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Cal/OSHA Issues $1.75 Million Fine in Valero Refinery Death

On May 19, the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) announced a combined $1,753,375 in fines for the Valero Refinery of Benicia and 3 of its contractors following an investigation into the confined space death of a 35-year-old worker. On November 12, 2021, a worker lost consciousness after descending into a regenerator overflow […]

Faces of EHS: Kevin Kirk on the Importance of Inclusion and Communication

Kevin Kirk began his career in construction management. After realizing how critical safety is in construction, he began working in EHS after completing all the necessary certifications. He believes that the biggest safety challenge safety professionals face is changing the mindset that safety is not a burden or something extra to be done, but that […]

OSHA Regional Offices Issue Heat Cautions

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regional offices in Boston and Dallas have publicly cautioned employers within the past week to protect workers from the hazards of excessive heat. OSHA’s efforts in the past year to address workplace heat hazards have included a national emphasis program (NEP) of outreach, inspection, and enforcement, as well as […]

Oregon Adds Permanent Heat, Smoke Standards

The Oregon Occupational Safety and Health Division (Oregon OSHA) recently announced new permanent workplace safety and health standards for heat and wildfire smoke exposures. Oregon rules for heat illness prevention and agricultural labor housing take effect June 15. The wildfire smoke protection standard takes effect July 1. “As we enter what we expect will be […]

Ask the Expert: OSHA’s SCBA Requirements

In our latest installment of Ask the Expert, brought to you by the team of industry experts at EHS Hero®, we look at a recent question from a subscriber asking about OSHA’s requirements for Self-Contained Breathing Apparatuses (SCBA) in the workplace. See what the experts had to say.  Q: What are the requirements of having SCBAs […]

How’s Your Training Program?

Do you have a strong employee safety training program? While training alone is not enough to prevent workplace injuries and illnesses, it remains a key element of an effective safety and health management program. Research has shown that education and training can increase workers’ knowledge and help guide their actions and behaviors on the job. […]

PVC Under Scrutiny as Hazardous Waste

As a result of a legal agreement reached on May 3, 2022, with the Center for Biological Diversity (CBD), the EPA has nine months to analyze the toxic impact of polyvinyl chloride (PVC). PVC, also commonly referred to as vinyl, is widely used for many functions, and there are currently 7 billion pounds of the […]

Back to Basics: OSHA’s Whistleblower Protections

Back to Basics is a weekly feature that highlights important but possibly overlooked information that any EHS professional should know. This week, we examine OSHA’s whistleblower protections and how to establish an anti-retaliation program in the workplace. Reporting safety issues is an integral part of maintaining an effective, positive safety environment in the workplace. Workers […]

Growing Support for Biden to Declare Climate Emergency

The American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE), representing 7,500 of the EPA’s 14,300 employees, “signaling its dissatisfaction with the White House’s level of action on climate,” will ask the Biden administration to declare a climate emergency, reports Bloomberg Law. “The request represents a marker for the [AFGE] Council 238 when it sits down with the […]

Senate Urged to Confirm EPA Nominees as Enforcement Languishes

In light of a steep decline in EPA enforcement, a coalition of 55 environmental groups and 144 EPA alumni sent a letter dated May 4, 2022, to U.S. Senate leaders urging the confirmation of the Biden nominee to lead the EPA enforcement division. Annual enforcement reports published by the EPA reveal approximately a 50% decline […]