|By Dennis Parnell||
Another Successful Course!
Please join me in congratulating our newest APCAP graduating class!
On a rainy and cold Friday in Manteo, the NC Industrial Commission graduated our Tenth APCAP class. This was the second year this course has been held in Maneto. The group was excited and alot of ground was covered towards improving Accident Prevention across North Carolina. Attendees came from as far as South Carolina, Gastonia, and other points North, South and East to gather in the name of safety.
Please check at the end of this newsletter for an upcoming course near you!
|Is this a hazardous time for kids?||
You don't necessarily think of Easter as a hazardous time, but if you have small children, there are some things you can do to make Easter safer for them.
- Make sure toys don't contain small parts that can easily break off and pose a choking hazard.
- Don't give small candies, especially hard ones, to children under five years old.
- Don't give any peanut-butter-filled eggs or bunnies to children who have nut allergies. Even a chocolate candy that appears to be nut-free may have been made in a factory where it may have come into contact with nuts. Check the label, as it will indicate this.
- Be aware that chocolate contains caffeine, and dark chocolate has more than milk chocolate. If you don't want kids up all night, limit their chocolate consumption, especially before bedtime.
- Eggs can carry salmonella, bacteria that can cause serious illness. Before you boil eggs, make sure you keep them refrigerated. However, the egg tray in the refrigerator door is not the best place to keep them. The best way to store your eggs is to leave them in the carton they came in and keep them in the coldest part of your refrigerator (which isn't the door).
- Never leave raw eggs at room temperature for more than two hours. Don't cook or eat cracked eggs that have been un- refrigerated for more than two hours.
- Always wash your hands before and after handling eggs.
- Hard-boiled, colored Easter eggs left at room temperature for many hours should not be eaten - throw them out. It may seem a shame to waste hard-boiled eggs, but at that point, you should think of them as decoration only.
2007 James Howell Safety Award Winner Tom Thompson
Tom Thompson is pictured receiving the James Howell Safety Award at the 2007 Annual Statewide Safety Conference. Pictured at left are LtoR: Dennis Parnell, Executive Director, Tom Thompson and Tania Whitfield, former CPSC Safety Rep.
In our on-going effort to re-aquaint you with our Regional Safety Council, we continue this month with our Spotlight on Central Piedmont Safety Council. Here is their 2007 Annual Review of activities written by Tom Thompson, Past Chairman and current Board member. Enjoy and learn!
Retreat-1/19/07: This was the second time the Board met in a "Retreat Format" to discuss and plan the years programs and how to improve turnout and membership. This format was suggested in 2006 by Dennis Parnell and has been a useful tool to plan ahead on several issues.
Safety Talk-3/15/07: We held the contest at NC A&T and had 2 contestants from industry and 2 Contestants from NC A&T. The winner of the Industry Contest, Aaron Beale of Epes Transport, Greensboro, represented us at the State Competition and won First Place. The winner of the Student Contest, Peder Hanson, was given recognition at the State Competition and received a prize since he was the only one that competed in a "Student" Contest. We are the only Council that sponsors and conducts a Safety Talk Contest at the college level and we have done this for 5 years.
Statewide Safety Conference- 5/15-18/07: Several of our members are on the Planning Committee for the Conference and also perform the role of moderators at their respective venues. We are also a monetary sponsor of the Conference.
Safety Training Workshop-Mt Airy 4/19/07
Quarterly Meeting at Triad Park-6/21/07: The CPSC met at Triad Park in Colfax, NC for a cookout and information meeting. The meeting was well attended with the speaker being Hubert Barney discussing the proper procedures for receiving an OSHA compliance officer as well as participating in an inspection. Hotdogs were cooked on the grill with chips and soft drinks served.
Half-Day Seminar-9/20/07: The title of this seminar was on Emergency Preparedness with 3 speakers covering the topics of Weather Emergency Preparedness, What is Emergency Management? and Pandemic Flu and You. We had 40 registered participants and the feedback was very favorable. Certificates of Attendance were presented to all attendees.
30-Hour Accident Prevention Certificate Awareness Program- 10/8/07: With 44 attendees and favorable response in the surveys confirms that this program was very well received. CPSC Board Members attended and assisted in setting the room up and serving refreshments.
Board Planning Retreat-11/2/07: It was decided that it was better to have the planning retreat before the next year so we can have more time to develop programs that are relevant and effective in drawing audiences. This was the first opportunity for all the existing Board members to meet in one group. We welcomed new members, Barbara Cassidy, Tania Whitfield and Dr. Dilip Shaw.
Christmas Party-12/6/07: We had a different location this year, Natty Green's in downtown Greensboro, that was well attended by the CPSC Board. We had the 3rd floor loft to ourselves and enjoyed an evening of socializing with each other. A Board meeting was held to start the calendar of events for 2008.
Life Saving Award: We used the State Program to recognize an employee of Epes Transport, who had acted "above and beyond" in an accident situation involving a teenage driver. This was presented at the Seminar in September and the father of the driver helped in the presentation.
Board Meetings/ Topics: We had 6 Board meetings this year and we scheduled them to coincide with existing programs to better utilize the Board member's time and schedules. Minutes were recorded on all meetings and distributed for follow up action.
Membership Application: During the November Retreat it was decided to completely re-do our Membership Application. With everyone's input and spearheaded by Barbara Cassidy, a very attractive and informative Membership Application was designed and approved by the Board.
By-Laws: It had been a while since the CPSC Board had reviewed the By-Laws and since we have several new members it was decided that they needed a thorough review and revision. Again, under Barbara Cassidy's leadership a draft was developed and circulated to the entire Board for comments and suggestions. As a result, we now have By-Laws that have the approval of the entire Board and more correctly reflect the issues that we a faced with in executing our duties.
James Howell Scholarship: We continued our having a scholarship awarded to a Student at NC A&T State University in the Safety and Occupational Health Dept. The $2,000 scholarship was awarded to Twila Simmons.
The CPSC will be providing six workshops this year (plus sponsoring APCAP) that are free to CPSC members.
|By John Nain||
Thursday April 3, 2008 Back to Basics!
8:30 am - Opening Comments - Gary Barger
8:45 - Commissioner of Labor - Cherie Berry
9:00 - "The Hit List" of Major OSHA Compliance Topics for Supervisors and Safety Committee Members Describes the most important OSHA Standards to protect your employees and co-workers and to keep your facility or business in compliance.
10:00 - Break and Vendor Visits
10:15 - Door Prizes
10:20 - Safety Talk Winner
The winner of our local safety talk contest is an hourly employee; they will share their award winning topic with you to use in your business.
10:30 - Effective Training Methods for the Supervisor and Safety Committee Everyone knows training can be borinG, learn how to keep it interesting and effective. Also, how to best keep the records for when your friendly OSHA inspector shows up!
11:05 - Effective Accident Investigations for the Supervisor and Safety Committee Don't wait until you have to investigate that serious or expensive accident to learn how to investigate it! This session will teach you how to investigate incidents - small and large.
11:40 - Lunch and Visit Vendors
12:40 pm - Door Prizes
12:45 - Real Life Examples of the Importance of Safety in the Workplace Examples of near misses presented by actual employees or investigators. No better way to understand why safety is a good idea than to hear these stories! We don't want you to go to sleep after lunch!
1:15 - Selling Safety "Down the Line" for Supervisors Supervisors are very busy in today's globally competitive economy. What and why do they need to create the safety culture for their employees.
1:45 - Break/Vendor Visits/Door Prizes
2:05 - Safety Leadership for the Safety Committee Member It's not always popular to be the safety leader in your business environment as an hourly employee. But if you are truly a leader, safety is a great vehicle to take you there!
2:3 - Effective Inspection Methods for the Supervisor and Safety Committee Members We always hear we are supposed to be doing inspections of our facility or business environment, but what are the most important things and what do they look like?
3:05 - Major Door Prizes
3:15 - Adjourn
Here is the On-Line Link to register for our Safety School! The
school this year is designed for Hourly Safety Committee Members
and Supervisors. Plant Managers, Safety Managers and EHS
Coordinators will get a real lift by sending their Safety
Committee Members and Supervisors to this school! The fee is
only $50 for early registration. Please look over the attached
brochure and agenda for a summary of our presenters and their
|by Mike Bingham||
Back in the day I had an expression I used quite a bit that went like this, "If I can get a hold of it, I can tote it." It really didn't matter what "it" was; my main concern was whether or not I could get a grip on it. But, as I've said many times since, "Strong don't mean smart."
If you have back/lifting related injuries in your workplace, could it be because there is no "rule" or stated limit on how much weight employees are allowed to lift? If we let ourselves lift all the weight we want, we will almost certainly use our own physical ability to judge how much weight we can lift. And, the judgment can be clouded by a need to hurry, a lack of knowing our physical limitations, or a desire to prove how strong we are. The question, "How much can I lift?" is sometimes answered when a back injury suddenly shows us the number. Additional lifting injuries can also occur to other joints like knees, shoulders and elbows, and most if not all lifting injuries are preventable.
We often specify in our rules:
Eye protection required
Wear seat belts while operating forklifts
These are good practices, and it may well be worthwhile to add a rule to specify the maximum weight employees are allowed to lift alone. I know, I know! There is no magic number that's safe for everyone. But a number carefully chosen by a qualified ergonomist or company physician who has looked at your process is much better than just allowing ole Bingham to walk in and explore his lifting ability on company time.
Adding a rule isn't necessarily a bad thing. We don't want to manage by rules per se, but it just may be OK to have a lifting rule in place to protect workers. Some rules say "Hey, the company doesn't want you to get hurt. We value you and your well-being. We don't expect you to lift over (your number here) pounds while working here."
Maybe the cause of lifting injuries is that there are no limits applied to the task. We can't meet an expectation that isn't known. Choose a weight limit that is well below most people's full lifting potential, communicate it to all employees (post it by the entrance), ensure that it is followed, and see what happens!
Editor's Note: Mike Bingham is the Western Area Safety Representative for the North Carolina Industrial Commission. Mike is one of the 10 members of the North Carolina Industrial Commission's Safety Department who are out there Working for You! to make our workplaces safer and better for each and every worker by reducing injuries to employees and saving money for employers through education and training. You can contact Mike at: firstname.lastname@example.org or call: 919.218.9045
With Warmer Weather Just Around the Corner...
Except for the diehard grillers who grill all year long, everyone else may be starting to think about firing up the ol' grill again, now that warmer weather is here. Here are some tips for safe grilling:
1. Check gas tanks for leaks or dents and immediately replace damaged or rusted tanks.
2. Place your grill out of the wind to prevent flare-ups.
3. Clean grease drip pans frequently. Keep an eye out for black smoke, which is an indicator of a grease fire. Trim fat from meats to prevent flare-ups.
4. Use long-handled tools made specifically for grilling.
5. Wear an apron to protect yourself from grease splatters and sparks. Use heat-resistant mitts. Do not cook in loose clothing.
6. Open the lid before turning on the gas and lighting the grill to avoid gas buildup, which could cause an explosion.
7. Place your grill on a level, fireproof surface at least 12 feet below ceilings, overhangs, or tree branches.
8. Remember to turn off gas supply valves when grilling is completed.
1. Use gas, kerosene, or other fluids as a firestarter.
2. Use an outdoor grill inside the home or in tents. Grilling inside may cause carbon monoxide poisoning.
3. Reapply starter fluid to a fire. A solid starter is safer than a liquid starter.
4. Dump hot coals in paper bags, near the base of a tree, or where someone may step on them. Make sure coals are completely extinguished and the ashes are cold before disposing in a metal container.
Corrosives are substances that burn, irritate, or destroy tissue and
other materials by chemical action.
Corrosives can be liquids, powders, pellets, or gases. Most have a strong, irritating odor. While they are necessary for some jobs, they can also be found in household cleaning agents and in commonly-used products such as batteries. Because you can't always avoid using them, you should be aware of their hazards.
How can they hurt me?
Chemical burns. Your skin and the mucous membranes of your eyes, nose, mouth, and respiratory tract are targets for irritation and burning from contact with corrosives. Some corrosives, especially acids, will cause a burning, irritating sensation, and may be very painful. On the other hand, some corrosives, such as battery acid, may not cause any immediate pain even though they are still causing damage. Instead, you may feel a slippery sensation instead of a burning irritation.
Breathing problems. Corrosive gases, fumes, or mists can irritate or burn the linings of the nose, throat, and respiratory tract. When this happens, the body produces fluids to try to protect the tissue. This can lead to a build-up of fluid in the lungs, a life-threatening condition.
Poisoning. Many corrosives are toxic. They can get into your system through inhalation, absorption through the skin, or ingestion. Overexposure to corrosives requires medical attention and could lead to a life-threatening condition.
What do I do?
At home, read the instructions on the container before using a household cleaner. At work, be familiar with the product's material safety data sheet for safe handling procedures, required personal protective equipment, and first aid procedures. If someone comes into contact with a corrosive, follow the instructions on the container, call poison control, or call 9-1-1 if immediate attention is necessary.
Good leadership involves knowing how to interact with people
Sometimes people we know to be extremely intelligent just don't come across that way. They seem to lack the knack for dealing effectively with people. This could be a matter of social awkwardness, but it also could be something else - such a person might be lacking in emotional intelligence.
Intellect is a combination of one's intelligence quotient (IQ), which describes how smart a person is, and one's emotional intelligence (called EI or EQ), a factor which describes how well a person is able to put their IQ to use. To fully take advantage of a high IQ, a person must know how to effectively employ his or her knowledge. Emotional intelligence is determined in part by a person's ability to self-manage, resolve conflict, and be aware of how individual emotions affect not only one's own actions, but also the actions of others.
Learn to master both IQ and EQ, and you will have unlocked the key to good leadership.
Are you suffering from lower back pain?
Do you get frequent headaches, find yourself dizzy or become short of breath? Do your muscles ache? Are you experiencing difficulty with heartburn or weight gain? Perhaps worse than the pain of individual symptoms like these is the anxiety you may feel about what the symptoms suggest or the effects they are having on your professional or personal life. Maybe your headaches make it hard to concentrate at work, or your muscle aches make it all but impossible to play with your kids or enjoy your hobbies. These physical symptoms affect your quality of life.
Any one of the physical symptoms listed above could be a sign of a serious medical problem, but ironically, the symptoms that are causing you stress could actually be caused by stress itself. Add psychological feelings of anger, impatience, irritability, violence, and a lack of self-confidence to the previous list and it's easy to see that stress-induced symptoms can become overwhelming and even unbearable - not only for you, but for your family, friends, and coworkers, too.
What is it?
Stress is a physical or mental response to the pressures of an event or factors of living in general. While stress can be positive, providing challenges and often sending your body into a survival mode of increased productivity, it can also be negative. Stress often becomes negative when it continues for prolonged periods, and too much stress can threaten both your physical and mental well-being as your body's defenses are weakened.
Job stress is the leading cause of stress among adults and often involves change in the workplace. While stress is different for everyone, you might not even be aware of the things that are affecting you most. For example, deadlines, changes in job duties, or an increase in workload can all cause stress. But have you considered the effects of things like illness, company policies, rumors, or even your working environment as contributing factors to stress?
To minimize the negative effects of stress, you might begin by identifying your most frequent and serious sources of stress. Remember to give all factors consideration. Do you have particular issues with change in general? Is your working environment noisy or stressful in other ways? Something as simple as an uncomfortable temperature could be causing you more stress than you realize. Once identified, the effects of particular stresses can be limited. Try employing some of the following methods to help manage stress.
Share your stress with others. Don't take on insurmountable tasks alone, and don't be afraid to talk to others about your stress.
Take breaks. Learn to fully relax.
Release stress. Exercising, deep breathing, and even laughing can get rid of stress.
Take care of your body. Proper rest and diet are essentials for dealing with stress.
Change your lifestyle. Learn to better manage your time or delegate to reduce stress.
Change your attitude. Instead of dwelling on the negatives of the day, focus on the positives.
|by Michael Nance||
Can you guess what it is? The date is March 9, 2008. No idea? Okay, the time is 2:00 AM. Surely you've guessed it. If not, the answer is Daylight Saving Time. By the way, I learned from a government web site that it is spelled without the "S"; it is not Daylight Saving(S) Time. I've mispronounced this for years apparently. The phrase itself is really inaccurate, since no daylight is actually "saved". Seems the word "shift" would be a better substitute.
Most all fire departments promote people to change the batteries in their smoke detectors when they change their clocks because Daylight Saving Time provides a suitable reminder. I've read somewhere that a working smoke detector more than doubles a person's chances of surviving a home fire. More than 90 percent of homes in the United States have smoke detectors, but one-third are estimated to have dead or missing batteries. That's amazing. A less than $3 battery can save your life. Do not place the 9 volt battery to your tongue to see if it's still good, just replace it. (You can test it later on the nose of the neighbor's cat).
Everyday I hear the news of a house fire in or around the Charlotte area. Most of the time, folks are not seriously injured but about once a week, tragedy strikes and someone dies; either an occupant or a firefighter. Even if no one is killed or injured, massive loss of personal property is a result. Even today, as I write the article, a brush fire fueled by high winds has taken out two homes in south Charlotte. Insurance cannot replace everything.
So strike ONE, you can mark on your list to check the smoke detector batteries.
Let's take it just a bit further. Let's say the smoke detector has alerted you to a fire during the evening hours. (And no, it's not the wife's cooking). Rushing downstairs, you see the flames and grab the fire extinguisher from the coat closet. (You do have an extinguisher at home, right) Remembering the NCIC course of how to use an extinguisher, you P.A.S.S. Pull the pin, Aim at the base. Squeeze the trigger. Sweeping the agent side to side. What's that, it isn't working?
I wish the media would also remind folks to check their fire extinguisher's at the same time they check the smoke detectors. You have them checked every month at work, you should at least check the ones at home twice a year if not every month. Here's a little tip. Just don't "look" at it. Take it off the hanger or mount and clean it, do a hydrostatic test by turning it upside down a few times to feel for movement inside the canister. Really check it out. Also, check to see if you have the proper type and size for the area you want to protect. Quickly here: Class A: Wood, Paper, Class B: Flammable liquids, Class C: Electrical, Class D: Combustible metals. Most folks probably have an "ABC" class extinguisher in their home.
Ok, strike TWO, you can mark on your list to check the fire extinguishers.
Just a little bit further but takes only minutes to do. If you've read any of the past articles (they can be viewed on the web site), you'll know that I have experience in Band-Aids. Large and small. My first aid kits are located in the garage, kitchen, upstairs bathroom and in my car. Even though I have to children, I am the one getting into them quite often though it's been just about a year since the bird incident. (I do have a very small scar).
If you've taken the CPR/First Aid course all of the Safety Representatives conduct, you have seen the photo of a first aid kit in the National Safety Council workbook. During all of my sessions I like to remind folks to check their first aid kits out as soon as they get home and place missing items on the grocery list. Too often we get into those kits, use something and sooner or later, run out of Band-Aids. (Except for those small "dots"). If you're like me, you might need to inspect and update the inventory of your first aid kits once a month, but for the most part checking them twice a year is fine. Nothing is worse than needing something "right now" and having to run between kits only to have no essential materials handy.
Finally, strike THREE, you can mark on your list to check the first aid kits.
Depending on your individual household, you may need to check things out more often than twice a year. It takes less than 30 minutes to do all of these things. All of these "strikes" can save your life, prevent further injury, or minimize property loss. Remember that March 9, 2008 we turn the clocks forward, but you don't have to wait for Daylight Saving Time. Let's review:
1) Replace the batteries in the smoke detector.
2) Check the fire extinguishers
3) Inventory the first aid kits.
Three strikes and you've completed a simple checklist. If you are in doubt, check it out. Did you get it? Three "strikes" and check it "out"? Corny I know, but perhaps you'll remember if you write it down now on the calendar of things to do.
Editor's note: Michael Nance is the NCIC Blue Ridge, Southern & Western Piedmont areas Safety Representative. If you are interested in having one of our programs in your area, please give Michael a call at 919-218-9047 or email him at email@example.com.
Extension cords can pose hazards at home...
Recently, my wife and me decided to re-model our home. She had me doing more tasks than I really wanted to, but being the good husband that I am, I readily gave in without much fuss. During the process, we had extension cords EVERYWHERE! Now with me being the safety person that I am, I figured out very fast that this was a problem, especially after my big self tripped a couple of times. (now let me tell you, it isn't a pretty sight when a 230 pound 55 year old man, i.e. me, trips and does the little dance to keep from falling. That got me to thinking!
You may not give a second thought to the extension cords you use in your home, but consider the following injuries that were investigated by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC):
A 15-month-old girl put an extension cord in her mouth and suffered an electrical burn that required surgery.
Two young children were injured in a fire caused by an overloaded extension cord in their family's home. A lamp, TV set, and heater had been plugged into a single, light-duty extension cord.
A 65-year old woman was treated for a fractured ankle after tripping over an extension cord.
Each year, about 4,000 injuries associated with electric extension cords are treated in hospital emergency rooms. About half the injuries involve fractures, lacerations, or sprains from people tripping over them. Thirteen percent of the injuries involve children under five years of age, with half of those injuries being electrical burns to the mouth. In addition, about 3,300 residential fires originate from extension cords each year, primarily from short circuits, overloading, damage, and/or misuse of extension cords. The CPSC recommends following these safety rules for extension cord use:
- Use extension cords only when necessary and only on a temporary basis.
- Use cords with polarized plugs or grounded three-prong plugs.
- High wattage appliances need special, heavy-duty extension cords.
- Extension cords used outside should be specifically designed for such use.
- Always insert plugs fully so that no parts of the prongs are exposed.
- Never cover cords with rugs or other objects. Trapped heat can result in a fire.
- Do not overload cords with too many appliances.
- Don't use cracked cords or those that feel hot to the touch.
Please don't become a statistic and use these cords safely both at home and at work.
Now you know. Dennis :)
Fun and useless tidbits
Saturday mail delivery in Canada was eliminated by Canada Post on February 1, 1969!
Until the nineteenth century, solid blocks of tea were used as money in Siberia!
The two-foot long bird called a Kea that lives in New Zealand likes to eat the strips of rubber around car windows!
The fear of vegetables is called Lachanophobia!
Every year, kids in North America spend close to half a billion dollars on chewing gum!
In Illinois, the law is that a car must be driven with the steering wheel.
In Georgia, it is against the law to slap a man on the back or front.
The longest recorded flight of a chicken is 13 seconds!
The only 15 letter word that can be spelled without repeating a letter is "uncopyrightable"!
What Do You Call Four Bullfighters In Quicksand? Quattro Sinko.
Where Do You Find a Dog With No Legs? Right Where You Left Him.
What's The Difference Between a Bad Golfer And a Bad Skydiver? A Bad Golfer Goes, Whack, Dang! A Bad Skydiver Goes Dang! Whack .
The NC Industrial Commission Safety Education Section stands ready to assist you with your Safety training needs. We offer a variety of courses, designed to suit your needs. Please give one of our Industrial Safety Representatives a call.
NC Industrial Commission