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SAFETY & COMPLIANCE NEWS

Keep up to date on the latest developments affecting OSHA, DOT, EPA, and DOL regulatory compliance.

Regulations change quickly. Compliance Network ensures you never miss a relevant update with a personalized feed of featured news and analysis, industry highlights, and more.

RECENT INDUSTRY HIGHLIGHTS

2023-01-26T06:00:00Z

EPA Per- and Poly-fluoroalkyl Chemical Substances Designated as Inactive on the TSCA Inventory; Significant New Use Rule

SUMMARY: Under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), EPA is proposing a significant new use rule (SNUR) for those per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) that have not been manufactured (including imported) or processed for many years and are consequently designated as inactive on the TSCA Chemical Substance Inventory. PFAS are a group of chemicals that have been used in industry and consumer products since the 1940s because of their useful properties, such as water and stain resistance. Many PFAS break down very slowly and can build up in people, animals, and the environment over time. Exposure at certain levels to specific PFAS can adversely impact human health and other living things. Persons subject to the SNUR would be required to notify EPA at least 90 days before commencing any manufacture (including import) or processing of the chemical substance for a significant new use. Once EPA receives a notification, EPA must review and make an affirmative determination on the notification, and take such action as is required by any such determination before the manufacture (including import) or processing for the significant new use can commence. Such a review will assess whether the use may present unreasonable risk to health or the environment and ensure that EPA can prevent future unsafe environmental releases of the PFAS subject to this SNUR.

DATES: Comments must be received on or before March 27, 2023. Published in the Federal Register January 26, 2023, page 4937.

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Tips to prevent catalytic converter thefts
2023-01-26T06:00:00Z

Tips to prevent catalytic converter thefts

Thefts of catalytic converters have skyrocketed because they contain rare metals (i.e., platinum, palladium, and rhodium).

The price of these three rare metals have increased due to the war in Ukraine. The supply chain has been affected since Russia mines the metals. Catalytic converters are easy targets, as cutting the part from the vehicle takes less than a minute. Some vehicle types — specifically those with a higher clearance, such as trucks, SUVs, buses, and vans —are more desirable because they present less of an obstacle for thieves.

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Have you done a safety policy and procedure review lately?
2023-01-26T06:00:00Z

Have you done a safety policy and procedure review lately?

The start of a new year is an ideal time to review safety policies and procedures if not done recently.

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) uses the Safety Management Cycle (SMC) during carrier audits. The first step in the SMC is a review of policies and procedures. Safety policies should reflect current expectations and what the carrier will not tolerate.

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5 DOT records you may have overlooked
2023-01-26T06:00:00Z

5 DOT records you may have overlooked

Paper can be expensive, especially when it’s missing.

A Maine motor carrier recently learned this lesson the hard way when it was forced to pay a fine of nearly $600 for missing a document from its drivers’ files.

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OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens Standard snags violators in industries other than healthcare
2023-01-26T06:00:00Z

OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens Standard snags violators in industries other than healthcare

Preliminary enforcement data from fiscal year (FY) 2022 shows that the healthcare and social assistance industry took in 63 percent of the Bloodborne Pathogens (BBP) Standard violations. That means 37 percent of the violations went to industries other than healthcare and social assistance, but what were those industries? The data for FY2022 show that the remaining industries included those listed below:

  • NAICS 311 – Food Manufacturing
  • NAICS 325 – Chemical Manufacturing
  • NAICS 332 – Fabricated Metal Product Manufacturing
  • NAICS 333 – Machinery Manufacturing
  • NAICS 337 – Furniture and Related Product Manufacturing
  • NAICS 339 – Miscellaneous Manufacturing
  • NAICS 423 – Merchant Wholesalers, Durable Goods
  • NAICS 424 – Merchant Wholesalers, Nondurable Goods
  • NAICS 441 – Motor Vehicle and Parts Dealers
  • NAICS 446 – Health and Personal Care Stores
  • NAICS 447 – Gasoline Stations
  • NAICS 453 – Miscellaneous Store Retailers
  • NAICS 493 – Warehousing and Storage
  • NAICS 541 – Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services
  • NAICS 561 – Administrative and Support Services
  • NAICS 562 – Waste Management and Remediation Services
  • NAICS 713 – Amusement, Gambling, and Recreation Industries
  • NAICS 712 – Museums, Historical Sites, and Similar Institutions
  • NAICS 721 – Accommodation
  • NAICS 812 – Personal and Laundry Services
  • NAICS 813 – Religious, Grantmaking, Civic, Professional, and Similar Organizations
  • NAICS 928 – National Security and International Affairs

BBP Standard is not just a healthcare regulation

The above list of violators makes it clear that 29 CFR 1910.1030 does not just apply to the healthcare industry as one might think. Instead, the regulation may also apply to any general or shipyard industry, including, but not limited to, manufacturing, wholesale trade, retail, warehousing, technical services, administrative services, waste and remediation, arts and entertainment, accommodation, services, and public administration.

Applicability is about “occupational exposure”

According to the regulation, “[1910.1030] applies to all occupational exposure to blood or other potentially infectious materials …” That means if your organization has one or more employees with “occupational exposure,” it falls under the BBP Standard.

While an “exposure incident” is actual contact with blood or “other potentially infectious material” (or OPIM), “occupational exposure,” on the other hand, is reasonably anticipated contact with blood or OPIM. In addition to being reasonably anticipated, that contact must result from the performance of an employee’s duties. You likely would not reasonably anticipate an office worker to have contact with blood or OPIM, but if you designate the office worker to perform first aid involving blood-related injuries of coworkers, for example, then that employee is considered to have occupational exposure.

It’s worth noting that 1910.1030 does not cover good Samaritans. No employer can anticipate good Samaritan acts, so no employer can anticipate these types of exposures. Anyone who voluntarily assists a person at work is not covered, unless he or she is designated or expected de facto to assist workers.

Which jobs are covered?

Perhaps one of the reasons the BBP Standard is violated outside of the healthcare industry is because OSHA does not spell out which jobs or tasks have occupational exposure, so you, the employer have to determine whether your workers-- housekeepers, maintenance workers, security personnel, or any others– have occupational exposure by definition. Some of the occupations that are often (but not always) associated with occupational exposure include:

  • First aiders
  • Healthcare workers
  • Housekeepers
  • Laundry workers
  • Custodians and maintenance workers
  • Trash haulers/sorters
  • Plumbers
  • Fire brigade members and firefighters
  • Law enforcement
  • Security personnel
  • Lab technicians

Still, it’s important for you, the employer, to make an exposure determination for the jobs and tasks in each workplace. See 1910.1030(c)(2) for more information.

Key to remember

The latest list of violators makes it clear that 1910.1030 does not just apply to the healthcare industry. That means if your organization has one or more employees with occupational exposure, it falls under the BBP Standard.

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