Chapter Corner

Newsroom & Insights: May/June 2016

Apprenticeship

This spring, first-year IEC Apprentices will be embarking on a career in a profession that is unlike so many others. They wisely chose a career in the electrical field where the electrical wiring, troubleshooting, and equipment installations they will perform every day will never be outsourced. A career where new technology does not threaten to eliminate their job, it serves to enhance it.

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A Safe Job Site Is a Productive Job Site

A safe job site is a productive job site. Any injury on the job site not only eliminates the injured worker’s output, but it also affects other workers performance while they attend to the injured worker and the aftermath of the injury. Safety is not only an economical but also an emotional issue on any job site.

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Fingers - Mind Your Digits

Our hands and fingers are some of our greatest assets, which is why giving them the attention they deserve is important for a host of reasons. We use our hands and fingers to do many things on a daily basis. They pull wire, make terminations, steer vehicles, create wonderful works of art, shape and form metal and wood, and they make the impossible possible. Unfortunately, many know what it is like to not have these assets at their disposal and understand the challenges that presents.

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Use PPE in the Workplace and Keep Your "Eyes" on the Prize

The American workplace is a minefield of potential dangers, coming in all sizes and shapes – sparks, noise, chemicals, falling objects, sharp edges, just to name a few. The smart plan would be to encase workers in a protective bubble, but odds are that such an endeavor would severely hinder productivity. Still, procedures have to be instituted to safeguard employees and prevent workplace injuries, which can result in soaring workers’ compensation costs for employers.

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Developing Safety Champions

Normally when we think about our “safety leaders,” we think of people who have been selected to be the safety spokesperson to represent the company’s programs, policies, procedures, or goals. We then designate these people titles such as safety director, safety manager, or something similar that identifies them as the safety go-to person. In other instances, we expect other members of a company’s management team to be the safety leader, but usually safety becomes a side-bar to their normal duties.

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Arc Energy Reduction Considerations

Protecting workers from the hazards of electric shock has been understood for decades. Recently though, more attention has been given to the role electrical equipment can play in minimizing arc flash hazards. The energy exposure of an arc flash incident can be significantly reduced when attention is given to the type of equipment specified and where it is installed in an electrical system.

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What You Need to Know About OSHA's New Silica Rule

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently announced a new rule that will better protect workers from the harmful effects of breathing respirable crystalline silica dust. Prevalent at certain workplaces, including construction sites and foundries, the dust can lead to lung cancer, silicosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and kidney disease.

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How to Handle an OSHA Investigation

Every company cares about safety and health in the workplace and want their employees to remain healthy. In an effort to protect their employees, companies invest substantial time, effort, and money in trying to create safe and healthy work environments. They would do this without regard to government regulation. Managing compliance with federal and state Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requirements, however, is an indispensable part of managing safety in this day and age.

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OSHA and Department of Justice Double Teaming Employers

On December 17, 2015, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), an agency of the Department of Labor (DOL), and the Department of Justice (DOJ) formally agreed to “double team” employers to investigate and prosecute worker endangerment violations. While they have worked together in the past, this is now a formal arrangement that employers should be very concerned about. While facing OSHA is bad enough, it’s a walk in the park compared to tangling with the DOJ.

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