Winter Weather Advisory: Preparing for Safe Snow Removal from Rooftops and Other Elevated Structures

Snow removal can be dangerous business, particularly when removing snow and ice from rooftops and other elevated structures. As we head into the winter season, now is a good time to review safe snow removal practices. OSHA’s General Duty Clause imposes a duty on employers to protect workers from recognized serious hazards in the workplace, including snow removal from roof and other elevated structures. How to meet the duty of care: Before the work begins, employers should:
  • Plan ahead for safe snow removal from roofs

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Winter is Coming: Tips for Cold Weather Work and Avoiding Hazards

As the seasons begin to change, winter weather creates hazardous worksite conditions. Winter brings snow, ice, wind chills, and persistent temperatures below freezing. Workers, as well as supervisors and employers, need to take winter safety into consideration throughout everyday worksite duties. Injuries that are commonplace at the worksite year-round become more likely during the winter months. These tips are intended to provide employers and workers with the tools to implement safety precautions throughout the cold months. There are no OSHA specific standards concerning work in…
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OSHA and the Roofing Industry: Fall Protection

The duty to have fall protection in construction (OSHA section 1926.501) regularly tops the list of most frequently cited OSHA standards following workplace inspections. When it comes to the roofing industry, however, fall protection—though of paramount importance—is not the only requirement for an effective safety program. This article will address some critical considerations for roofers when it comes to ensuring compliance with applicable OSHA standards and, more generally, keeping their workers safe. COMPLIANCE WITH PROVISIONS In 2016, OSHA published its “Recommended Practices for Safety and…
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It’s Summer and I Have Nothing to Wear: Personal Protective Equipment and Summer Dress Codes

Summer is here, and so is the sun. That means many people will try to stay cool while working and many businesses relax dress codes to allow for shorts and sandals. But workplace hazards do not take a summer vacation, and the hot weather also brings its own dangers. A previous blog post addressed steps employers could take to prevent heat illness. Not only should employers implement heat illness prevention programs, but they must continue to make sure workers wear their personal protective equipment (PPE)…
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U.S. Department of Labor Announces Worker Safety Grants and Social Media Campaign Aimed at Keeping Young Workers Safe

OSHA recently announced the receipt of $10.5 million in Susan Harwood Training Grants. This grant money can be used by employer associations, labor unions, joint labor/management associations, Indian tribes, colleges and universities, and for nonprofit organizations, including community and faith-based groups. The Harwood Training Grant program supports hands-on training for employers and employees working in industries with high injury, illness, and fatality rates. Additionally, these grants are aimed to aid underserved vulnerable workers, especially temporary workers and those with limited English language proficiency skills. These…
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As the Weather Warms Employers Must Be Wary of Heat-Related Hazards Early On

OSHA requires that employers provide a workplace free of known safety hazards – this includes protecting workers from heat-related illnesses. Beginning in 2011, heat safety became a focus of OSHA with its Heat Illness Prevention Campaign which includes tailored training, publications, and outreach programs designed to educate employers on the dangers of working in heat. When it comes to preventing heat illness, it is important to think ahead. It is common sense that the risk of heat-related illness becomes greater during the late spring and…
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It’s a Wonderful Time of Year! Let’s Keep it That Way!

Holiday plates overflow, we are more stressed, tired, rushed, and a little inclined to cut corners and bend a few rules.  Although there tend to be fewer work accidents this time of year, it is no time to ignore those basic practices we rely on all year round to ensure those around us make it home safely to enjoy the holiday. Ladders Hang the stockings with care. Don’t climb on chairs or other furniture to display your holiday decorations. Make sure step stools and ladders…
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