Virgin America Safety Video

This falls a little outside the usual blog post but it’s just too good to pass up.

Virgin American is following FAA protocol that says that passengers must be given clear safety instructions prior to the flight by changing it up a little. Instead of having the airline attendants standing there going through the same old routine that most of us have learned to tune out by the second or third time we board a plane, Virgin has started showing the following video. Pretty cool!

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CPSC Approves New Federal Safety Standard for Bassinets and Cradles

Bassinet

From the CPSC (Consumer Product Safety Commission) website:

WASHINGTON, D.C. – To prevent deaths and injuries to children, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has approved a new federal mandatory standard to improve the safety of bassinets and cradles.  The vote was 4 to 1.

The new federal standard incorporates provisions in the voluntary standard (ASTM F2194-13), Standard Consumer Safety Specification for Bassinets and Cradles. CPSC staff recommended five modifications to F2194-13 standard. These modifications address risks not adequately covered by the voluntary standard. The modifications include:

      1. a clarification of the scope of the bassinet/cradle standard;
      2. a change to the pass/fail criterion for the mattress flatness test;
      3. an exemption from the mattress flatness requirement for bassinets that are less than 15 inches across;
      4. the addition of a removable bassinet bed stability requirement; and
      5. a change to the stability test procedure, requiring the use of a newborn CAMI dummy rather than an infant CAMI dummy.

Read more…


OSHA Annotated PELs Table

From the OSHA website page on Permissible Exposure Levels:

“OSHA recognizes that many of its permissible exposure limits (PELs) are outdated and inadequate for ensuring protection of worker health. Most of OSHA’s PELs were issued shortly after adoption of the Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Act in 1970, and have not been updated since that time. Section 6(a) of the OSH Act granted the Agency the authority to adopt existing Federal standards or national consensus standards as enforceable OSHA standards. Most of the PELs contained in the Z-Tables of 29 CFR 1910.1000 were adopted from the Walsh-Healy Public Contracts Act as existing Federal standards for general industry. These in turn had been adopted from the 1968 Threshold Limit Values (TLVs®) of the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH®). Some consensus standards from the American Standards Association were also adopted at that time, following the 6(a) procedures. Comparable PELs were adopted for shipyards (29 CFR 1915.1000) and construction (29 CFR 1926.55).”

Because of this, OSHA has made available an online tool that allows you to check the PEL on almost any chemical. Simply go to https://www.osha.gov/dsg/annotated-pels/index.html and click on the Table Z-1 , Table Z-2 or Table Z-3 (depending on where your chemical is listed) to find the most up-to-date limits.

 






Traffic Safety Alert- Teen Driving Safety Week

October 20-26 is Teen Driving Safety Week

Parents often worry about their kids’ safety, but they have good reason to be concerned when their teen gets behind the wheel. Young, inexperienced drivers are the most crash-prone drivers on the road. In fact, traffic crashes are the number one cause of death for American teenagers.

Know the risks
Risks that contribute to traffic crashes involving teens are:

  • Impaired driving
  • Too many passengers
  • Driving at night
  • Speeding
  • Loud music
  • Eating
  • Cell phones
  • Bad weather

“So if your kids are driving or close to learning to drive, now’s a great time to reinforce good habits !

Tips For Parents

1. ALWAYS set a good example.

a. Wear your seatbelt every time and insist passengers buckle up too.

b. Stow your cell phone when you’re behind the wheel.

c. Don’t drink and drive.

d. Keep two eyes on the road and two hands on the wheel while driving.

e. eliminate all distractions.

2. Teach the basics.

a. Scan for hazards.

b. Obey speed limits

c. Use your turn signals.

d. Come to a complete stop at stop signs and signals.

e. Keep a safe following and stopping distance.

3. Practice, practice, practice.

a. Conduct as much supervised practice behind the wheel as possible.

b. Vary routes, time of day and driving conditions to ensure your new driver gains confidence in a wide range of situations.

c. Provide hands-on supervised training in heavy traffic and adverse weather conditions.

4. Establish and enforce ground rules.

a. Explain the consequences of unsafe behaviors and other hazards common for new drivers.

b. Establish house rules for young driver’s safety. Consider a Parent-Teen Driving Agreement.

c. Discuss consequences for rule violations and enforce them.

5. Stay involved after your teen is driving alone.

a. Remember parents influence a teen’s driving behavior more than anyone else.

b. Focus on SAFETY rather than control.

c. Monitor where your teen is going, who else will be in the car and when he/she is expected home.

TIPS FOR TEENS

1. Settle into the driver’s seat.

a. Wear your seatbelt every time and insist passengers buckle up too.

b. Stow your cell phone when you’re behind the wheel.

c. Don’t drink and drive.

d. Eliminate all distractions.

2. Remember the basics.

a. Scan for hazards,

b. Keep two eyes on the road and two hands on the wheel while driving.

c. Obey speed limits.

d. Use your turn signals.

e. Come to a complete stop at stop signs and signals.

f. Keep a safe following and stopping distance.

3. Respect the dangers.

a. Know that motor vehicle crashes are the number one cause of death for teens.

b .Remember teen drivers ( age 16 to 19) are involved in fatal crashes at four times the rate of adult drivers ( ages 24 to 69).

c. Keep in mind 58% of teen drivers killed in crashes were not wearing a seat belt in 2012. 50% of passengers killed in crashes were not buckled up.

d. Recognize critical driver errors due to inexperience contribute significantly to crashes.

4. Embrace the freedom and responsibility.

a. Respect and protect your fellow drivers.

b. Take responsibility for your passenger/passengers and stop distracting behaviors.

c. Ask a parent to ride along during challenging driving conditions, like heavy traffic and adverse weather conditions.

d. Follow the rules so you can continue to enjoy the freedom driving brings !

  • Know what you don’t know. A recent NHTSA study found that 75 percent of serious teen crashes were due to a critical teen driver error, with three common errors accounting for nearly half of all serious crashes:
    • driving too fast for road conditions
    • being distracted
    • failing to detect a hazard
  • Make sure your parent teaches you critical driving skills. Try to accept constructive criticism and ask your parent to teach you the following skills to prevent the three common errors that lead to teen crashes:
    • speed management – This includes always following the speed limit, as well as knowing when to adjust your speed in congested zones and residential areas, during inclement weather, and on poorly lit roads.
    • recognizing and avoiding distractions – This means limiting the number of peer passengers, having a no cell phone or electronic device rule, and lowering radio volume.
    • scanning for hazards – This involves observing the surroundings far ahead of the vehicle and side-to-side so that you have sufficient warning to react and avoid a potential crash.
  • Develop house rules for your first year of independent driving.

Act proactively and speak to your teen before a tragedy occurs. Aside from potential financial damage, there are far worse consequences to your teen being involved in a crash. Don’t let your child become one of the thousands of people who die in teen driver-related crashes every year.

And remember – your teen is at risk just like anyone else. Assuming that your child is invincible can be deadly!

Information from Teendriversource.com , MADD, NHTSA, NSC, AAA and teensafedriving.org


Mental Health and the Workplace

Stressed Over Money

Did you know that depression is a “top driver of health care costs to employers”? Or that 1 in 5 employees suffers from some sort of mental health condition?

No? I didn’t either.

Every now and then I find a great article that I have to pass along. “Five Things Employers Need to Know About Mental Health” is such an article. Published online at http://www.insurancethoughtleadership.com, it outlines what every employer needs to know about mental health (hence the title 🙂 and goes on to give 6 steps in helping to provide a solution in the workplace.

It also provides a link to www.workingminds.com, a website whose goal suicide prevention in the workplace.

Check out both sites and start thinking about the problem before it becomes a crisis in your workplace.


Halloween Custome Safety Tips

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Halloween can be a great time of fun for kids and adults alike. In order to make sure it doesn’t turn into a  “not-so-fun” trip to the emergency room, here are a few things to keep in mind when dressing the kids up:

1. Make sure that they can be seen. I don’t care if your child wants to dress up like Dracula, make sure that it’s a reflective Dracula. Trick or treating takes place at dusk or in the dark in a lot of areas of the US, Cars are out, driving around and if they can clearly see your child the odds of an accident just jumped greatly. Think reflective stripes, lighted shoes, anything that will increase their visibility.

2. Speaking of shoes… opt out of the shoes that most often come with the costume. Don’t allow your cinderella to walk the neighborhood in “glass slippers” all night. Instead, have her carry the shoe and wear good quality shoes with traction. Slips, trips and falls occur all too often.

3. Pay close attention to the costume they’re wearing. Making sure that there is nothing that can cause strangulation (e.g. capes are especially dangerous!). Pass on costumes with plastic or non-breathable materials that could suffocate. Pay close attention to accessories as well. Your little guy may want to go around as a warrior but that sword he’s carrying can be dangerous both to him as well as to other children.

4. Masks can obstruct views as well as make it difficult for children to breathe. Let you child know that when he or she is walking they need to remove the mask to be able to see clearly where they are going. They can always slip it back on right before they ring the doorbell but you don’t want them walking around half blind for the night.

5. Make sure that the costume is made of flame resistant materials. There are a lot of open flames on Halloween night (pumpkins lighted with tea lights, for example) and many materials can easily catch fire.

6. While we’re on the  topic of costumes, make sure that the costume you child is wearing fits properly. Loose fitting costumes can get caught on branches and other obstacles and cause your child to fall or worse strangle.

7. Make sure that children have flashlights with fresh batteries in them.

8. Always go trick or treating with your children. You can stay in the background if they’re of the age that they don’t want you right there with them but make sure you can see them at all times. If they think that they are old enough to go trick or treating alone, without an adult, let them know that when they are old enough to go alone, they are too old to go trick or treating. If they grow up with that rules and understanding it won’t be an issue as they get older.