Monthly Archives: October 2014
Well it's Halloween weekend and everyone will be having fun trick or treating, dressing up and partying. But remember that there are some very cruel people who will use this happy occasion as an excuse to torture and abuse animals. It happens every year and it is sad and disgusting.
The best way to ensure your cat (black or otherwise) as well as ANY other pets that traditional spend time outside are kept safe is to keep them inside as much as possible this weekend. You may get annoyed or even get some pet hair on your clothes but compared to the savage cruelty that could be inflicted upon them for no reason other than the day that they are outside is Halloween, it is worth it to keep them safe.
Your pets are always there for you. Be there for them this Halloween. And report any activity that looks suspicious. You just might save someone's bestest buddy.
JAMES WESLEY COPP
If you are in California, you need to follow Cal/OSHA standards.. but lucky you - you also need to follow Federal OSHA standards! Fortunately, (and understand that this is a "Glass half full" way of looking at it) in most cases Cal/OSHA standards mirror or exceed OSHA Standards.
But wait... there's more! If you are multi-State, you must comply with both Federal and Cal/OSHA, and you must comport with and local regulations. Don't worry... there's even more: If you are in Construction or Electrical, there are yet more standards, regulations and requirements to abide by. Finally, if you have Commercial Fleet Vehicles, or if you transport any goods (especially hazardous materials, but any at all) then you have DOT regulations and requirements as well.
Its not easy being green - or OSHA compliant!
How can a company know what they need to do to be compliant?
If you get inspected, it is your responsibility to know what you need and to already have all precautions, paperwork, training, etc. in place - "Ignorance of the law is no excuse."
Check out your options, get some good OSHA Safety Compliance materials (available in books, CDs, even update services) and get to work... once you figure out your minimum requirements, it's not so bad.
If in California, here are some considerations:
- Organization of Cal/OSHA versus federal OSHA;
- Differences in standards and California unique standards;
- Reduced Permissible Exposure Limits in California compared to Fed/OSHA;
- The California Injury and Illness Prevention Standard – the model for the future federal 12P2 Standard;
- How inspections are targeted;
- Differences in reporting occurrences of deaths or serious injuries;
- Differences in the definition of a serious violation – How Cal/OSHA serious violations are easier to prove, and just got easier with 2010 legislation;
- Differences in penalties between Fed/OSHA and Cal/OSHA;
- Difference between the Cal/OSHA and federal citation appeals process; and
- Felony criminal and other workplace accident liability and admissibility of Cal/OSHA standards in civil cases, which are issues rarely encountered in other jurisdictions.
OK - tortoises are actually the long, long living creatures, but here's some fun info on Turtle CPR... I Gave Mouth to Mouth to a Turtle:
We (Alabama Natural Heritage Program) are currently trapping Alabama Red-bellied Turtles (Pseudemys alabamensis), a federally-endangered species, in south Alabama, to estimate their population size. We occasionally capture other species as well, such as Florida Cooters (Pseudemys floridana). Earlier this summer (2014) we captured a Florida Cooter that had apparently drowned in the trap. I placed it on the bottom of the boat so we could later preserve it for a museum collection. After about 20 minutes I noticed one of its legs move. So, I started some modified mouth-to-mouth procedures and was pleased when the turtle became alert and took a breath. I repeated the procedure several times. We kept the turtle on the boat for an hour to let it recover before we decided it was ready to be released. Filmed by Olivia Sylvester.
Want more? Check out my blog www.LivingAlongsideWildlife.com and follow me on Twitter @AlongsideWild.
Giant tortoises are famously long-lived: The oldest ever known was Tu’i Malila of Tonga Island passed away at 188, while Adwaita in India was at least 150—possibly as old as 250—when he died in 2006. The Galápagos tortoise Harriet, known as “Darwin’s tortoise,” survived to around age 176. She passed away in 2006 at the Australia Zoo in Queensland.
Lifting and carrying. It's something we do all the time, and we normally don't think twice about it. But there are good reasons to consider how we lift and carry things, because there are right ways and wrong ways to do it. And what you don't know about them can hurt you. Back injuries can cause pain, lost productivity and lost wages ... but they don't have to happen if employees know how to lift and carry safely.
Safe Lifting enables you to ensure that employees can lift and carry safely. Think about:
- The physical basis for safe lifting practices.
- The types of hazards associated with common lifting tasks.
- The techniques to use to "lift and carry" safely.
- Guidance on when workers should ask for help with a lift, and when they should use equipment like dollies and hand-carts.
Safety is no laughing matter, but to raise awareness of this important topic, we thought you might appreciate this lighthearted quick quiz on proper lifting-- which is one of the key ways back injuries can be avoided.
Which of the following are proper lifting techniques?
A. Bending your back until you look like the hunchback of Notre Dame
B. Hunching over so your backside is more visible to co-workers
C. Avoiding the power zone in which objects are grasped close to the body
D. None of the above
Back injuries most likely affect YOUR employees and are costly to your company, with missed work days, less productivity and workman’s comp claims. Yet many back injuries can be avoided with employee training and awareness of proper lifting techniques.
For many employees, back injuries are something that "happens to the other person... not to me." Yet four out of five people will experience some type of back problems during their lives. And many back injuries are caused by common activities experienced both on and off the job... such as lifting, climbing, reaching, etc.
Our training products on "Back Safety" emphasize the importance of overall back care, both at work and at home, including exercises and weight control. Topics covered in these products include:
- How the back works.
- Common types and causes of back injuries.
- Effects of back injuries.
- Injury prevention and safety practices.
- Proper lifting techniques.
- and more.
Get a Quote for a Class:
Back Safety Live Instruction Training Courses at YOUR Location
You think Volcanoes aren't a threat in the US? Not only can we, indeed have domestic Volcano eruption emergencies (Mount Saint Helens, Hawaii...) but volcanic eruptions elsewhere can cause drastic weather changes stateside which can result in unexpected (and therefor un-prepared-for) severe weather.
In Alaska, StormCenter is working with the Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC) in Anchorage to establish its technology as a core collaboration, coordination and data sharing technology for the protection of the nation's airspace. In a recent meeting in June 2012, the International Volcanic Ash Task Force (IVATF) recommended that StormCenter's technology for real-time data sharing and collaboration be adopted for further evaluation to become the global technology for volcanic ash collaborative decision support.
Impacts from volcanic eruptions can be significant. There were several severe impacts from a series of eruptions from Mount Redoubt in March-April 2009 as described in the official NWS assessment and included partially here. Two major lahars (mudflows) moved down the Drift River and partially inundated an oil terminal. Airborne ash clouds posed a hazard to aviation and caused multiple flight cancellations and reroutes. Alaska Airlines cancelled approximately 200 flights. FedEx, United Parcel Service and several other cargo airlines rerouted aircraft to Seattle. Ash fall forced Ted Stevens International Airport in Anchorage to close for 20 consecutive hours. Disruption to the aviation industry was significant for passenger travel and cargo transportation between Asia and North America. Minor ash fall impacted several communities as far downwind as Delta Junction, Alaska, 400 miles northeast of Anchorage. Elmendorf Air Force Base assets were temporarily relocated. There were also impacts to oil field operations due to the cessation of oil storage at Chevron's Drift River Oil Terminal. Cost figures for the total economic impact of this event were not available at the time of this report. However, the economic impact is estimated to be less than or equal to the cost of the impact from the 1989-1990 Mount Redoubt event (estimated at $160 million).
A joint NOAA/NASA satellite is one of several satellites providing valuable information to aviators about volcanic hazards. An aviation "orange" alert was posted on August 18, 2014, for Bárðarbunga, a stratovolcano located under the Vatnajökull glacier in Iceland, indicating the “volcano shows heightened or escalating unrest with increased potential of eruption.”
Much of the information leading to that alert came from satellites including Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) instrument on board the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)/NASA Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (Suomi NPP).
NOAA’s polar satellites are critical for a variety of “nowcasting” capabilities in addition to volcanic ash including imagery to monitor storms, fog, sea ice, and other dangerous weather and environmental conditions as well as providing data for more accurate weather forecasting to secure a more 'Weather-Ready Nation' thereby saving lives and protecting property.
- Know your Hazards: The First Step in Preparedness
- Bizarre Weather
- Glossary of Preparedness Terms – Our Lexicon of Prepper, Government and Survivalist Terminology, Slang and Phrases
- Preparedness for all Calamities – Stay Strong and Survive!
Could there really be a volcano season?
The Earth seems to have been smoking a lot recently. Volcanoes are currently erupting in Iceland, Hawaii, Indonesia and Mexico. Others, in the Philippines and Papua New Guinea, erupted recently but seem to have calmed down. And then there was the fatal eruption in Japan. Many of these have threatened homes and forced evacuations. But among their less-endangered spectators, these eruptions may have raised a question: Is there such a thing as a season for volcanic eruptions?
Surprisingly, this may be a possibility. While volcano “seasons” aren't anything like the four we're familiar with, scientists have started to discern intriguing patterns in their activity.
Eruptions caused by a shortened day
The four seasons are caused by the Earth’s axis of rotation tilting towards and away from the Sun. But our planet undergoes another, less well-known change, one that affects it in a more subtle way—perhaps even volcanically.
Mount St. Helens
Mount St. Helens is an active stratovolcano located in Skamania County, Washington, in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. It is 96 miles south of Seattle, Washington, and 50 miles northeast of Portland, Oregon. Wikipedia
Last eruption: July 10, 2008
In May 1980, the world gasped at the eruption of Mount St. Helens, which was one of the largest volcano eruptions in America in the past half-century. The May 18, 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens had a significant impact on the weather and the surrounding landscape of the region for years. Most of us have only seen images from the ground, but now you can see what the incredible eruption looked like from space.
This spectacular imagery comes from the GOES-1 weather satellite and gives us views that show the real effects volcanos have. It shows Mount St. Helens eruption spreading to the north into eastern Washington, Idaho and Montana.
The first GOES-1 weather satellite GIF loop shows the eruption through visible light.
The second GOES-1 weather satellite GIF loop shows the eruption in infrared.
As you can see, an eruption of this scale will spread pretty quickly throughout the surrounding states.
Here are some specifics of the Mount St. Helens eruption thanks to The News Tribune: “A 5.1-magnitude earthquake a mile beneath the summit triggers the largest landslide in recorded history, followed by a lateral blast and mudflow that leveled 230 square miles of forest, killed 57 people and caused billions of dollars in property damage. An ash plume reached 80,000 feet in less than 10 minutes and the ash fallout covered 22,000 square miles.”
Due to factors like the gravitational pull of the Sun and Moon, the speed at which the Earth rotates constantly changes. Accordingly the length of a day actually varies from year to year. The difference is only in the order of milliseconds, but new research suggests that this seemingly small perturbation could bring about significant changes on our planet—or more accurately, within it.
In February 2014, a study in the journal Terra Nova showed that, since the early 19th century, changes in the Earth’s rotation rate tended to be followed by increases in global volcanic activity. It found that, between 1830 and 2013, the longest period for which a reliable record was available, relatively large changes in rotation rate were immediately followed by an increase in the number of large volcanic eruptions. And, more than merely being correlated, the authors believe that the rotation changes might actually have triggered these large eruptions.
Altering the spin of a planet, even by a small amount, requires a huge amount of energy. It has been estimated that changes in the Earth’s rotation rate dissipate around 120,000 petajoules of energy each year—enough to power the United States for the same length of time. This energy is transferred into the Earth’s atmosphere and subsurface. And it is this second consequence that the Terra Nova authors believe could affect volcanoes.
The vast quantities of energy delivered to the subsurface by rotation changes are likely to perturb its stress field. And, since the magma that feeds volcanic eruptions resides in the Earth’s crust, stress variations there may make it easier for the liquid rock to rise to the surface, and thereby increase the rate of volcanic eruptions.
The Terra Nova study is far from conclusive. Nevertheless, the idea that minute changes to the Earth’s spin could affect volcanic motions deep within the planet is an intriguing one.
But there’s another natural phenomenon which has a much stronger claim to affect volcanic activity—one which might be just as surprising: climate change.
Eruptions caused by climate change
In recent decades, it has become apparent that the consequences of planetary ice loss might not end with rising sea levels. Evidence has been building that in the past, periods of severe loss of glaciers were followed by a significant spike in volcanic activity.
Around 19,000 years ago, glaciation was at a peak, and much of Europe and North America was under ice. Then the climate warmed, and the glaciers began to recede. The effect on the planet was generally quite favourable for humankind. But, since the mid-1970s, a number of studies have suggested that, as the ice vanished, volcanic eruptions became much more frequent. A 2009 study, for example, concluded that between 12,000 and 7,000 years ago, the global level of volcanic activity rose by up to six times. During roughly the same period the rate of volcanic activity in Iceland soared to at least 30 times today’s level.
There is supporting evidence from continental Europe, North America and Antarctica that volcanic activity also increased after earlier deglaciation cycles. Bizarrely, then, volcanic activity seems—at least sometimes—to rise and fall with ice levels. But why? Again, this strange effect might be down to stress.
Eruptions cause by the melting of ice
Ice sheets are heavy.They are so heavy, in fact, that as they grow, they cause the Earth’s crust to bend, much like a plank of wood does when placed under weight. The corollary of this is that, when an ice sheet melts and its mass is removed, the crust springs back. This upward flexing can lead to a drop in stress in the underlying rocks, which, the idea goes, makes it easier for magma to reach the surface and feed volcanic eruptions.
The link between climate change and volcanism is still poorly understood. Many volcanoes do not seem to have been affected by it. Nor is it a particularly pressing concern today, even though we face a future of vanishing ice. It can take thousands of years after the glaciers melt for volcanic activity to rise.
Yet while it may not be an immediate hazard, this strange effect is a reminder that our planet can respond to change in unforeseen ways. Contrary to their brutish reputation, volcanoes are helping scientists understand just how sensitive our planet can be.
This article was originally published on The Conversation.
We've talked a lot about Chemical Safety, but did you know that fewer than 500 chemicals out of the tens of thousands used in industry are covered under the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's Permissible Exposure Limits?
In a press teleconference on Oct. 9, Dr. David Michaels, assistant secretary of labor for occupational safety and health, announced that OSHA is initiating a national dialogue with stakeholders to develop ways to prevent work-related illness caused by exposure to hazardous substances. "Many of our chemical exposure standards are dangerously out of date and do not adequately protect workers," said Dr. Michaels. "While we will continue to work on updating our workplace exposure limits, we are asking public health experts, chemical manufacturers, employers, unions and others committed to preventing workplace illnesses to help us identify new approaches to address chemical hazards."
- When a Mess Is Actually a Biohazard
- Guide to HAZWOPER Standards
- Safety with Cleaning Chemicals: Storing and Handling
- Read the OSHA News Release
- Learn More About Permissible Exposure Limits
- Read the RFI
Learn about Chemical Hazards:
Handling Hazardous Materials Hazardous Materials Labels Hazardous Spills HAZMAT
FALLS ARE THE LEADING CAUSE OF DEATH IN CONSTRUCTION.
OSHA launched a nationwide outreach campaign to raise awareness among workers and employers about the hazards of falls from ladders, scaffolds and roofs. Their educational resources page gives workers and employers information about falls and how to prevent them. There are also training tools for employers to use and posters to display at their worksites. Many of the new resources target vulnerable workers with limited English proficiency.
Join in this effort by helping to reach workers and employers in your community with the resources you find on this site:
- Avoid the Top 10 OSHA Violations
- Construction Safety Checklist
- Top 10 Construction Site Accidents and How to Prevent Them
- Construction Safety Risk and Prevention
OSHA will continue to add information and tools throughout the year.
OSHA has partnered with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health and National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA) - Construction Sector on this nationwide outreach campaign to raise awareness among workers and employers about common fall hazards in construction, and how falls from ladders, scaffolds and roofs can be prevented and lives can be saved. Here's how:
PLAN ahead to get the job done safely
When working from heights, such as ladders, scaffolds, and roofs, employers must plan projects to ensure that the job is done safely. Begin by deciding how the job will be done, what tasks will be involved, and what safety equipment may be needed to complete each task.
When estimating the cost of a job, employers should include safety equipment, and plan to have all the necessary equipment and tools available at the construction site. For example, in a roofing job, think about all of the different fall hazards, such as holes or skylights and leading edges, then plan and select fall protection suitable to that work, such as personal fall arrest systems (PFAS).
PROVIDE the right equipment
Workers who are six feet or more above lower levels are at risk for serious injury or death if they should fall. To protect these workers, employers must provide fall protection and the right equipment for the job, including the right kinds of ladders, scaffolds, and safety gear.
Different ladders and scaffolds are appropriate for different jobs. Always provide workers with the kind they need to get the job done safely. For roof work, there are many ways to prevent falls. If workers use personal fall arrest systems (PFAS), provide a harness for each worker who needs to tie off to the anchor. Make sure the PFAS fits, and regularly inspect all fall protection equipment to ensure it's still in good condition and safe to use.
TRAIN everyone to use the equipment safely
Falls can be prevented when workers understand proper set-up and safe use of equipment, so they need training on the specific equipment they will use to complete the job. Employers must train workers in hazard recognition and in the care and safe use ladders, scaffolds, fall protection systems, and other equipment they'll be using on the job.
OSHA has provided numerous materials and resources that employers can use during toolbox talks to train workers on safe practices to avoid falls in construction. Falls from ladders, scaffolds and roofs can be prevented and lives can be saved through three simple steps: Plan, Provide and Train.
NIH discharge of Ebola patient from its Clinical Center Special Clinical Studies Unit
NIH officials briefed reporters Today, in front of the NIH Clinical Center, about the discharge of Nina Pham, the Dallas nurse who was admitted to the NIH Clinical Center on October 16 with Ebola virus disease, and is now virus free.
NIH informed viewers that there was no risk of Ms. Pham spreading the infection to others. Only infected persons currently exhibiting Ebola Symptoms are infectious. They stated unequivocally that she is cured of Ebola.
They reminded all that States, not just the CDC have a say in release guidelines as well as containment.
NIH administered no experimental Drugs to Nina Pham, she recovered through normal symptomatic care and personal strength. She did have a plasma transfusion, but there is no way of singling out any single factor that particularly contributed to her recovery.
Representatives stated that they like to think of the National Institutes of Health as the "National Institutes of HOPE".
The patient is free of Ebola Virus, determined through multiple examinations and tests.
They called Nurse Pham, Extraordinary, Lovely, and Courageous. They further recognized the remarkable work of the Doctors and Nurses at Texas Presbyterian Hospital before transfer to NIH, and at NIH.
Nurse Nina Pham will now return to Texas to resume her life, and has asked that everyone respect her need for privacy and time with her family while regaining her strength. NIH reminded all that States, not just the CDC have a say in release guidelines as well as containment.
NIH refused to disclose Ms. Pham's travel arrangements to avoid Media disrespect for her privacy.
Remember that Ebola is NOT Airborne.
Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D., Director of the National Institutes of Health
Anthony S. Fauci, M.D., Ph.D., Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
H. Clifford (Cliff) Lane, M.D., NIAID Clinical Director
John I. Gallin, M.D., Director, NIH Clinical Center
Tara Palmore, M.D., Director, Hospital Epidemiologist, NIH Clinical Center and Director, Infectious Diseases Training Program, NIAID
Rick Davey, M.D., Deputy Clinical Director, NIAID Division of Clinical Research
About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation's medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov. NIH...Turning Discovery Into Health®
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