HSE and Lord Young test the waters of reform

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The head of the UK’s Health & Safety Executive, Judith Hackitt has released part of a letter that she sent to Lord Young of Graffham on the announcement of his OHS review.  According to Hackitt’s media statement she advised

“The terms of reference of your review extend beyond HSE’s remit, which is concerned with addressing real risks and preventing death, injury and ill health to those at work and those affected by work related activities.

“However, we in HSE have been saying for some time that health and safety is being used by too many as a convenient excuse to hide behind.”

Hackitt welcomed the review and has released Lord Young’s response in which he says:

“Thank you for your letter of 14 June confirming your commitment to the review commissioned by the Prime Minister into Health and Safety and the growth of the compensation culture.   Continue reading “HSE and Lord Young test the waters of reform”

Safe Work Australia at Senate Estimates – harmonisation latest

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Rex Hoy of Safe Work Australia (SWA) spoke on 1 June 2010 at the Australian Senate Estimates hearing (around page 44) and confirmed progress on the draft OHS regulations and codes of practice.  The draft Hansard reports Hoy saying:

“Just to cover the areas we are working on: there will be model regulations covering administrative arrangements to support the model act, major hazards facilities, licensing of high-risk work, workplace hazardous chemicals, occupational diving, noise, working in confined spaces, performing manual tasks and induction training for construction work.  There may well be more, depending on finishing this process. Continue reading “Safe Work Australia at Senate Estimates – harmonisation latest”

New nanotechnology safety papers

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Safe Work Australia has released two research papers concerning safety sisues raised by nanotechnology.

An Evaluation of MSDS and Labels associated with the Use of Engineered Nanomaterials

Safe Work Australia advises that

“This report details findings from an evaluation of 50 Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDSs) and 15 labels for products containing engineered nanomaterials. Key findings in the report include:

OHS regulator reveals a blog about OHS fraud and crime

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Spying on people can be entertaining as can be shown by the popularity of hidden camera video on tabloid news shows but there is always a whiff of unfairness and distaste about the practice.

For the last couple of months, Washington State’s Department of Labour & Industries has been running a blog written by its Fraud Prevention and Compliance Manager, Carl Hammersburg.  The blog matches the remit of the regulatory authority and covers a range of industrial enforcement actions.  Occasionally it has included its own video surveillance  of potential workers’ compensation fraudsters.

On 28 April 2010, the blog,called “Nailed“, included video of  Frankie Day who, as a resulted on the L&I investigation, was found guilty of theft and then jailed. Continue reading “OHS regulator reveals a blog about OHS fraud and crime”

Clarification on Andrew Hopkins and the US Commission of Inquiry

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FutureMedia has finally issued a clarification on its claim that Professor Andrew Hopkins was nominated for the US Commission of Inquiry into the BP Gulf of Mexico oil spill as discussed at SafetyAtWorkBlog on 3 June 2010.  It advises that it took its nomination story from comments by the “former Research Director of the US Chemical Safety Board” and apologises “for any confusion caused by the press release” but has not granted permission for the clarification to be republished here

Futuremedia has distributed the correction to the same recipients of the original media release for their consideration.

SafetyAtWorkBlog contacted the US Chemical Safety Board (CSB) directly, as Futuremedia did not divulge the source for the  inaccurate information in its media release. Continue reading “Clarification on Andrew Hopkins and the US Commission of Inquiry”