1. Emotional health & worker safety go hand-in-hand

    Employers play an important role in engaging employees in healthy lifestyles, and research shows that employers who invest in the emotional health of their workforce see a return on that investment with improved safety performance. In fact, mental and emotional health, as it relates to worker safety and productivity, is one of the hottest topics being discussed in board rooms, human resource departments and executive offices across industries.

    The recognition that emotional health impacts the likelihood of employee injury has pushed the concept of employee emotional health, or wellness, to the top of the agenda. The emotional well-being of employees is paramount to the success of a business. For example, stress and anxiety can impair decision-making, impact reaction time and ability to recognize a risk or hazard, while also affecting relationships with others. This, in turn, can create more risks and problems in the business.

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  2. How are wearables making worksites safer?

    How do employers monitor the health and safety of personnel without encroaching on their privacy and productivity? You can’t ask them to stop every so often to weigh in, participate in tests or interact with monitoring tools — that would take time away from their work. What’s more, how do you ensure they’re wearing the proper protective gear at all times and also check that they’re utilizing safety protocols and utilities appropriately? The answer lies with wearable devices.

    Safety wearables enable management teams to remotely evaluate safety, ergonomics and environmental conditions. For example, maybe a worker hasn’t realized the surrounding temperature is climbing dangerously fast. An automated system will ping alerts to the employee and a remote operator who can make sure they get to safety. That’s just one example of how the technology can be used, among a host of benefits.

    The use of safety wearables to mitigate workplace risk and disaster is becoming more commonpl

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  3. Gas Detection in Construction

    In the year 2019/20 there were 201 non-fatal incidents relating to exposure to harmful gases. More concerning is the fact that there were eight deaths, making it clear that gases in occupational settings are a serious hazard which need to be managed. It is clear that some gases are dangerous, but we need to understand how to detect these gases to protect workforces and people who may interact with services or products which use or generate various gases.

    In the construction industry, gases pose a variety of risks, mostly due to their source. These gases could be naturally occurring, which are found trapped in the ground, or they could be used for certain processes or certain trades to carry out tasks effectively. Understanding where gases come from, and how they can be detected, is key for the construction industry to protect its workers. This becomes especially relevant where there is work involving confined spaces, enclosed areas or in specific areas, as there is no
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  4. Occupational Noise Exposure

    After workplace injuries, occupational noise exposure is the most common risk factor in the workplace (WHO Europe, 2017). For hundreds of years we have known that time spent working in noisy workplaces may lead to Noise-Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL). But despite this, occupational noise-induced hearing loss is the most prevalent occupational disease in the world.

    While scientists and physicians have addressed NIHL over the centuries, a Glaswegian surgeon, Thomas Barr, is credited with one of the first controlled epidemiological studies into the effects of occupational noise. Barr examined the link between his patients’ work and their deafness, and in 1886 he reported that c. 75% of boilermakers had difficulty in hearing. He also identified the critical elements of NIHL and also the need for hearing protection, the earlier forms of which were rolled from cotton wool. While Barr noted the characteristic loss at high frequencies, significant progress in the formulation of risk c
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  5. CDC updates mask guidance: N95 and KN95 provide best protection

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday, January 14, 2022 updated its guidance on masks for the general public, now saying that people "may choose" to wear N95 and KN95 masks because they offer the best protection against Covid-19.

    The agency says that the "CDC continues to recommend that you wear the most protective mask you can that fits well and that you will wear consistently."

    Previously, the CDC did not recommend that the general population wear N95 masks or KN95s, a similar type of mask made in China, fearing that a run on those higher-quality masks would impact the supply in health care settings. The CDC now says shortages are no longer a concern.

    "When worn consistently and properly," the agency wrote on its website, N95 respirators approved by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, or NIOSH, "provide the

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  6. China's Tariff's Effects on PPE is Concern of Supply Chain Execs

    Survey also reveals that 20%, believe it will take between 12 months to 2 years for the global supply chain to recover.

    According to a new survey by Supply frame, 32% of surveyed supply chain professionals who work at North American medical supply companies anticipate it will take six to 12 months for global supply chains to return to full capacity for vaccine distribution.

    The survey, based on the responses of 200 supply chain professionals and collected by Conceptial Inc. between August and September 2020, gathered responses on what the biggest hurdles for global supply chains was to be as the COVID-19 pandemic moves into winter and 2021.

    One-fifth of respondents, or 20%, estimated it would take between 12 months to 2 years for the global supply chain to recover.

    Respondents were overall more optimistic about the speed of distributing the vaccine

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  7. Hearing Protection

    High noise levels endanger the hearing of many people in a variety of circumstances. The protection provided, therefore, must be effective.

    Hearing protection is vital for many people in a wide range of industries around the world. In fact, in many situations it is critical in protecting an individual’s hearing. Worldwide, approximately 900 million people suffer with some form of hearing loss. Many of these cases could have been prevented with the correct use of adequate hearing protection.

    Hearing protection can be found in many different forms, whether standard ear-muff or ear-plug designs (known as ‘passive devices’) or more complex models incorporating electronic systems which react differently in varied noise environments, known collectively as ‘active devices’. The design, construction and materials selected for a particular product will contribute to the level of protection offered to the wearer and manufacturers may offer a number of similar products within a

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  8. Avoid Contravening New Workplace Exposure Limits

    3M™ Gas & Flame Detection is advising businesses or public services that do not comply with updated workplace / occupational exposure limits to chemical agents, could potentially face stern consequences, including prosecution. August 2018 saw the deadline pass for compliance with the revised EU Directive 2017/164/EU. However, for businesses that remain concerned, 3M™ Gas & Flame Detection is offering guidance to ensure the regulations are met.

    Indicative occupational exposure limit values (IOELV) are health-based, non-binding values which are derived from recent scientific data and take into account the availability of reliable measurement techniques. For any chemical agent with an IOELV set at EU level, Member States are required to establish a national occupational exposure limit. In the UK, for example, EH40 Workplace exposure limits from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) have been updated directly in line with EU Directive 2017/164/EU. In the latest revision of EH40, whi

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  9. PPE and Protective Clothing

    The Covid-19 pandemic has brought the use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) into sharp focus.

    What is PPE and what is it used for?

    PPE is anything that is worn or held by a person to protect them from injury or infection and encompasses hundreds of products that stretch from head to toe, from protective clothing, helmets, hearing and respiratory protection to body armour, gloves, boots and fall protection.

    However, in the context of Covid-19, PPE relates to items that many key workers, such as NHS staff, have been wearing to help stop the spread of Covid-19. These items include:

    • Face masks
    • Medical gloves
    • Protective clothing
    • Eye protection

    To keep people safe and to reduce health risks, PPE has to comply with all the requirements of the PPE Regulation and carry the CE marking to be sold le
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  10. “I Can’t Breathe”

    We don’t think much about air. It’s kind of like the police; you don’t think of it much until you desperately need it. The air, assuming you are breathing ambient atmosphere, contains in each breath 78% nitrogen and 21% oxygen, along with what the greatest scientific minds on Earth refer to as “other stuff”.

    This “other stuff” mostly comprises gases including carbon dioxide, neon, hydrogen – and methane if the person next to you had baked beans and boiled cabbage for dinner last night – but also aerosols, which are tiny particles that float on air and that we can breathe into our lungs. Some of these particles, for example dust and pollen, are picked up naturally when the wind blows, but even these are far from harmless, particularly if one has a respiratory condition like emphysema, asthma, or COPD. Worse still, air can carry particles that are created by, or used in, the industrial processes like soot, smoke, asbestos, silica, coal dust, and even some extremely dangerous and pot

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