Chemicals, Regulatory Developments, Transportation

Latest OSHA News: Beryllium and Whistleblowers

Late last week, OSHA released a couple of important news updates. One announced the issuance of a direct final rule revising the beryllium standard for general industry, and the other addressed whistleblower issues in the railroad and trucking industries. Read up on both of them right here.
Beryllium

OSHA Issues Direct Final Rule Revising Beryllium Standard for General Industry

On May 4, OSHA issued a direct final rule (DFR) clarifying aspects of the beryllium standard for general industry as it applies to processes, operations, or areas where workers may be exposed to materials containing less than 0.1% beryllium by weight.

The DFR clarifies the definitions of Beryllium Work Area, emergency, dermal contact, and beryllium contamination.  It also clarifies provisions for disposal and recycling, and provisions that the Agency intends to apply only where skin can be exposed to materials containing at least 0.1% beryllium by weight.

The direct final rule will become effective on July 4, 2018, unless the Agency receives significant adverse comments by June 4, 2018.

OSHA Schedules Meeting to Request Comments on Whistleblower Issues in the Railroad and Trucking Industries

On May 3, OSHA scheduled a meeting June 12, 2018, in Washington, D.C., to solicit comments and suggestions from stakeholders in the railroad and trucking industries on whistleblower issues within the jurisdiction of the agency.

OSHA seeks input on how the Agency can better deliver whistleblower customer service, and what kind of assistance the Agency can provide to help explain the whistleblower laws it enforces. This meeting will be the first in a series of meetings requesting public input on the whistleblower program.

The meeting is open to the public, and will be held from 1:00-3:00 p.m. ET in Room N-3437 A-B, at the U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20210. Individuals interested in participating or attending the meeting, either in-person or via telephone, must register by May 29, 2018, at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/occupational-safety-and-health-administration-stakeholder-meeting-registration-45311347460. There is no fee to register. All materials may be submitted electronically at http://www.regulations.gov, which is the Federal eRulemaking Portal using OSHA Docket No. OSHA-2018-0005.

OSHA enforces the whistleblower provisions of 22 statutes protecting employees who report violations of airline, commercial motor vehicle, consumer product, environmental, financial reform, food safety, health care reform, nuclear, pipeline, public transportation agency, railroad, maritime, and securities laws. More information is available at http://www.whistleblowers.gov.