Monday, August 16, 2010

OSHA to Identify Hazardous Chemicals Most in Need of Agency Action

 In an effort to reduce hazardous material related injury and illness, OSHA has announced that it will seek input to help identify which chemicals to target for exposure reduction strategies.  This will help regulate acceptable exposure limits on dangerous chemicals.  Please read the official OSHA press release below.

WASHINGTON - OSHA today announced that it will host a Web Forum, August 16, 2010, to seek stakeholder input in identifying hazardous chemicals for which OSHA should develop exposure reduction strategies.

Workers exposed to chemicals suffer injuries and illnesses that can damage virtually all body parts and systems, including the lungs, skin, liver, kidneys, eyes, and mucous membranes. The Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates that workers suffered more than 55,000 illnesses related to chemical exposures in 2007 and nearly 17,500 chemical-related injuries and illnesses resulted in workers spending days away from work. This is likely an underestimate because often the effects of chemical exposures are frequently not recognized until years after exposure. As a result, work-related disease often goes unreported since a worker or physician may not attribute the effect to an exposure that occurred on the job many years before.

During its first two years of existence, OSHA established approximately 400 permissible exposure limits (PELs) for hazardous chemicals based on then-existing national consensus or federal standards. Since then, OSHA has been able to develop more protective regulations for only 29 chemicals, while the majority of OSHA PELs have remained unchanged.

"Many of our permissible exposure limits are based on 1950s-era science that we now realize is inadequate to protect workers in 21st century workplaces," said Assistant Secretary of Labor for OSHA David Michaels. "We must assure the protection of workers currently exposed to well-recognized chemical hazards for which we have an inadequate PEL or no PEL at all. I am hopeful that this forum will assist us in achieving that goal by helping us to identify those chemicals on which we should be focusing our efforts."

HAZWOPER Training is available online and on-site through Easy Safety School.

The forum will allow stakeholders to identify harmful chemicals and explain why OSHA should focus on these chemicals in developing long- and short-term solutions for reducing workers' exposure. Interested parties can complete a nomination form at Nominations will be accepted from August 16 until August 27.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to assure these conditions for America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit

DOL Gives $27 Million towards Training and Placement for Oil Spill Victims.

the Department of Labor has generously donated $27,000,000.00 to workers who have been displaced by the gulf oil spill.  This grant helps workers in Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, and Mississippi to get proper job training and placement.  This money will go a long way to help those who are waiting to be reimbursed by BP.   We have attached the official OSHA release below.

WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Labor has announced a total of $27 million in National Emergency Grant awards to four key states to assist workers along the Gulf Coast who have been displaced as a result of the ongoing Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The states are Alabama, Florida, Louisiana and Mississippi.

"Working families in the Gulf Coast have been dealt a tremendous blow by this oil spill, and they are facing serious long-term challenges. They need and deserve our help now," said U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. "From the start, we have been actively engaged in ensuring workers tackling the cleanup are kept safe and healthy. These grants will help those still looking for work find jobs that are good, safe and will help the region's economy get back on track."

The funds are being granted to workforce agencies in the four states experiencing economic hardship as a result of wage decline and job loss in the shrimping, fishing, hospitality and tourism industries. Alabama and Mississippi each will receive $5 million. Florida will receive $7 million, and Louisiana will receive $10 million.

The resources are being provided to the states to increase their capacity to help workers now while they seek reimbursement from BP for the costs associated with retraining and re-employment assistance. Services funded by the grant money may include skills assessment, basic skills training, individual career counseling and occupational skills training.

Gulf Spill HAZWOPER Training is available online or on-site.

Since April, the Labor Department has been involved in the Deepwater Horizon response. The department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration is deployed across the Gulf Coast monitoring the cleanup and ensuring BP provides appropriate worker safety and health training and protections. Learn more at

The department's Employment and Training Administration has created One-Stop Career Centers where workers can receive information on unemployment insurance and job opportunities posted through the public workforce system. Learn more by calling 877-US2-JOBS (872-5627), 877-872-5627 or 877-889-5627 TTY, or visiting

Additionally, the department's Wage and Hour Division has been on the ground consulting with multiple agencies and interested parties, and providing materials to ensure cleanup workers are paid the wages they deserve.

National Emergency Grants are part of the secretary of labor's discretionary fund and are awarded based on a state's ability to meet specific guidelines. For more information, visit

Are oil spill workers receiving proper training?

Many volunteers who have trained to work with the Gulf Spill clean up efforts are finding that their training is not up to scruff.  Be warned, if your training is less than 40 hours or involves no hands on training, you may be ineligible for oil spill clean-up work.  Please see the official OSHA statement below.

WASHINGTON - U.S. Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Dr. David Michaels today issued the following statement regarding training for Gulf Coast oil spill clean-up:

"Employees hired to be supervisors in the onshore and marine cleanup are required to receive extensive training. A rigorous 40-hour program is required under OSHA's Hazardous Waste Operation and Emergency Response Standard.   

 HAZWOPER 40 Hour Training is available online, but requires additional hands on training.

"In order to meet the certifications of this 40-hour training, a combination of classroom and hands-on, applicable experience is required. This includes instruction on the makeup and risks associated with the hazardous material(s) involved, and experience with the equipment needed for the work, safety gear and local environment.

"We have received reports that some are offering this training in significantly less than 40 hours, showing video presentations and offering only limited instruction. This training cannot be shortened to anything less than 40 hours. Moreover, computer-based training, which could be offered over the Internet, can be used as part of an overall 40-hour HAZWOPER training course. However, such training alone does not meet the full course requirements.

"OSHA also recommends that the trainer-to-student ratio for this type of training be one trainer for every 30 students in the class.

 Hands on, on-site HAZWOPER 40 Hour Training is available in most areas.

"If a worker feels the training he or she received by a private company or organization does not meet the HAZWOPER training requirements, he or she may contact the closest OSHA area office to file a complaint or call 800-321-OSHA (6742) for more information."

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Open Enrollment for RRP Lead Paint Certified Renovator Training in Portland, Maine

Easy Safety School is proud to annouce that we and our partner trainer Steve St. Laurent will be hosting open enrollment RRP Lead Based paint certification courses in Portland, ME on Thursday September 2nd and Friday, September 10th.  We are offering these courses under the the EPA-approved providership of NCHH (National Center for Healthy Housing).  The cost for enrollment is $279.00 per student.  Sign up ASAP because available seats are filling up fast.  To sign up please email us at or visit our RRP Lead Paint Certified Renovator Training page.

Class 1:
Certified Renovator Course in English.
Thurs. 9/2/10.
8am - 5pm
Steven J. St. Laurent = Principal Instructor (Cell: 978-549-8224)
First Assembly of God Church
243 Cumberland Ave.
Portland, ME 04101
Instructor's Cell: 978-549-8224

Class 2
Certified Renovator Course in English.
Fri. 9/10/10
8am - 5pm
Steven J. St. Laurent = Principal Instructor (Cell: 978-549-8224)
First Assembly of God Church
243 Cumberland Ave.
Portland, ME 04101
Instructor's Cell: 978-549-8224