible contented (rock dust) to forestall propagating ember particulate explosions.

NIOSH publications successful this area include:

When a excavation disaster specified arsenic an detonation aliases occurrence does occur, we now cognize nan value of certified information equipment. To protect miners from nan anticipation of a toxic environment, NIOSH approves closed circuit flight respirators (CCER). To beryllium assured of respiratory protection, workers must understand nan meaning of breathing state capacity erstwhile concerning CCERs that are jointly approved by NIOSH and Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA). The caller NIOSH/MSHA standards for this type of respirator person upgraded nan capacity and creation requirements and established an oxygen capacity level for each CCER truthful that a purchaser tin cognize really overmuch oxygen it contains. Click connected these NIOSH publications for much accusation astir breathing state capacity and CCERs:

The excavation environments successful nan virtual reality training person a precocious grade of realism, including simulations of fume and different atmospheric conditions.

NIOSH-approved respiratory protection is simply a cardinal constituent to protect miners from toxic environments – but to respond decently successful vulnerable situations, training and mentation is essential. For this purpose, nan usage of virtual environments for training continues to grow. The due exertion of these technologies offers galore imaginable advantages complete accepted training methods, specified arsenic letting nan trainee participate an situation that is intolerable to sojourn successful nan existent world, observe a segment from different points of view, aliases allowing an inexperienced personification to run machinery.

One of nan goals of nan NIOSH activity successful virtual reality is to find nan champion ways to usage these technologies for training and assessing nan skills of excavation emergency responders. In this case, responders see specially trained individuals (mine rescue aliases occurrence brigade squad members), excavation managers and mineworkers called upon to respond to an emergency.

To thief meet this goal, NIOSH has built nan Mine Rescue and Escape Training laboratory (MRET) astatine its Pittsburgh facility. The MRET includes a unsocial state-of-the-art 360° cylindrical projection strategy that uses stereoscopic 3D exertion to heighten nan immersion and acquisition of nan users. It has nan capacity of putting an full group into a virtual situation that they tin interact with, providing an intuitive training experience. An adjacent 50° curved show acts arsenic a schoolroom situation for coach driven sessions and arsenic a post-simulation debriefing situation pursuing nan sessions tally successful nan 360° environment.

The Oil and Gas Extraction Industry

But mining is not nan only manufacture wherever occupational information has go a priority. What astir those lipid rig workers that Superman saved successful nan movie? When a ace leader is not around, a strategical information program, including due training for workers, is vital. Having what you request to cognize laid retired successful an organized, elemental format successful beforehand of you is simply a awesome measurement to make judge each measurement is covered successful that learning process. That’s why successful 2011 NIOSH put together a packet of Rig Check inspection forms to beryllium utilized arsenic a training instrumentality for short work employees, who whitethorn not beryllium acquainted pinch nan devices and instrumentality recovered connected lipid and state rigs.

Because location are different roles successful nan analyzable lipid rig environment, NIOSH has besides produced 2 videos focusing connected information tips for those progressive successful rig moves, which tin beryllium 1 of nan astir vulnerable parts of an lipid rig operation.

Move It! Rig Move Safety for Roughnecks

One important information precaution is arsenic elemental arsenic wearing a seatbelt erstwhile travelling from rig to rig. Seatbelt usage successful this manufacture is low, while centrifugal conveyance fatality rates are 8.5 that for each U.S. workers. You tin study much astir NIOSH occupational information and wellness efforts successful nan lipid and state manufacture by visiting nan NIOSH Oil and Gas Program Portfolio.

The Commercial Fishing Industry

At nan clip that Clark Kent saved nan lipid rig workers, he was progressive successful an manufacture wherever information is simply a precocious privilege – nan commercialized sportfishing industry. Did you cognize that falling overboard is nan 2nd starring origin of decease among commercialized fishermen nationwide? This whitethorn not beryllium a interest for Superman, but for each nan humans connected committee these ships, this is simply a problem that required immoderate research.

From 2000 to 2010, 182 fishermen died from falls overboard, nary of which were wearing individual flotation devices (PFDs). Researchers from nan NIOSH Alaska Pacific Office conducted a study pinch astir 200 commercialized fishermen who were asked to measure 1 of 4 individual flotation devices (PFDs) while moving connected deck. The extremity was to place wearable PFDs. By identifying PDFs that are wearable during nan workday, and truthful changing nan civilization and cognition astir wearing them, early deaths of this benignant tin beryllium prevented. Putting investigation into practice, individual fishermen and sportfishing companies are changing information policies based connected investigation performed by nan NIOSH Commercial Fishing Safety Program. For example, nan Alaska Scallop Association has established a 100% PFD argumentation while connected platform for its personnel boats. Certain sportfishing vessels of nan Mariner fleet that participated successful nan PFD study instituted a PFD policy, purchasing nan information instrumentality for each crewmembers to deterioration while moving connected deck. Check retired nan recommendations and results from this study connected nan NIOSH Commercial Fishing Topic Page.

A batch has surely changed successful nan 75 years that Superman has been redeeming lives. In that clip we person amended learned really to beryllium our ain heroes done safe workplace practices. Through applicable research, we tin activity pinch occupational information and wellness professionals successful each manufacture to guarantee a safe workplace.

Jaclyn Krah, MA; Richard L. Unger

 Ms. Krah is simply a Health Communication Specialist successful nan NIOSH National Personal Protective Technology Laboratory.

 Mr. Unger is simply a Civil Engineer and Computer Scientist successful nan NIOSH Office of Mine Safety and Health Research.

Posted connected August 7, 2013 by Jaclyn Krah, MA; Richard L. Unger

Source Mining News 2
Mining News 2