Friday, November 11, 2011


If you own or operate an ATV for agricultural work in California, the ATV should be licensed with the Dept.of Motor Vehicles.

Protective gear keeps you safe and in control of your ATV. Helmets certified for ATV use provide head protection & cut death risk by 1/2; they should be secure & impact resistant, yet allow peripheral vision. A helmet face shield, goggles, or glasses can provide eye protection from flying dirt, rocks, insects, or vegetation.

Gloves and boots protect your hands and feet, and allow you to maintain a firm grip and control over the ATV. Long sleeves & pants protect exposed skin; padded & reinforced clothing is ideal.

When riding, scan ahead and to the side for obstacles, uneven terrain, vehicles, people, & animals. Reduce speed to at least 15 mph if you see a potential hazard. Pay attention to guy wires & barbed wire fences; they are low profile and difficult to see.

Keep the ATV off of public roads; ATVs are only allowed to cross public roads. If you must cross a road, remember that ATVs are low to the ground and may not be visible. Lights, reflectors, & flags can make the ATV visible.

In CA, there are specific regulations for riders under 18-years of age. For more information, call your local Cal/OSHA office or visit the website

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

What is a Work Related Injury?

An injury or illness must be work-related to be covered under OSHA Injury and Illness Recordkeeping requirements (29 CFR 1904). That is, a causal connection must exist between the employment and the injury of illness for a case to be recordable.

OSHA has concluded that the employer is in the best position to determine work-relatedness, not an M.D. or the OSHA inspector. However, inspectors may second-guess employers, so you might consider erring on the side of caution. Use your best judgment, being aware that the consequences of over-reporting are minimal whereas underreporting can result in citations as well as a negative impression of the workplace on the part of the OSHA inspector.

OSHA considers an injury or illness to be work-related if an event or exposure in the work environment either caused or contributed to the resulting condition or significantly aggravated a pre-existing injury or illness. Work-relatedness is presumed for an injury or illness resulting from events of exposures occurring in the work environment, unless an exception in Section 1904.5(b)(2) specifically applies or the employer can prove it is a pre-existing condition and nothing in the workplace aggravated it.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

National Eye Institute - A Great Informative Site on Eye Info :

Eye injuries account for an estimated 100,000 physician visits per year at a cost of more than $175 million.

90% of sports-related eye injuries can be avoided with the use of protective eyewear. Protective eyewear includes safety glasses and goggles, safety shields, and eye guards designed for a particular sport. Ordinary prescription glasses, contact lenses, and sunglasses do not protect against eye injuries. Safety goggles should be worn over them.


Saturday, June 25, 2011

Eye Protection for Workers Near Eye Hazards – Regardless of Contact Lens Wear

NIOSH recommends workers be permitted to wear contact lenses when handling hazardous chemicals, provided that the safety guidelines below are followed & that contact lenses are not banned by regs or contraindicated by medical or industrial hygiene recommendations.

Still conduct a workplace eye injury hazard evaluation by including assessment:
• Chemical exposures
• Contact lens wear among affected employees
• Appropriate eye and face protection for contact lens wearers

At a minimum, an evaluation of the properties of the chemicals in use—include concentration, permissible exposure limits, known eye irritant/injury properties, form of chemical (powder, liquid, or vapor), and possible routes of exposure. An assessment for contact lens wearers needs to include a review of info about lens absorption, absorption for class of chemicals in use, & an account of injury experience for the employer or industry, if known.

NIIOSH says that wearing contact lenses do not appear to require enhanced eye protection. For chemical vapor, liquid, or caustic dust hazards, the minimum protection consists of well-fitting non-vented or indirectly vented goggles or full-face piece respirators. Close-fitting safety glasses with side protection provide limited chemical protection but do not prevent chemicals from bypassing the protection.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


For employees who use chrome plating baths, weld or cut chromium-containing metals, such as stainless steel; handle dry chromate-containing pigments or spray chromate-containing paints and coatings, this pertains.

• Hexavalent chromium enters the body in two ways: (1) inhaled when chromium dust, mist, or fumes are in the air, 2) particles can be swallowed if the dust gets on hands, clothing, or beard, or in food/beverages.

• Hexavalent chromium can irritate the respiratory tract in the nose, throat, & lungs. Repeated or prolonged exposure can damage the mucous membranes of the nasal passages causing ulcers. In some cases, septum damage (the wall separating nasal passages) develops a hole.

• Prolonged skin contact can result in dermatitis and skin ulcers. Some workers develop an allergic sensitization to chromium. Kidney damage has been linked to high dermal exposures.

• Hexavalent chromium is an eye irritant. Direct eye contact with chromic acid or chromate dusts can cause permanent eye damage.

• Wear respiratory protection.
• Wear protective clothing & eye-face protection if there is the potential that hexavalent chromium can come in contact with eyes or skin.
• Always use change rooms & washing facilities provided before eating, drinking, smoking, or using toilet.
• Remove contaminated clothing B4 entering designated eating & drinking areas.
• Use HEPA filter vacuuming to keep surfaces as free as possible of material containing hexavalent chromium.
• Collect/dispose of all waste in sealed, impermeable containers.
• Flush eye area immediately for at least 15 min. & get medical attention.
• For skin exposure, wash thoroughly with soap and water. Get medical attention if irritation persists.
• For inhalation, move the person to fresh air & get medical attention.

Saturday, May 14, 2011


• Insert plugs fully so that no part of prongs is exposed when the extension cord is used.
• Disconnecting? – pull the plug rather than the cord.
• Use only three-wire extension cords for appliances with three-prong plugs. Never remove the third (round or U-shaped) prong. It is a safety feature designed to reduce risk of shock & electrocution.
• Where furniture may be pushed against an extension cord where the cord joins the plug, use a special "angle extension cord," designed for use in these instances.
• Noticeable warming of plastic parts is expected when used at maximum rating. However, if cord feels hot or with softening of plastic, this is a warning that the plug wires or connections are failing & cord should be discarded / replaced.
• Never cover any part of an extension cord with newspapers, clothing, rugs, or any objects while the cord is in use. Never place an extension cord where it is likely to be damaged by heavy furniture or foot traffic.
• Don't use staples or nails to attach extension cords to a baseboard or to another surface. This could damage the cord and present a shock or fire hazard.
• Don't overload extension cords by plugging in appliances that draw a total of more watts than the rating of the cord.
• Use special, heavy duty extension cords for high wattage appliances such as air conditioners, portable electric heaters, and freezers.
• When using outdoor tools and appliances, use only extension cords labeled for outdoor use.
(From the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission)

Friday, March 25, 2011


1. Add approved water only — not acid.
2. Keep electrolyte level above separator protectors.
3. Keep battery top clean and dry.
4. Keep flame and metal away from the battery top.
5. Keep vent caps tightly in place.
6. Do not use battery with specific gravity below 1.120.
7. Cool before charging or operating if battery is above 115ºF.
8. Charge only at proper voltage and ampere-hours.
9. Keep truck compartment and battery cover open during charging.
10 Have an eyewash station nearby! (or a sink converted into an eyewash)
.......CAUTION - DO NOT OVERFILL........

Approved Water — in most areas of the U.S., tap water is satisfactory of use in lead acid batteries. But, your manufacturer may advise otherwise upon request & area. Use distilled water when in doubt if the public water source is not approved.

Thursday, February 24, 2011


1. Develop a zero-tolerance policy toward energized work. Get serious about "no hot work." This includes conducting an electrical hazard analysis for energized work.
2. Get out and see what your workers are doing – in the shop or field).
3. Develop checklists or other ways to track who's qualified to perform which tasks (e.g. job-task analyses to provide a blueprint of employees' activities).
4. Train your employees–to be qualified to perform tasks. They must know the construction, operation, and hazards associated with the equipment they're using. Supervisors should be responsible for knowing what employees can do safely.
5. Develop safe work practices and procedures. Practices like energized electrical work permits, clearance procedures, & switching orders can help prevent accidents & can help document that right steps were taken. (Especially important in case of an accident.)
6. Perform periodic safety audits. When workers know they’ll be subject to random audits, they’ll try to maintain safe work procedures & practices.
7. Conduct job briefings any time the scope of the work changes significantly & when new or different hazards occur.
8. Be cautious about implementing safety awards programs, especially if they may discourage accident reporting.
9. Become familiar with NFPA 70E and the IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) Guide for Performing Arc Flash Hazard Calculations.
10. Document everything. Show a good-faith effort; OSHA will notice. "If it’s not in writing, you never did it."

Saturday, January 29, 2011


FLAMMABILITY is defined as how easily something will burn or ignite, causing fire or combustion. The degree of difficulty required to cause combustion of a substance is quantified through fire testing. Internationally, a variety of test protocols exist to quantify flammability. The ratings achieved are used in building codes, insurance requirements, fire codes & other regulations governing the use of building materials as well as the storage & handling of highly flammable substances inside & outside of structures and in surface and air transportation. For example, changing occupancy by altering the flammability of the contents requires the owner of a building to apply for a building permit to make sure that the overall fire protection design basis of the facility can take the change into account.

* National Burn Awareness Week, observed the first full week in Feb.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Hand Washing - Simple Enough - for Flu Season that is...

Here are some facts about hand washing from the Oregon Department of Health Services:

Hand washing is the single most important thing you can do to avoid the flu or to avoid spreading illness. Adequate hand washing requires soap & clean, running water. Warm water is preferable. Lather up & scrub for 20 seconds.

Why use soap? It mixes with skin oil and loosens grease and dirt that may hold germs. If not available, use an alcohol-based gel as a substitute. Plain soap is a better choice than antibacterial soaps.

Wash your hands often. The average person touches eyes, nose, and mouth at least 200 times a day.

The most important times to wash hands are before preparing or eating food, after going to the bathroom or diapering a baby, before and after caring for someone who is sick or bleeding, after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing, and after handling an animal, animal waste, or garbage.