Martin Technical, Inc., a leading subject matter expert in providing industrial plants and facilities with simplified safety solutions and consulting services, will be exhibiting at the ASSP Safety 2022 Conference June 27-29, 2022, in Chicago, IL. Industry experts will be present to educate facility professionals on how Martin Technical can make hazardous situations safer by applying solutions for training, electrical maintenance, inspections, lockout tagout, confined space, and OSHA services.
Martin Technical will be highlighting the latest, most comprehensive, and practical safety training offerings including blended learning training, virtual reality training, and strategies to guide organizations in building the most robust training program.
The month of June is National Safety Month, an event focused on bringing awareness to safety concerns in the workplace. Martin Technical, a member of the National Safety Council, wants to recognize National Safety Month and its significance. With such a high fatality rate in 2020 in the United States, with 4,764 fatal work injuries recorded (a 10.7% decrease from 5,333 in 2019), it is important to draw attention to this national topic. While this number is decreasing, National Safety Month is an event tailored around the continuation of the fatal work injury rate.
Top OSHA Safety Concerns
The list of top 10 most frequently cited standards following inspections of worksites by federal OSHA for all industries is released publicly every year to attract attention to safety concerns in the workplace that are often overlooked. With better knowledge and understanding of safety hazards that are often missed, companies can better prepare their workplace.
Additional to their top safety citations OSHA has also released information on their “Fatal Four” leading causes of fatalities in the workplace.
Falls- 36% of workplace fatalities
Struck by Objects- 10% of workplace fatalities
Electrocutions- 9% of workplace fatalities
Caught in Between- 2% of workplace fatalities
How can you address Safety Concerns?
With proper safety training in place the risk of workplace fatalities decreases. All industries should focus on building and maintaining robust training programs for fall protection, lockout tagout, machine guarding, and arc flash, which help to provide education on the fatal four in the workplace. Martin Technical, a leading safety solutions company providing services and implementation solutions, has in-house subject matter experts whose mission is to help companies build their own customized and efficient training programs. Working with industry experts can boost your safety program, build or strengthen safety cultures, and combat the fatal four workplace concerns.
The Importance of National Safety Month
National Safety Month is a national movement with the goal of bringing awareness to safety in the workplace, ensuring every individual makes it home safe after each day, to enjoy the best part of their day. Join the cause and continue to help spread awareness today.
Martin Technical would like to welcome Wayne Branom to the sales team as our Regional Manager for the Great Lakes & Northeast Region. Wayne has spent over 35 years in the safety vertical, with Orr Safety/NSI as a Senior Account Manager for the Central Region. He resides in Aurora, Illinois with his family.
“Wayne is a well-respected performer and subject matter expert in industrial safety and will provide a level of expertise we are blessed to have on our team.” states Gil Truesdale CRO of Martin Technical.
Wayne will manage the Great Lakes and Northeast Region’s driving opportunities for electrical safety, lockout tagout, safety compliance training, and safety management software solutions through Safety Hive.
To contact Wayne Branom, please email WayneB@MarTechnical.com or call +1 (630) 991-0170.
About Martin Technical / Safety Hive
Martin Technical is a leading safety solutions company providing services and implementation solutions for Lockout Tagout, Electrical Safety, Electrical Engineering, Audits & Inspections, Training, OSHA Services, and consulting. Safety Hive, a safety software and technology provider, digitizes and automates safety to predict and prevent workplace safety incidents by empowering the workforce through technology.
Martin Technical Inspires Pulp & Paper Safety Association with Digital Solutions
BROOMFIELD, CO – May 31,2022
Martin Technical, Inc., a leading subject matter expert in providing industrial plants and facilities with simplified safety solutions and consulting services, will participate as a member exhibitor at the 2022 PPSA conference in Ponte Vedra, FL June 12-15th. Martin Technical located, in Broomfield, Colorado, will showcase the highly sought-after digital workplace safety solutions with software provider Safety Hive, to empower facility management professionals, and their employees, to stay at the forefront of an evolving and challenging world using technology.
As the workforce becomes increasingly distributed and mobile, Safety Hive equips workers with quick access to workplace safety services, educates them on their tasks, and reduces errors, incidents, inspection and audit times, and overall facility downtime. Martin Technical subject matter experts along with Safety Hive’s software solutions will now be able to offer their clients a full circle, turnkey solution all under one roof enhancing their mission of making the complex simple. This will enable facilities to improve their safety culture, operational efficiency, facility management forecasting, and help motivate workers to make their workplace safer and more productive.
“Innovation is at the core of the success of Martin Technical and Safety Hive and has been the driving force for our successes over the past 20 years. Consistently pushing the limits of what we do, how we do it and what we can do to help support our customers in their day-to-day world to keep workers safe and institutions in compliance. Safety Hive is the next big thing from Martin Technical and it is set to “change the game” on how data, compliance, process, procedure and most importantly, worker safety, come together in a single platform. This will become the Standard for Safety Management Systems in the US and around the world.” says Chief Operating Officer, Donny Snyder.
Martin Technical and Safety Hive will be located at booth #40 and is inviting all workplace safety professionals to stop by and learn more about the most innovative services in the industry.
Register at: https://ppsaconference.org/
About Martin Technical
Martin Technical is a leading provider of practical safety and efficiency services that make industrial plants and facilities better, safer, and more efficient. Our experts can help simplify the complex by applying real-world solutions for lockout tagout, arc flash, electrical safety, risk assessments, OSHA services, training, machine safety, and safety consulting.
About Safety Hive
Safety Hive is a Safety Technology Solution and Software Provider that digitizes and automates safety to predict and prevent workplace safety incidents through technology and data.
WOLF CREEK, MT – The U.S. Department of Labor’s OSHA has certified NorthWestern Energy’s Holter Hydroelectric Plant in Wolf Creek as a “Star” under the VPP. This is the highest level of recognition for workplace safety and health excellence under the agency’s Voluntary Protection Program. OSHA has approved Holter Hydroelectric Plant as a VPP program participant since June 2008. In total, NorthWestern Energy has four sites participating in VPP nationwide.
OSHA announced the recognition as part of Holter Hydroelectric’s recertification in the VPP program, which is now in its 40th year. The “Star” designation recognizes employers and employees who demonstrate exemplary achievement in the prevention and control of workplace safety and health hazards, as well as the development, implementation, and continuous improvement of their safety and health management systems.
“NorthWestern Energy continues to exhibit a significant commitment to employee safety and health performance,” said OSHA Regional Administrator Jennifer Rous. She quoted this as a great example of safety accomplishments with the teamwork of OSHA, employers, employees, and their union.
The Safety Culture and Good Practices
OSHA praised Holter Dam’s proactive approaches to safety and health, including daily meetings on potential workplace hazards and safety controls.
Other good practices are regular community outreach by employees supporting their emergency preparedness plans. The outreach includes annual tabletop and rotating mock drills at Holter and neighboring dams. It brings together emergency responders, state road and bridge authorities, news media, the National Weather Service, and other stakeholders.
“We conduct annual outreach to 100 people ensuring the readiness in the event of a major worker or public safety threatening issues. Regular exercise programs are conducted with partners, the nearby dams, responders, and major players,” said NorthWestern Energy Operations and Maintenance Superintendent Jeremy Butcher.
In addition, employees at Holter Dam are regularly trained and equipped to perform lifesaving first aid. Last but not least, the company also ensures law enforcement, fire departments, and contractors are familiar with the access points to expedite emergency responses.
In summary, having a positive safety culture within an organization promotes more than safety. It is vital for a successful and effective health and safety program. According to OSHA, developing a strong safety culture has a significant impact on accident reduction of any process. Learn more about building and maintaining a positive safety culture and formulating robust safety training solutions with industry subject matter experts.
OSHA’s Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP)
The VPP recognizes employers and workers in the private industry and federal agencies implementing effective safety and health management systems. In addition to maintaining injury and illness rates below national Bureau of Labor Statistics averages for their respective industries. In VPP, management, labor, and OSHA work cooperatively and proactively to prevent fatalities, injuries, and illnesses. These are achieved through a system focused on hazard prevention and control, worksite analysis, training, management commitment, and worker involvement.
Safety culture is the way safety is perceived, valued, prioritized, and integrated into all activities in the workplace. Rather than referring to the company’s safety policy and program, it is a set of core values and behaviors that prioritize safety. Safety culture encapsulates the mindsets, attitudes, and behaviors of workers, supervisors, managers, and owners toward safety in the workplace.
Benefits of building a Positive Safety Culture
Having a positive safety culture within an organization promotes more than safety. It is vital for a successful and effective health and safety program. According to OSHA, developing a strong safety culture has a significant impact on the accident reduction of any process.
Additionally, a positive safety culture helps strengthen worker confidence and retention, organizational behavior, and even productivity.
Core Elements of Building a Positive Safety Culture
While qualities may differ from organization to organization, companies with a strong safety culture share several characteristics, including:
Management Leadership – Senior leaders demonstrate their commitment to continuous safety and health improvement, communicate that commitment to workers, and set program expectations and responsibilities. Managers shall make safety and health a core organizational value, establish safety and health goals and objectives, provide adequate resources and support for the program, and set a good example. Often, a shift in safety culture is unsuccessful because there is without top-down support. The change is temporary and ends by slipping back into old patterns, or there is no change.
Worker Participationand Ownership – Workers are committed to continuously identifying safety hazards and improving the work environment for the better. Once the employees understand safety standards, they can help with establishing, operating, evaluating, and improving the safety and health program. Team participation can be taken a step further by improving safety dialogue between workers and management and showing workers how to help keep each other safe. Organizations should empower employees to improve safety in their work area and throughout the facility.
Hazard Identification, Assessment, Prevention, and Control – Involve workers who often have the best understanding of the conditions that create hazards and insights into how to control them. Identify and evaluate options for preventing and controlling hazards, and develop plans to protect workers during emergencies. After assessing existing hazards, exposures, and control measures, periodic inspections and reassessments shall follow to identify the root causes and new hazards. A plan should also be developed to ensure that controls are implemented, interim protection is provided, progress is tracked, and the effectiveness of controls is verified. Martin Technical encourages organizations to develop a robust workplace safety strategy by scheduling regular hazard assessments includinghazards of arc flash, lockout tagout, and electrical safety.
Safety Procedures and Equipment – Inspect the workplace with workers and ask them to identify any activity, piece of equipment, or material that concerns them. Other good practices include posting signs around the facility indicating different safety procedures, regular communication on safety tips, and announcements on new safety procedures.
Education and Training – Providing ample opportunities for employees to access safety resources, including signage, safety stickers, regular safety meetings, and safety training, is essential in creating a safe work environment. All workers should be trained to recognize workplace hazards and understand the control measures implemented.
Consider developing training programs with the help of industry subject matter experts that offer blended and interactive training solutions. Ideally, a comprehensive training program should include a good mix of on-site training, hands-on validation, online learning, webinars, toolbox talks, and virtual reality coursesin multiple languages for easy access.
Maintaining the Safety Culture by Continuous Evaluation and Improvement
Creating a positive workplace safety culture goes a long way towards changing the mindset, and the actions, of both workers and management. Often, organizations recognize the need to change the workplace safety culture in response to a culture that’s become complacent. The effects of complacency can be catastrophic in causing accidents, injuries, illnesses, costly fines, and even loss of life.
Continuous processes shall be established to monitor safety program performance, verify program implementation, and identify the shortcomings and opportunities for improvement.
A positive safety culture will be easier to build and maintain when employees feel comfortable reporting concerns and believe that the reporting process is positive. Keeping team members motivated and updated about the improvement is essential to maintaining a positive safety culture. Recognizing individuals and departments for improvements can effectively keep team members excited and invested in building a positive safety culture.
Warehousing is one of the riskier industries due to high-powered machinery and vehicles operating within proximity of each other. Rapid growth in e-commerce is driving an ever-increasing demand for the delivery of products in shorter timeframes. Industrial and commercial warehouses are to keep up with this demand while complying with the current safety expectations. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reports thousands of injuries, illnesses, and deaths in the warehousing industry annually. Many of those are caused by workplace accidentssuch as slips or falls, hazardous materials, and equipment malfunction. Warehouse safety should be the employers’ utmost priority to keep employees safe, ensure efficient operation, maximize productivity, and minimize injury or damage. Below are some factors to consider when planning a safe work environment for warehouse employees.
Building a Safety Culture and Procedures
Establishing comprehensive safety procedures can help prevent workplace accidents in warehouses and promote a safe work environment. An engaging safety procedure starts from the top-down; management should walk the talk in cultivating such values into the company culture. While employees may have the required certification for the job, this does not always include in-depth safety training. Thus, providing ample opportunities for employees to access safety resources, including signage, safety stickers, regular safety meetings, and safety training, is essential in creating a safe work environment. Consider developing training programs with the help of industry subject matter experts that offer blended and interactive training solutions. Ideally, a comprehensive training program should include a good mix of on-site training, hands-on validation, online learning, webinars, toolbox talks, andvirtual reality courses in multiple languages for easy access.
Other good practices include posting signs around the warehouse indicating different safety procedures, regular communication on safety tips, and announcements on new safety procedures. Incentivize workers to take safety courses and recognize their efforts to demonstrate exemplary safety protocol. Consider putting together a safety handbook or manual that includes potential hazards, safety protocols, and rules.
Establishing a complete and comprehensive Lockout Tagout program that includes clear and precise lockout procedures for all workers is imperative, especially in heavy machinery warehouses. Routine training on using the equipment, shutting it down correctly, and isolating the power sources by following the proper lockout tagout procedures can prevent accidents and avoid fines, ensuring the highest level of safety in your warehouse.
Warehouse workers are more likely to internalize the safety culture and take it seriously when they know the company is responsible, accountable, and invested in their well-being. A safe work environment helps warehouses build a good relationship with their employees and supports businesses in achieving higher recognition.
Fort Worth, Texas – The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently cited two contractors for fall hazards and is seeking six-figure penalties. On Sept. 17, OSHA cited RM Masonry and Stucco Inc. of Fort Worth for exposing workers to fall and silica hazards, a total of nine repeated and six serious violations. The offenses included failing to ensure scaffolding was planked correctly and secured, providing a ladder for safe egress, and inspecting scaffolding. Later, on Sept. 20, the agency cited Neal Weaver, an Ohio-based contractor, with severe eye and fall protection violations. The company has exposed its workers to deadly fall hazards for the sixth time in five years. OSHA is seeking fines totaling $216,265 and $253,556, respectively.
“Fall hazards make roofing work among the most dangerous jobs in construction,” Cleveland Area Director Howard Eberts said in a recent statement. “Employers must ensure that employees working from heights greater than 6 feet are provided with fall protection equipment and are well trained. Too often, OSHA inspectors find employees working on residential roofs without fall protection,” Eberts continued. OSHA’s construction industry fall protection standard (29 CFR §1926.501) is the agency’s most frequently cited standard, a total of 5,424 times in the fiscal year (FY) 2020. At the same time, the scaffolding standard (§1926.451) is the fourth most commonly cited standard with a total of 2,538 violations in FY 2020.
Fall Protection is OSHA’s Most Frequently Cited Standard for the 11th Consecutive Year
In fact, for the 11th consecutive fiscal year, Fall Protection – General Requirements is OSHA’s most frequently cited standard. Patrick Kapust, deputy director of OSHA’s Directorate of Enforcement Programs, presented this preliminary data from FY 2021 (Oct. 1, 2020, to Sept. 30) on Oct. 12 during the 2021 NSC Safety Congress & Expo. Although several standards swapped positions, the criteria that make up the Top 10 Violations remained unchanged from FY 2020. The complete list is as below:-
Fall Protection – General Requirements (1926.501): 5,295 violations
Ravenna, OH – Occupational Safety and Health Agency (OSHA) imposed a $1.6 million fine for a vehicle parts manufacturer’s 38 safety and health violations. The company was cited with four repeats, 18 willful, and 16 serious safety and health violations, following an investigation into the death of a 43-year-old worker on March 30. The tragedy happened when the barrier door closed on his head when loading a part into a machine.
OSHA alleged that General Aluminum allowed employees to bypass guarding mechanisms designed to prevent the barrier door from closing on them. A malfunction in the door’s optic control also existed before the deadly incident. The OSHA investigators also found a lack of Lockout / Tagout and effective safety management procedures throughout the vehicle parts maker’s facility, in addition to failure to protect employees from burn and explosion hazards.
General Aluminum Mfg was placed in OSHA’s Severe Violator Enforcement Program (SVEP) and is subject to mandatory follow-up inspections and increased agency pressure to abate cited hazards. Willful violations will be cited when an employer knowingly disregarded safety and health law and regulation or acted indifferently for employee safety and health. “OSHA will continue to hold bad actors accountable and emphasize the importance of complying with safety and health requirements that can save lives,” Acting Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Jim Frederick said in an agency statement.
Risk can be found in any workplace; it’s essential to avoid becoming complacent with health and safety procedures. Workplace health and safety training can positively influence an organization’s efficiency and productivity, reducing costs and saving lives. A robust health and safety policy cultivates a safe company culture. It helps organizations build a good relationship with their employees, supports businesses to achieve high recognition and good standing in their industry.