Category: COVID-19

The COVID-19 outbreak is at top of mind for environment, health, and safety (EHS) professionals nationwide.

Virginia state flag on a facemask

Virginia Is First State to Adopt Emergency COVID-19 Standard

In a break with the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Virginia became the first state to adopt an emergency temporary standard (ETS) for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Virginia’s COVID-19 ETS applies to every employer in the state, unlike California’s Airborne Transmissible Disease (ATD) standard, which only applies to correctional facilities, funeral homes and […]

California and COVID-19

Cal/OSHA Urges Employers to Follow Its COVID-19 Guidance

The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) urged the state’s employers to carefully review and follow the agency’s guidelines on protecting employees from COVID-19 infections. An expanded statewide order on indoor closures was issued July 13 by California’s Statewide Public Health Officer and Director of the California Department of Public Health (CDPH). The […]

Facemask in heat, summer work

Summer Hazards—Including COVID-19—Are in Full Swing

Employers now must address a host of summer workplace hazards while continuing to protect workers in an ongoing pandemic. Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), a respiratory illness caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, is widespread in most U.S. communities and considered a workplace hazard.

Drug testing urine strips

FMCSA Will ‘Exercise Discretion’ in Drug Testing Enforcement

Motor carriers still must conduct random drug testing of 50% of their drivers. However, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced it may exercise discretion in the enforcement of drug and alcohol testing requirements because the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic continues to cause disruptions within the industry.

Safely Reopening During a Pandemic: A Q&A with Eric Glass, Senior Risk and Safety Advisor for Building Life and Safety Technologies at UL

For many years, the role of environment, health, and safety (EHS) managers was mainly behind the scenes. For EHS managers, simply developing and overseeing their organization’s safety programs reduced risk, but COVID-19 has changed the stakes, with risks played out center stage. Eric Glass, senior risk and safety advisor at UL, a leading global safety […]

EPA sign

UPDATED: EPA’s Civil Enforcement Policy During COVID-19 Pandemic

UPDATE: The EPA has added an addendum to this policy which states that it will terminate on August 31, 2020. The EPA reserves the right to terminate the policy sooner than August 31, but if the Agency chooses to do so, it will provide a 7-day notice period. To learn more, keep reading the original […]

white house

A Look at EPA Deregulation Related to Pandemic Relief EO

Executive Order (EO) 13924, issued in response to COVID-19 by President Donald Trump on May 19, 2020, authorized federal agencies to provide regulatory relief to support recovery of the economy. Trump characterized this order as giving agencies “tremendous power” to cut regulations seen to hinder economic recovery.

Anxiety, depression

COVID-19-Related Mental Health Strain Likely to Increase Workplace Violence

No one is immune from the pandemic, but there are parts of our society that are experiencing greater loss and impact than others. One of the most dangerous effects is also one that is the hardest to identify—that of ideation, often fueled by feelings of injustice, a lack of control, and extreme depression and anxiety.

Disinfectant cleaning

NIOSH Compiles Disinfectant Safety, Health Hazard Info Amid COVID-19

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) recently collected safety and health information on cleaners and disinfectants that employers can use in their hazard communication programs. The NIOSH material includes a table of health hazards and protective measures for chemicals used as disinfectants.