Follow us on Facebook  Follow us on Twitter   Radians Product Videos   Radians on Instagram

877.723.4267   |  Contact  |  Blog

Chris Massa joins Radians as Vice President of Retail Sales

October 14, 2017, Posted in News

Radians, Inc., a leading manufacturer of high performance safety gear for the industrial, construction, and retail markets, recently added Chris Massa to its executive team to oversee Radians' expanding retail channel that provides personal protective equipment to hardware and sporting goods stores and e-commerce sites.

"The addition of Massa as Vice President of Retail Sales is an indication of Radians' commitment to the retail channel," said President Bill England. "His proven track record of success, strategic vision, and cross-functional initiatives to realize aggressive goals positions him as a key player to grow the Radians retail channel."

Massa is responsible for developing and implementing strategic direction and long term sales growth. His focus is to expand the channel while achieving Radians' overall financial goals and to align the retail team with Radians' key customers. He will also be responsible for all licensing initiatives with Stanley Black & Decker.

"I am excited and honored to join the Radians team. Being a part of a growing and dynamic organization was a critical consideration, and I am eager to work with the entire Radians organization while helping our customers win and grow in the market place," said Massa.

Massa, who has extensive experience launching and commercializing new products both in store and online, spent the last seven years of his career working with retailers in North America. He developed strategy and drove sales of consumer goods while working with home centers, home décor retailers, craft stores, specialty retailers, and mass retailers in US, Canada, and Mexico.

Prior to working with North American retailers, he served in various sales leadership and executive positions with Newell Rubbermaid for nearly nine years. Massa began his career with Black + Decker™/DEWALT® and worked for them for eight years in various sales, product training, and leadership roles.

For more information about Radians' comprehensive line of safety products, visit www.radians.com.



SOURCE: The Outdoor Wire

Cold battle combat: Innovative multiple PPE is the armor you need

October 14, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Mary Padron



Cold weather can endanger the lives of workers whose jobs put them in the midst of frigid temperatures and extreme weather conditions. According to OSHA, protective clothing is recommended for work at or below 4 degrees Celsius or below 39.2 degrees Fahrenheit.

If outdoor workers are outfitted with proper PPE, their risks of getting hypothermia, frostbite, or catching a cold are greatly diminished. Bad weather and storms often limit visibility, so if the PPE has high-visibility features, such as reflective tape, the risk of being struck by a vehicle is also decreased.  A side benefit of wearing proper PPE in harsh elements is that workers are more comfortable, which helps to improve performance and productivity.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that hypothermia results when body temperature is below 95 degrees and often occurs from prolonged exposure to cold temperatures. Warning signs include confusion, memory loss, slurred speech, shivering, and drowsiness. According to the CDC, hypothermia “requires emergency medical assistance.”

Frostbite most often affects fingers, toes, the nose, ears, chin, and cheeks. Amputation can result from extreme cases. An initial warning sign of frostbite is pain and redness in the skin. If the skin is not protected, the skin area becomes a grayish-yellow or white. Or, the skin may become waxy and unusually firm or numb. Like hypothermia, frostbite requires medical care.

The risk of becoming a victim to hypothermia, frostbite, and other cold injuries can be greatly reduced by wearing proper PPE.

Heated jackets

One of the innovations in cold weather technology is battery-powered heated jackets. Often powered by 20V lithium-ion batteries, heated jackets feature carbon fiber heating elements that distribute heat to core body areas, such as the neck, chest, waist, and middle back.  They often feature an LED controller that allows the wearer to adjust the jacket’s temperature setting to high, medium, or low. This allows workers to adjust the warmth of the jacket based on changing weather conditions or on their level of exertion or activity.

Many heated jackets in the marketplace can provide up to nine hours of core body warmth and are designed with durable fabrics that are wind and water resistant, depending on the style. The battery component often features a USB power port for charging portable electronics, such as a smart phone or iPad.

Although heated jackets are built with heavy duty construction, they are very stylish and can be worn at work, around town, and at cold outdoor activities, such as a football game.

The importance of layers

To protect your workers from cold injuries, make sure their winter work jackets include multiple layers versus single layers. Multi-layered clothing produces air pockets which trap air, providing additional thermal insulation. For winter work jackets, three layers of protection are ideal:  inner, middle, and outer.

The inner layer should be a wicking material, such as polyester, silk, or polypropylene that draws moisture away from the skin. This inner layer is very important. If moisture wicking does not occur, the thermal insulation of clothing decreases 30 to 50 percent.

A lightweight, insulating middle layer made of thermal fleece, down or wool is next. If the middle layer is easily removable, such as a zip out removable fleece jacket, the worker can customize his comfort to prevent excessive sweating during strenuous activity.

The outer layer is for wind and water protection. Specify breathable, water-repellent outer fabrics, such as 300 Denier PU coated rip stop polyester that is breathable per ANSI 107, 7.6 standards (ASTME96-05).

Multiple types of PPE

In addition to multiple layers, workers need to wear head, hand, and foot protection in addition to winter jackets.

It is estimated that 40 to 50 percent of body heat is lost through the head. Plus, frostbite frequently affects the ears, nose, cheeks, and chin. Wearing protective head gear, such as a liner under a hard hat, helps to reduce heat loss and the risk of frostbite. Thermal balaclavas can also be worn under hard hats or alone for added warmth and comfort. Wearing a scarf around the neck can keep you warm, but a scarf can get caught in machinery. Thermal liners and balaclavas are safer choices.

It’s critical to protect workers’ hands and feet from cold weather stress as frostbite has claimed numerous fingers and toes. Severe frostbite cases can often lead to amputation so it is very important to provide quality hand and foot protection. Choose insulated and water-resistant gloves and footwear, whose design features apply to the specific tasks of the worker.  Insulated boots are better for cold weather than shoes. Boots span the ankles preventing heat loss at a thinly insulated region of the foot. Thick insulated soles are crucial because heat loss occurs when the foot hits cold ground. Double layer thermal socks are always a good choice.

Features to look for

When buying cold weather PPE, make sure the products you select have multiple product features that provide additional warmth, comfort, and protection. Some of these features include:

  • Elasticized waistband and wrist cuffs to keep the elements out;
  • Zip-out removable fleece jacket to allow for weather changes or physical activity changes;
  • High-visibility material and silver reflective tape to keep you visible during a winter storm;
  • Ergonomically-designed products that are comfortable to wear;
  • Thermal-lined pockets to help keep your hands warm;
  • Breathable mesh to wick moisture away from your body;
  • Waterproof and breathable PU Coatings on the exterior of apparel to keep you dry;
  • Battery-powered heated jackets that provide hours of warmth that you control via heat settings.

 

Don’t forget convenience and versatility features like 3-in-1 designs, such as a balaclava that easily converts into a neck gator or face shield or bomber jackets and parkas that can be worn three ways. There are even 4-in-1 reversible jacket designs with zip-off sleeves that convert a safety jacket into a safety vest or reverse to a fashion jacket and vest to wear after work.

Before the winter season begins, hold a safety meeting and discuss hypothermia, frostbite, and cold stress first aid. Explain your inclement weather policy and hand out winter gear to your work crew. Keeping workers warm and dry improves morale and productivity on winter jobsites. Leading manufacturers of PPE have product champions and safety specialists to help you choose your winter safety gear.



SOURCE: ISHN

The Millennial Generation: Wired for Sound and At Risk for Hearing Loss

October 14, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Mary Padron



Sound-level meter apps available for smart phones "can have a tremendous and far-reaching impact in the area of noise control," says the CDC.

Do you have a favorite sound? Is it the sweet laughter of someone you love? Or do you appreciate the sounds of a rushing river or waves lapping upon the beach of your favorite seaside town? Or, like many Millennials, maybe your favorite sounds are your favorite songs played from your iPod while wearing ear buds.

No matter what your favorite sounds are, how do you protect your hearing so that you are not a victim of noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL), especially if you are a Millennial whose hearing may already be compromised from over exposure to personal electronic devices?

Unfortunately, hearing loss negatively impacts a person's job, relationships, and lifestyle. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that hearing loss "is the third most common chronic physical condition in the United States. It is twice as common as diabetes or cancer."

The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) estimates that "approximately 15 percent of Americans (26 million people) between the ages of 20 and 69 have high frequency hearing loss due to over exposure to noise at work or during leisure activities."

Over exposure to noise can be detrimental to hearing health and can lead to:

  • tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
  • temporary, mild, or permanent hearing loss
  • loss of productivity
  • increased probability of work-related accidents and injury

At Risk for Hearing Loss

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics, Millennials represent 36 percent of the U.S. workforce and will represent 75 percent by the year 2025. Born between 1980 and 2000, they already have experienced a steady stream of loud noise in their personal lives through ear buds and personal electronic devices. Plus, younger workers entering the workforce often underestimate the risks of noise hazards.

Additionally, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates globally that 1.1 billion teenagers and young adults, which includes Millennials, are already at risk for hearing loss from unsafe use of electronic devices or from exposure to dangerous sound levels at nightclubs, concert halls, or sporting events.

In February 2017, CDC released a survey that said around 8 million people ages 20 to 29 suffer from some kind of hearing loss. This amounts to 7 percent of this age group who can’t hear high-pitched sounds. This figure goes up to 10 percent for people ages 30 to 39.

The cumulative effect of over exposure to sound in Millennials' personal and workplace lives could cause the "generation wired for sound" and the younger generations that follow to suffer from hearing loss more frequently than the generations before them. Safety managers and professionals need to address the increased risk of hearing loss for Millennials in their hearing conservation programs, especially because they represent more than one-third of today’s workforce.

How to Motivate Millennials to Protect their Hearing through Technology

Luckily, despite these statistics, WHO says NIHL "is the most common, permanent, and preventable occupational injury in the world." Because Millennials are now the largest generation in the U.S. labor force, having surpassed Baby Boomers and Gen Xers, how can we motivate them to protect their hearing at work and in their personal lives?

Most safety managers are familiar with the primary methods to help prevent hearing loss, including education, engineering and administration controls, "buy quiet" practices, and the use of hearing protection devices (HPDs), such as foam ear plugs and ear muffs.

However, with Millennials, there is another tool which can be helpful—technology and the evolving smart phone apps that help measure sound. After all, Millennials have grown up on technology and respond positively to it. They are tech-savvy, well educated, and they love a good smart phone app.

How can you tell when a noise is unhealthy for your ears? There's an app for that. Sound-level meter apps available for smart phones "can have a tremendous and far-reaching impact in the area of noise control," says CDC. The mobile nature of the smart phone makes it easy for Millennials to take control of their hearing health by downloading apps that measure the decibel level of sounds in the environment around them. CDC and NIOSH say the benefits of these apps include:

  • Raise workers' awareness about their work environment
  • Help workers make informed decisions about the potential hazards to their hearing
  • Serve as a research tool to collect noise exposure data
  • Promote better hearing health and prevention efforts
  • Easy to use

 

Although many smart phone apps are very accurate, they should not be used for OSHA compliance purposes or professional-grade sound measurement. Instead, sound meter apps should be used as a tool to screen surrounding environments for noise pollution, including workplaces, gyms, concerts, power appliances, kitchen tools, loud moving vehicles, airports, etc. Smart phone apps are not intended to be used in diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition, nor are they intended to be used as legal evidence for workplace/merchandise safety.

However, the inexpensive cost, ease of use, and portability of smart phone apps can provide Millennials with an approximate value of noise levels to motivate them to use hearing protection devices, which include foam ear plugs, passive and electronic ear muffs, custom-molded ear plugs, banded protection, etc.

Five Noise/Sound Meter Apps for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch

Below are five of the more professional rated apps in the marketplace. Remember, smart phone apps are not as accurate as a professional SPL noise meter, which can cost in the thousands of dollars. However, the affordable apps below, when used properly, can provide a good approximate value of the noise levels in your environment.

Which do you think has more power to motivate a Millennial? A sign that says "Hearing Protection Must Be Worn in This Area," or when a worker activates his or her sound meter app and sees "100 dB SPL"?



In 2014, the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) conducted a pilot study to determine which smart phone apps were the most reliable. The resulting paper, "Evaluation of Smartphone Sound Measurement Applications," was published in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America. They studied both iOS and Android apps. For more in-depth scientific information about the most reliable smart phone sound-level meter apps, visit http://asa.scitation.org/doi/full/10.1121/1.4865269.

Six Workplace Training Strategies That Will Empower Millennials to Protect Their Hearing

How can a safety professional encourage Millennials to better protect their hearing both in their professional and personal lives? One key way is to develop digital safety training that caters to the generation that grew up with a cell phone in their purse or pocket.

1. Throw away that black training binder and go digital. Offer safety training on the go by including mobile-enabled training in your safety courses. This gives Millennials the flexibility to train any time and anywhere and to engage in training when it best fits into their workflow.

2. Include lots of safety training videos in your modules. Millennials prefer video to PowerPoint decks as they often prefer watching video to reading. The popularity of YouTube among Millennials is a testament to video-based training modules. For example, many workplaces use disposable foam ear plugs for their hearing protection. Instead of showing a diagram on how to insert the ear plug, show a video that focuses on proper insertion techniques. Many foam plug manufacturers have videos like this on their websites for easy download.

3. Position your classroom instruction as a "Coaching Class."

4. Break up content into bite-size, easy-to-read pieces with lots of headlines.

5. Use social media to enhance training. Possible social media training exercise for hearing protection:

Have your employees download one of the sound/ noise level meter apps from the Internet, many of which are free. You may want your employees to download different apps to compare differences. Like a treasure hunt, give your employees three or five key noise areas to measure the Sound Pressure Level (SPL) with their apps. On a dedicated Facebook page for the training exercise, ask them to post the sound pressure level in decibels that correlates to the different noise areas being measured.

Then review the results of the exercise in a group setting. For this discussion, make sure you have different kinds of hearing protection available with a range of NRRs. Then discuss the type of hearing protection needed or not needed for the different noise areas. This exercise makes learning more engaging and memorable and helps increase awareness of "hearing loss danger zones" at your workplace.

6. Ask Millennials for their input about the hearing protection devices for your safety program. Make it fun. Ask them to take a "selfie" wearing the hearing protection and to comment on what they like or don't like about the product in 140 characters or less—think Twitter. This exercise can provide the safety manager with valuable insight on which HPDs will be more readily adopted by their Millennial employees, which always helps increase compliance.

Sound Meter Level Apps Help Raise the Consciousness of Noise Pollution

Whether you are a Millennial, a Gen-Xer, or a Baby Boomer, all workers need to be aware of the dangers of hearing loss. One way to increase awareness is through sound meter level apps that can be affordably downloaded from iTunes or Google Play. Although these apps can’t be used for OSHA compliance, many of them serve as a viable measurement tool that can alert workers to the hearing hazards around them at work and at play.

Sound meter apps help raise the consciousness level of noise pollution; we can hope the increased awareness will lead to heightened levels of compliance for wearing the proper hearing protection at work. Who knows, maybe Millennials will begin to keep foam ear plugs in their purses or pockets alongside their smart phones.



SOURCE: OH&S

Product Spotlights - RadWear® High Visibility Apparel

August 29, 2017, Posted in News



Radians manufactures a comprehensive line of safety products that includes a vast selection of high visibility apparel under its RadWear® brand. The Radians RadWear® line includes Type R Class 2 and Class 3 safety vests, polos, T-shirts, lightweight and heavy-duty rainwear, wind shirts, surveyor pants, 4-in-1 reversible windbreakers and quilted jackets, and a variety of cold weather jackets and parkas.

Industrial Rainwear



SOURCE: OH&S

Choosing the Right Rainwear for the Right Application

August 31, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Debbie Smith



Takeaway: Using the right rainwear can help you keep workers safe while keeping them dry.

The number one priority for employers is keeping their employees safe. But there's one thing that is often forgotten until it’s required: rainwear.

Providing adequate rain PPE is an essential part of keeping your workers safe throughout their shift. No worker enjoys having their clothes soaked through, and you need to make sure they're supplied with rainwear that won't compromise the safety benefits of their other equipment.

While OSHA does not set specific standards for working in the rain, they do provide guidance for outdoor industries that may be affected by rainy conditions, including construction and logging.

Assessing Your Needs

So, where do you start? The first step should be a thorough assessment of the worksite and worker requirements. It’s critical to fully understand employee needs and the hazards they face before selecting gear to protect them.

Some questions to get you started:

  • What tasks will employees be performing?
  • How long will the gear be used for?
  • Are hazardous chemicals involved?
  • Are specific rainwear standards applicable to this job?
  • Does this application require breathable or non-breathable PPE?
  • What is the climate like?

Consider the Climate

Your PPE needs are heavily influenced by the climate in which your employees work. Though it seems obvious, the northeast in July requires entirely different rainwear than in December, and you have to plan for this.

Depending on the kind of hazards the workers will encounter, they might need to be equipped with rainwear that uses non-breathable waterproof materials. Non-breathable material tends to be heavier and doesn't allow good airflow to keep the wearer comfortable in the heat. Workers using non-breathable rainwear in extreme heat, then, will require additional PPE, such as cooling towels, to keep them cool and protect them from heat exhaustion (see New Trends in Equipment to Help Outdoor Workers Beat the Heat to learn about other options).

Addressing Job Hazards

Simply protecting your workers from getting wet is one thing. Ensuring they aren’t at risk for electrocution, burns, or jobsite accidents is quite another. Employers must identify and account for these hazards when choosing rainwear for their crews. Here are some things to consider.

Boots

Boots should be waterproof to protect workers’ feet and ensure comfort – no one can do their best work when water seeps into their boots and soaks their socks.

Make sure they also have strong traction to prevent slips and falls in wet weather. This is especially important in the winter months when ladders are slick and puddles can turn to ice (learn more in 6 Tips for Safer Walking-Working Surfaces).

Rain Suit

Appropriate rain gear should include both a jacket and pants. Wool or synthetic materials are great choices for cold weather, as they insulate even when they're wet. Be sure the suit fits properly so it doesn’t interfere with movement.

Low Visibility

Inclement weather conditions and working outdoors in poorly lit locations can severely reduce visibility, putting workers at risk of being struck by vehicles and other dangers. To ensure workers can always be seen, they should be provided with waterproof high-visibility jackets. High-visibility rain gear that has faded or become dull will do little to make workers noticeable and should be replaced immediately.

Fire Hazards

Some applications call for additional protection in the form of fire resistance (FR). This broad-reaching term means different things in different applications. In the electric utility industry, FR really means arc resistant – providing protection from an electric arc flash. The standards for this type of gear are outlined in ASTM F1891, Standard Specification for Arc and Flame Resistant Rainwear.

There are three things to look for when selecting FR rainwear:

  • The arc rating – how much energy is required to create the 50 percent probability of a second-degree burn over bare skin
  • The heat attenuation factor (HAF) – the percentage of energy that is blocked by the material
  • The break-open threshold – the amount of energy it takes to create openings in the material (generally the outer layer of the rain jacket)

Getting the Right Kind of Waterproofing

Waterproof rainwear generally comes in two types: breathable and non-breathable. Let’s look at the best applications for each.

Breathable Waterproof Materials

Rain gear made from breathable materials have an exterior that does not let outside elements penetrate through it, but allows perspiration to dissipate through the interior coating. This helps avoid the clammy feeling that results from sweat building up next to the skin. The protective coating is generally either a liquid coating that is applied to the shell fabric (minimal breathability) or a film that is applied using an adhesive (good breathability).

Advantages:

  • Lightweight
  • Woven exterior with interior coating enhances durability
  • Stitched and tape-sealed seams ensure integrity during inclement weather

When to use it:

  • Construction applications that require ANSI/ISEA 107-2015 standards for hi-visibility
  • Where employees are exposed to unpredictable climate conditions
  • In applications where workers are not at risk for chemical exposure
Non-Breathable Waterproof Materials

Like the name suggests, non-breathable rainwear does not allow air to flow through. The material used is impermeable so as not to allow anything through the exterior coating and ensure complete protection for the user.

Since stitching can absorb chemicals, another potential hazard, these products are usually constructed using a heat-weld method to ensure the strength of seams without the need for stitching. This type of rainwear also has minimal features to avoid getting caught on equipment, tears, and, ultimately, exposure to dangerous chemicals.

It’s important to conduct an assessment of the job application and potential hazards before selecting non-breathable gear. Check with the manufacturer to confirm that the material used will maintain its integrity when exposed to the chemicals used in your workplace.

When to use it:

  • Jobs with chemical applications
  • Chemical blasting with high water PSI factors
  • Sanitation and truck wash down applications
  • Wastewater management, environmental clean-up, petro-chemical, and mining

Who Bears the Cost?

While OSHA requires employers to pay for workers’ personal protective equipment, they do not require them to cover ordinary clothing, including raincoats. Several states, however, categorize rain gear as PPE. Be sure to look into this and find out what your rainwear obligations are.

Conclusion

Selecting the right rainwear for the right application isn’t always as easy as it sounds. An initial assessment of workplace needs and risks is critical to ensure that the gear you choose is sufficient to address the identified risk factors. It’s not just about keeping workers dry – it’s about keeping them safe.



SOURCE: Safeopedia

Thomasville company makes durable safety gear

August 12, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Brad Jones



THOMASVILLE, N.C. -- It's hard to hide the products made by Radians in Thomasville.

Whether it's a vest, a shirt or jacket - they are high-impact colors, with reflective stripes and patterns. You can't miss them.

Getting the job done is more than just being bright and reflective, sometimes it's adding custom features like loops or pockets, or a custom specialty like a logo.

Phillip Young and a partner started as Carolina Safety Sport --- and built the business -- selling it to Radians in 2011.

But he wanted to make sure the jobs he created in Davidson County would stay there.

But now, they're growing, and adding more square footage and adding jobs.

And more customers are skipping safety gear that's made overseas and going with high visibility wear that's customizable, fire retardant and made close to home.

Not too many years ago, you didn't notice all the people working on job sites or along the side of the road. Now you do.

Being safe has just become part of the job.

There are no statistics, but accidents are down in work zones - and that's a sign that we're all paying better attention to the gear that Radians supplies to people all across the country.



SOURCE: FOX8

Radians Introduces New Colors in Their Ladies Range Line

July 29, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Mary Padron

MEMPHIS, TN——Radians®, a market leader in the development and manufacturing of safety gear for shooters and hunters, has added two popular colors, coral and aqua, to its ladies range series, which includes hearing protection and safety glasses.

According to Wes Miller, Director of Sales for Sporting Goods, "Women are the fastest growing segment of gun owners in the United States. While they enjoy both sport and leisure shooting, many are simply looking at gun ownership as a means of extra security and protection. Increased enrollment in gun safety courses, range use and gun permits for women means more females want PPE that fits their size and their style while providing maximum comfort and protection.

"Until recently, girls with guns had very limited choices in the colors of their safety gear," says Miller. Our new Ladies PPE Gear gives the female shooter and huntress new color choices in addition to traditional pink."

The Radians Lowset™ low profile, compact folding earmuffs (NRR21) will be sold individually and are now available in a coral/charcoal combination or an aqua/charcoal combination.

Matching ladies range eyewear that complies with ANSI Z87.1+ standards are also sold individually and are designed with a smaller frame to provide a better fit for ladies and youth. The eyewear features sporty, flexible dual molded temple arms for maximum comfort, an adjustable rubber nosepiece for a custom fit, a scratch resistant hard coat, and 99.9% UVA / UVB protection.

A Lowset Range Combo kit in aqua is also available. The kit includes both the earmuff and safety glass and is ideal for new female shooters who are in the market for both ear and eye protection.

Radians new Ladies PPE Gear line can be found at sporting goods outlets and e-commerce sites. All of Radians products are sold through authorized distributors. For more information, visit www.radians.com or call toll-free 1-877-723-4267 to speak to a safety professional.

Radians® is a Memphis, TN-based manufacturer of quality PPE, including safety eyewear, RadWear® high visibility apparel, rainwear, hearing protection, hand protection, head gear, cooling products, heated jackets, eyewash stations, and lens cleaning systems. Radians has partnered with highly respected companies including DSM Dyneema, DEWALT® and BLACK+DECKER™ to provide high performance personal protection products. Their brands include Crossfire® by Radians, Arctic RadWear®, Nordic Blaze®, and VisionAid®. An ISO 9001:2008 certified leader in the PPE industry, the company has additional facilities in Reno, NV, Thomasville, NC, British Columbia, and the United Kingdom. For more information, visit www.Radians.com.



SOURCE: www.theoutdoorwire.com

Why Don't Workers Wear Gloves?

July 27, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Mary Padron

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that wearing gloves reduces the relative risk of hand injuries by 60 percent. That’s a pretty good statistic, which should encourage industrial and construction workers to put on their gloves. However, safety professionals are frequently challenged—on a daily basis—by workers who won’t willingly put on their work gloves or by employees who won’t consistently wear their gloves during the work day.

The BLS says hand injuries are the No. 2 leading cause of work-related injury and the most preventable, yet they send more than one million workers to the emergency room annually.

So why don’t workers wear gloves?

Workers often don’t wear gloves because many gloves in the marketplace are too bulky or don’t allow for the dexterity and control that workers need to do their jobs. Or, after extended wear, the glove becomes hot, awkward and downright uncomfortable.

What can suppliers do to improve compliance for hand protection?

Savvy suppliers of hand protection understand that “protection and comfort are both knights at the roundtable.” Leading manufacturers are actively listening to the “uncomfortable” complaints made by industrial workers and are engineering gloves made with Dyneema Diamond Technology, which is the new standard in cut protection – providing double to triple improvement in cut resistance with gloves that are 40 percent lighter than gloves made with aramid fiber. The thin fiber and unique polymer dramatically aid in producing a glove that is comfortable to wear.

Some benefits of gloves made with Dyneema Diamond Technology include:

  • Better feel and control
  • Radiates heat away from hands for all-day comfort
  • High strength
  • Cool-touch comfort
  • Increased cut resistance without fiberglass discomfort
  • Durable and washable for long lasting protection
  • Resistant to UV and chemicals, like bleach
  • Floats on water



SOURCE: Industrial Supply

Trends and Technologies in Making Cut Protective Gloves Truly Comfortable

July 02, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Bob Kelsey

Worker Sorting Through Materials Wearing Protective Gloves

Takeaway: New technologies have made cut-proof gloves functional, resistant, and now, thanks to technologically advanced fibers, truly comfortable.

"My hands are my livelihood." This is a truth for millions of workers in the construction, automotive, glass, and sheet metal industries. Hand injuries rank second among work-related injuries, most of which could have been prevented by simply pulling on a proper pair of cut resistant gloves.

It's unfortunate but not surprising that so many workers don't wear their safety gloves. After all, wearing gloves all day can be unpleasant and uncomfortable. Thankfully, new fiber technology has dramatically improved the wearer's comfort while simultaneously improving cut protection.

The Bare Bones of Hand Injuries

Each of our hands has 29 bones along with major nerves, arteries, veins, muscles, tendons, ligaments, cartilage, skin, and fingernails. Given the complexity of the human hand, an injury can be small physically but come with a very high cost—more than $6,000 on average, to be precise. Even getting a few stitches can cost around $2,000 and come with significant work-related restrictions.

Even with the best safety protocols in place, hand injuries still occur. The most common ones include:

 

Many of these can be prevented by a good pair of work gloves suited for the types of tasks involved on a job. But how do you know which gloves are right for you?

Cut Ratings Explained

It can be confusing and difficult to figure out which glove is best for the type of work you’re doing. To that end, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) has established a rating system regarding different cut hazards and the level of protection best suited for each:

  • Cut Level 1 – Nuisance Cuts: This level essentially covers paper cuts
  • Cut Level 2 – Low Cut Hazards: Most common in construction and package handling jobs
  • Cut Level 3 and 4 – Moderate Cut Hazards: Most common in lighter metal stamping and light glass handling positions
  • Cut Level 5 to 9 – High & Extreme Cut Hazards: These are the heavier jobs involving sheet metal, glass, sharp blades, razors, food service, pulp and paper, and so on

 

There are also EN388 (European Glove standards) ratings that address the levels of puncture, tear, blade cut, and abrasion resistance in a similar manner. These guidelines have been applied to protective equipment, especially gloves, to help companies and individuals determine the best gear for their work.

In Search of Comfort, Function, and Protection

Given the hazards workers face, why don’t more of them wear gloves to protect their hands against these injuries? Employees may argue that wearing gloves diminishes grip and dexterity, which can compromise safety in an entirely different way. After all, if you can’t handle tools appropriately, how can you use them safely?

Arguments like these may have had some weight in the past, but technology has evolved to make safety gloves more flexible and comfortable than ever, thanks to engineered yarns (also known as super yarns).

In the past, protective gloves were usually rigid, hot, and generally uncomfortable. Some workers may have chosen leather gloves only to find that, although better than nothing, they offered almost no protection against cut-related injuries. Today, there are several options available that provide comfort, grip, and varying levels of protection so individuals can choose the glove that’s best for the task at hand.

The Evolution of Cut-Proof Protection

For a long time, leather was the basis for protective gloves, but that essentially meant wearing a second skin that didn’t offer much protection at all. Since then, technological advances like synthetic fibers have led to lighter, more flexible, and durable options.

Polyester and nylon options provide some minimal protection against minor abrasions. Another synthetically developed option is HPPE (High Performance Polyethylene) technology that are generally inexpensive and boast protection ratings at levels two and three.

Gloves made of Kevlar (or its generic counterpart, Aramid) are able to withstand excessive temperatures while still being suitable for gripping. Their flame-resistant fibers also comply with FDA food handling regulations.

Dyneema is another synthetic fabric that provides high levels of protection. It is noted to be fifteen times stronger than steel despite being thin and light-weight. Gloves made with Dyneema have fibers so small and thin that they don't irritate the skin, making it possible to wear them longer without side effects. Dyneema, moreover, can dissipate body heat and cool the wearer's hand, which is a great perk for anyone who has to work outdoors in the summer or in higher temperature work environments.

Dyneema represents a step-change in cut resistant fibers. It's stronger, lighter, and thinner than aramid materials and fifteen times stronger than steel on a weigh-per-weight basis. Gloves made with Dyneema offer enhanced cut protection, are cool to the touch, last longer, and are resistant to chemicals and UV light.

Further technological enhancements have paved the way for Dyneema Diamond Technology, which retains the same properties as standard Dyneema but doubles the cut resistance of the yarn at the same glove thickness or provides the same cut resistance in a thinner glove for improved dexterity and comfort.

The Bottom Line

There’s no substitute for being careful and complying with safety standards, but that shouldn't mean having to be uncomfortable throughout your entire shift. Cut-proof gloves have come a long way and today’s technology balances protection with wearability, so no one has to choose between comfort and protecting two of their greatest assets while on the job.



SOURCE: Safeopedia

How Brazilians Cure a Hangover and Other Jet Set Travel Cheats

July 15, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Mark Ellwood

Bicycle maker Lorenzo Martone has serious tips on how to tune out sound on an airplane and always be ready for an adventure.

Lorenzo Martone made his name as publicist for such models as Victoria’s Secret angel Alessandra Ambrosio before turning a passion for bicycles into a successful business. In 2012, he started Martone Cycling Company,  selling luxury bikes and accessories online and at such stores as Los Angeles's Fred Segal and Colette in Paris. Martone’s latest product is a limited-edition rose-gold model of his standard MCC bike.

Martone lives in New York and says he flies around 500,000 miles a year, mostly on American Airlines. It's “the only airline that makes me feel like a millionaire—and that’s the only type of millionaire I am,” he laughs. “In miles.”

Want to tune out noise on a plane? Make like a construction worker.

I’m a light sleeper, and my search for earplugs started from me sleeping with men who snore—I’ve had multiple boyfriends with a serious, severe snoring problem. And the travel experience is so noisy for me, too; airlines have become flying buses, where you come across lots of people that don’t really know how to behave when sharing a small amount of space. So I need good earplugs, and not the ones they give you on the plane. I researched the brand that construction people use, and I use those, which are custom fit to your ear: Radians. But because the airplane itself is so loud, I add a pair of Bose earphones on top of that, even if I’m not listening to music or watching movies.

Always have an emergency kit and make sure it's stocked with these four things.

never leave home without my passport. I remember I was living in Europe, in Paris, and it was one of those casual dinner situations, where friends of friends decided to go to Ibiza right away for the opening weekend of lots of clubs. I couldn’t go, and I regret it. So now, even in the U.S., where I can travel with my driver’s license, I always make sure to bring my passport in case someone has one of those ideas.

And I pack my "What if I bump into a crazy rich friend with a jet?" kit. It consists of some scandalous swimming trunks—I’m Brazilian, so I’m very comfortable in Speedos all day long, and I’m not ashamed of going to the supermarket shirtless—and my sunglasses and hangover pills, Engov. You can buy them over the counter in Brazil, in a gold package that looks like a condom package. You're supposed to take one before you start drinking and another one after, but it’s really hard to remember. I take one when I’m feeling the pain of the hangover, and it always works. I learned about it from my parents who said, "You’re going to be having a big night—here, we don’t want to hear complaints about your headache tomorrow," Every time I go to Brazil, I have more and more orders from friends. It’s like I’m trafficking Engov.

When in St. Barts, do as the locals do. 

I’ve been going to St. Barts with my best friend [and ex-fiancé] Marc Jacobs for maybe seven years now for Christmas and New Years. Don’t be scared—people look up the airport online and see the two little mountains the plane has to go through [to land], and it looks scary, but you get used to it. There is a big New York City art collector slash real estate mogul slash Russian billionaire crowd, but I like that you can make out of St. Barts whatever you want—there’s also a very local side to it, a very islandy Caribbean vibe. There is a place only locals go called Le Select, right in the center [of Gustavia]. It’s been there forever, with a big terrace and plastic chairs; they only have burgers and beer. I always like going there, as it’s the opposite of so many other places on the island that are so frou-frou.

Always opt for an AirBnB over a hotel.

AirBnB has a filter that tells if a place is only for AirBnB or if someone lives there. Most people prefer to go to AirBnBs where there’s no-one [in residence], but I think the opposite. I don’t want to be in a plain apartment decorated with Ikea furniture so it can be rented on AirBnB; I want to open a fridge and see what people eat. I was going to Tel Aviv in the summer of 2014, and all my friends canceled at the last minute, so I found an AirBnB in Yafo, a local neighborhood that wasn’t very touristy. I was on the way up the stairs to the third-floor apartment, and I smelled this delicious cake being cooked. The woman was literally waiting for me, baking a cake—and she was pregnant, very pregnant. I asked when it was due, and she told me, "Tomorrow." I said, "Oh my God, girl, get outta here—what are you doing?Æ 24 hours later, I’m receiving baby pictures, and we’ve kept in touch since then. I even got to meet the baby.

The pros of flying with a bike.

The first thing you need to do is buy a bike suitcase. All you have to do is take the front wheel off your bike, and its fits in the case—those cases are accepted by pretty much any airline, as oversize baggage like surfboards or instruments, but do call and check. You usually need to book in advance, too, as they only allow a certain number of oversize bags on a plane. When you arrive, you go to that section of the airport for extra-size luggage, and the people that are in that room are so interesting: They’re musicians, they’re surfers. In that room, everyone is very chatty. It feels like a little gang of people that share something extra, a little community.

When in a new city, consider exploring by bicycle.

What I love about Tokyo is that you can bike on the sidewalk legally. It’s an interesting experience, as you’re among the pedestrians, and the place is so packed, but they don’t care, and they don’t complain about stepping aside for the bike. People are scared of biking in New York because of the traffic, but I think it’s crazy, and so fun. I love the Lower East Side in New York, especially Forsyth Street, because it has a bike lane in the middle, and it’s very green. That area, the new Chinatown, has such a strong character, and it’s full of new small art galleries I love.

How to travel with your dog.

I started traveling with my dog, Mia, when she was a little puppy so she could get used to it. She is an emotional-support dog—my doctor wrote me a letter that I needed her as an emotional support, because I think I sounded crazy enough when I talked about how attached to her I was. So you need to call and make sure that the letter is in your booking on your airline of preference [so you can bring the dog on board]. The best airports have cute dog relief areas now, too: There was a very cute one in Dallas, and the airport that’s most pet friendly is San Francisco. They love dogs there, and there are lots of signs. I say, if you’re going to fly with a pet, fly via San Francisco.



SOURCE: Bloomberg Pursuits

Six Serious Consequences of Heat Stress

July 02, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Joyce Wooley

Takeaway: Educate your workers about heat stress and establish a heat stress safety plan to make sure none of your employees have to experience these six effects of heat stress.

The heat workers experience from June to September throughout much of the country presents a serious health and safety hazard. On days when the temperature climbs near 100°F with high humidity, outdoor workplaces and job sites can be uncomfortable and, if you’re not prepared, downright dangerous.

Luckily, you're not helpless in the face of these risks. While you can't do anything about the temperature, understanding the serious consequences of heat stress can help you prevent heat-related injuries and illnesses.

What Is Heat Stress?

Heat stress occurs when your core body temperature increases significantly but your body isn't able to cool itself by sweating.

Who is at risk? Sensitivity to heat varies among the population and is influenced by age, weight, physical fitness, use of alcohol or medications, hydration level, and various medical conditions. But anyone who works in the heat for prolonged periods can succumb to heat stress. Workers in operations involving high air temperatures, radiant heat sources, high humidity, direct physical contact with hot objects, or strenuous physical activities are generally at the highest risk.

Six Serious Consequences of Heat Stress

Heat stress is no joke, and its effects can range from slight discomfort to life-threatening illness. Here are six of its most common consequences.

Mental Fatigue

Studies have shown that even a two percent dehydration level due to heat stress dramatically decreases a worker’s mental performance and ability to focus.

In fact, a performance study by NASA concluded that at temperatures of 80°F, workers make five errors per hour and 19 per three hours. At 95°F, the number of mistakes increased to 60 per hour and 138 every three hours—without the worker realizing it. The studies observed telegraph key operators at work, so their mistakes were not critical, but you can just imagine what would happen if a heavy machine manufacturer made an average of one mistake every minute.

Impaired Decision-Making and Decreased Reaction Time

Several studies have looked at the link between heat stress dehydration, the decision-making process, and work-related accidents. One particular study found that two percent of body weight loss due to dehydration impaired visual motor tracking, short-term memory, attention, and arithmetic efficiency. At an extreme four percent of body fluid loss, the study noted a 23 percent reduction in reaction time as compared to a properly hydrated individual.

It goes without saying that dehydration can be a severe workplace hazard in occupations where attention to detail or fast reaction time is key to maintaining operational safety.

Physical Exhaustion

At high temperatures, the body must work extra hard to cool itself. Studies have demonstrated that when ambient temperatures reach 95°F, the body moves half of its blood to the skin to produce moisture. Unfortunately this means that the remaining organs have to operate with only half the blood they normally require, leading to a lack of oxygen for working muscles.

After a prolonged period of working in the heat, the heart simply cannot meet the peak oxygen needs of each of the organ systems while adequately cooling the body. This is the point where workers feel extremely dehydrated and experience of physical exhaustion and muscle fatigue.

Productivity lags as a result of this exhaustion. In a study that placed forest workers in a controlled environment where one group was properly hydrated and the other dehydrated to just one percent of body weight loss, researchers found a 12 percent decrease in productivity from the dehydrated group.

Heat Rash

Heat-related rashes are the most common problem observed in hot work environments. Caused largely by sweating, heat rash looks like a cluster of red pimples or small blisters and may appear on the neck, upper chest, groin, under the breasts, or in the elbow creases.

The best antidote to heat rash is a cooler work environment with less humidity. The rash should be kept dry; ointments or anything that moistens the skin may make it worse.

While heat rashes themselves are not inherently dangerous, there can be complications if they aren't treated by moving the worker to a cooler environment. An untreated heat rash can become infected or reduce sweating, compromising the body's ability to regulate its temperature. Since these areas of skin are damaged, they may also be more susceptible to absorbing toxic chemicals.

Heat Exhaustion

Heat exhaustion is often a precursor to the more serious heat stroke and is generally accompanied by a slightly elevated core body temperature.

Symptoms of heat exhaustion include:

  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Weakness
  • Irritability
  • Confusion
  • Thirst
  • Heavy sweating
  • Decreased urine output.


Workers with heat exhaustion should be removed from the heat, given liquids, and cooled with cold compresses while awaiting medical evaluation.

Heat Stroke

Perhaps the most serious consequence of heat stress, heat stroke is considered a serious medical emergency and occurs when the body’s heat regulating system fails. It includes a major disruption of the nervous system and a body temperature in excess of 104°F. Workers suffering from heat stroke may or may not continue sweating.

It’s imperative that those showing signs of heat stroke be taken to a shady area and cooled rapidly using ice while waiting for medical care.

Ensure Worker Safety with a Comprehensive Heat Stress Program

Educating your employees is one of the most important steps you can take to prevent workplace accidents related to heat stress. Reduced cognitive function, attention span, and visual motor tracking can have deadly consequences in many workplaces—but it’s completely preventable.

Establishing a workplace safety program for heat stress is critical for any organization that places workers in hot environments. Teach employees to recognize the hazards and to know what steps to take to prevent heat-related illness. Ensure supervisors make accommodations for the heat, where possible, including adjusting working schedules and providing a shady area with plenty of access to drinking water. Cooling towels, headbands, head shades, and neck wraps can also offer workers relief from the heat because they help to accelerate the evaporative cooling.

Conclusion

By educating employees, you can reduce heat stress. And by reducing heat stress, you can create a safer workplace with fewer accidents and increased productivity. Everyone benefits from taking a more careful approach to working in the summer heat.



SOURCE: Safeopedia

Cooling Down Core Temps

June 16, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Mary Padron

We all learned in science class that homeostasis is the self-regulating process by which our bodies maintain stability. One of the most important functions of homeostasis is the regulation of body temperature, which is called thermoregulation. Thermoregulation is the homeostatic process that allows the human body to maintain its core internal temperature of 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit or 37 degrees Celsius.

All thermoregulation mechanisms, such as sweating and shivering, are designed to return the body to its internal core temperature. If a worker’s internal core temperature is compromised while working in hot and humid working conditions, the worker becomes vulnerable to heat stress or heat induced illnesses. According to OSHA, thousands of workers are negatively impacted by heat stress each year and some even die from it.

What is heat stress?

Heat stress occurs when the body is no longer able to cool itself by sweating because the surrounding air temperature is close to or exceeds core body temperature. When the body is unable to cool itself by sweating, several heatinduced illnesses can occur, such as:

  • Heat cramps—Muscle spasms associated with cramping in the abdomen, arms and calves often caused by losing large amounts of salt/ electrolytes and water through physical exertion
  • Heat rashes—The skin’s sweat glands are blocked and the sweat produced can’t reach the surface of the skin to evaporate. This causes inflammation that results in a rash with tiny red blisters or bumps on the skin. Sometimes the bumps can be white or yellow as well.
  • Heat exhaustion—The body overheats when the body’s cooling mechanism to maintain a normal core temperature begins to fail, usually from excessive heat and dehydration. Untreated, heat exhaustion can lead to heat stroke. (See chart below.)
  • The often fatal heat stroke— Heat stroke is considered a medical emergency where the core body temperature is greater than 104 degrees Fahrenheit causing complications with the central nervous system.

Heat stress risk factors

Any job site—indoors or outdoors—that can raise a worker’s internal core temperature increases the risk of heat stress. High heat environments, high humidity areas, radiant heat sources, direct physical contact with hot objects, or strenuous physical activities can induce heat stress in employees. Other risk factors include weight, physical fitness and acclimatization, dehydration, metabolism, use of alcohol or medications, blood pressure, and age.

OSHA lists temperatures over 91 degrees as a moderate risk and advises to implement precautions that reduce heat stress. When the heat index ranges from 103 degrees and above, safety managers should be prepared to issue a heat stress alert and implement aggressive protective measures. Prone to heat stress Certain industries, occupations, and sports activities expose people to heat stress. These include but are not limited to military operations, moving companies, welding and metal forging, commercial laundries and bakeries, firefighters, boiler room workers, construction workers, and factory and automotive workers.

Outdoor operations in direct sunlight and hot weather, such as farming, construction, oil and gas well operations, and landscaping also increase the risk of heat-related illness in exposed workers.

Sporting and recreational events, such as 5K runs, marathons, fishing, even lying on the beach, can also induce heat stress, especially if the event takes place in a hot and humid climate.

Don’t forget that excessive heat may increase the risk of other injuries at the jobsite resulting from a worker’s sweaty palms, fogged-up safety glasses, and dizziness. Burns may also result when a worker accidentally comes in contact with hot surfaces or steam.

10 preventative measures

Take note of these preventative measures that every safety manager should practice to reduce the risk of heat stress.

1. Practice acclimatization, which is short work exposure early in the hot season, followed by gradual increases in intensity and duration.

2. Allow for frequent work breaks in an area that is cooler than the work environment.

3. Tell workers to drink plenty of water before, during, and after their shift and provide that water.

4. Tell workers to wear light-colored, loosefitting clothing.

5. Tell workers to avoid sugar, alcohol and caffeine, especially during heat waves.

6. Provide a hydration station with easy access to cool air or shade, water, fans, etc.

7. Implement a heat advisory program when a heat wave is forecasted or the heat index reaches 103 degrees. This can be as simple as putting an alert notice on a worker’s locker, at the time clock, or at the water cooler. Another tactic is to send a text to your workers with the heat advisory alert.

8. Train employees about heat stress, its risks and symptoms. OSHA has a Heat Stress Quick Card PDF that is available at https://www.osha.gov/Publications/osha3154.pdf.

9. Formulate a buddy system where workers help monitor each other for the symptoms of heat stress.

10. Invest in PPE cooling products, such as cooling towels and neck wraps, head bands, and head shades, ice-packet vests, wetted overgarments, heat-reflective aprons or suits, and moisture-wicking apparel.

Cooling towels and neck wraps

Cooling products today are high tech and help accelerate the evaporative cooling process. The advanced technology allows for workers to stay cool for an extended length of time. Plus, when the coolness wears off, the cooling towel, neck wrap, headband or head shade can be quickly reactivated by submersion in water for two to three minutes and then twirling in the air to reactive the cooling technology.

In addition to keeping the worker cool during the work day, cooling towels and neck wraps also offer a convenient method to wipe away sweat from the face and eyes.

When specifying cooling products, ask these questions:

  • Is the product made from materials that are anti-microbial?
  • If the product is a headband or head shade, does it have a stretch-fit design which aids in comfort and a custom fit?
  • If the product is a neck wrap, does it have a stretch loop feature that keeps the wrap secure around the neck?
  • How long does the intense cooling experience last before it needs to be reactivated again?

 

Cooling products come in a variety of colors and patterns so they keep you cool, and they look cool too. Make sure your heat stress combat kit includes cooling products. They are economical, easy to use, and effective at reducing the risk of heat stress.



SOURCE: ISHN

When the stress beast is a risk

June 09, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Mary Padron

 

It is a universal truth that almost everyone has experienced stress in their lives. The stress beast can dig its claws into people at work, at home, in their social lives and in their relationships, or while watching headline news about the latest terrorist attack.

The American Institute of Stress reports that “workplace stress is the No. 1 source of stress for American adults.” Although job stress impacts everyone differently, it will affect most employees eventually. Princeton Survey Research Associates says that “Three-fourths of employees believe the worker has more on-the-job stress than a generation ago.” Plus, Statisticbrain.com reports that annual cost to employers in stress related health care and missed work is close to $300 billion dollars.

According to NIOSH, “Job stress can be defined as the harmful physical and emotional responses that occur when the requirements of the job do not match the capabilities, resources, or needs of the worker. Job stress can lead to poor health and even injury.”

Work-related stress has serious consequences for the safety and health of the employee and for the health of the organization through increased absenteeism, high staff turnover, poor performance, and greater risk of worker injury.

Job stress can wreak havoc

Not all stress is bad. Healthy stress can help people face challenges, stay focused, or provide energy to tackle important projects. Healthy stress can help keep workers alert to prevent accidents or costly mistakes. However, when stress becomes overwhelming and excessive, it can negatively interfere with productivity, performance and safety at work.

Some of the physical symptoms of excessive stress include:

  • Insomnia—a double whammy because sleeping issues affect your ability to perform the next day, thereby increasing stress levels and fatigue
  • Stomach problems, nausea, and lack of appetite
  • Muscle tension in neck and lower back and teeth grinding
  • Headaches, including debilitating migraine headaches
  • High blood pressure or racing heart


Some of the emotional symptoms of excessive stress include:

  • Feelings of anger, depression, irritability, helplessness, and anxiousness
  • Short-tempered behavior
  • Lack of confidence in one’s ability and talents
  • Declining mental focus, which can lead to poor safety compliance, increased risk of injury on the job, and impaired decision making
  • Negative outlook for the future


If workplace stress is continuous and becomes chronic, it can lead to cardiovascular disease, musculoskeletal disorders, psychological disorders, workplace injury and impaired immune function.

10 common job stressors

Because of technological advances, globalization, sensory overload, and the repercussions of the 2008 recession, the nature of work has changed at breakneck speed. Although there are many situations that can lead to stress, here are ten job stressors leading the way in today’s workplace.

  1. The “always on” email and text culture
  2. Corporate downsizing and reorganization, which often requires workers to work more hours or wear too many hats
  3. Lean production schedules and heavy workloads
  4. Lack of family friendly policies
  5. Too many unrealistic “I want it now” deadlines
  6. Job insecurity
  7. Hectic and routine tasks that have little meaning
  8. Unpaid overtime
  9. The nature of the job itself, particularly if the worker has too much responsibility, or too little responsibility for his or her skillset, or is repeatedly exposed to harmful situations
  10. Working conditions, especially if there is too much exposure to noise, harmful chemicals, or risk of injury

How can workers cope better with stress?

As in any problematic situation, denial of the problem leads to more stress. It’s easy to see when a worker is not wearing his hard hat, his face shield, his hi-viz vest, or his hand protection. However, stress is intangible and is often difficult to identify.

Employees must take accountability for their stress by having open and honest discussions with safety professionals.  Another way for workers to combat stress is to share possible solutions with management that would help alleviate the stress, such as an alternative work schedule. Common alternatives include part-time, flextime, compressed workweeks, telecommuting and job-sharing, or requesting to report to a manager whose management style is motivational.

How can organizations help workers?

According to NIOSH, “Recent studies of so-called healthy organizations suggest that policies benefitting worker health also benefit the bottom line.  A healthy organization is defined as one that has low rates of illness, injury, and disability in its workforce and is also competitive in the marketplace.”

What are some of the organizational characteristics that lead to healthy, low-stress work and high levels of productivity?

  • Employee and management training on job stress
  • Open communication about how to eliminate job stressors
  • Recognition for good work performance
  • Career development opportunities
  • A culture that values the individual worker
  • Offering flextime and alternative work schedules
  • Engineering and administrative controls that improve working conditions
  • Implementation of a coordinated and integrated health, wellness, and safety program

How can safety professionals help prevent job stress?

A NIOSH study about workplace injuries reveals “there is a growing concern that stressful working conditions interfere with safe work practices and set the stage for injuries at work.” So today’s safety professional must protect workers from injury and harmful stress that can lead to unsafe work practices. Safety professionals need to bring awareness to upper management and HR about the negative impact stress can have on the safety of employees.

A workplace health and safety program

According to the CDC, a workplace health and safety program is a health promotion activity or organization-wide policy “designed to support healthy behaviors and improve health outcomes while at work.”

These programs can consist of education, medical screenings, on-site fitness programs or access to off-site fitness centers, and on-site safety training programs.

A workplace health and safety program has “the potential to significantly benefit employers, employees, their families, and communities,” says the CDC. “Integrating or coordinating occupational safety and health with health promotion may increase program participation and effectiveness and may also benefit the broader context of work organization and environment.”

If your employer does not yet offer a wellness or health promotion program in conjunction with your safety program, you may want to suggest implementing one. If you need information on how to start a program, visit the CDC website at https://www.cdc.gov/workplacehealthpromotion/model/index.html. Once implemented, watch worker morale, productivity, and compliance skyrocket as the stress beast is put back in its cage.



SOURCE: www.ishn.com

Radians R-Series Dual Mic Electronic Earmuff

June 15, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Mary Padron

MEMPHIS, TN —— Radians®, a leading manufacturer of high performance safety gear for shooters, hunters, and outdoor enthusiasts, recently introduced the R-Series™ R3200ECS electronic earmuff.

Ideal for hearing range commands, this premium earmuff features digital electronics that amplify low level sounds while compressing noises that exceed safe levels. Compression takes place when sounds surpass 85 decibels - the level at which hearing loss begins. After a discharge, the earmuff quickly allows normal sounds to be heard at safe hearing levels.

The R3200ECS (MSRP $49.99) was engineered with several features to aid in both comfort and performance, including:

    • Tapered, low profile ear cups, for more compatible use with shotguns and rifles
  • Compact folding feature for easy portability and storage
  • Two, independent microphones, right and left, to amplify low level sounds
  • Electronic circuitry ensures impulse noises (muzzle discharge) above unsafe levels are not amplified. "Compression" technology means the user's ability to hear surroundings is not interrupted, but is protected.
  • Soft ear cushions and a premium adjustable headband allow for a comfortable, custom fit to deliver a noise reduction rating (NRR) of 23db.
  • A 3.5mm jack and accessory cable (included) allow the user to easily connect a smart phone, radio or digital audio device for stereo playback
  • An LED "on" indicator light helps to prevent unintentional battery discharge
  • Operates with two AAA Alkaline batteries – not included.

 

For Radians complete product offering for shooters and hunters, download the Radians Sporting Goods Catalog.

Radians safety gear can be found at fine sporting goods outlets, range venues and e-commerce sites. All of Radians products are sold through authorized distributors. For more information, visit www.radians.com or call toll-free 1-877-723-4267 to speak to a sporting goods safety professional.



SOURCE: www.theoutdoorwire.com

Your Eyes Are Amazing—They Deserve Quality PPE

June 15, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Mary Padron


When vision is impaired, quality of life and the ability to work experience a drastic and unfortunate decline. Preventing eye injuries should be a top task on every safety professional's to-do list.

According to NIOSH, every day more than 2,000 workers in the United States suffer from an eye injury and require medical treatment. That's more than 700,000 Americans each year! Approximately one-third of those injuries require emergency room treatment and 100 of them result in one or more days away from work.

When Should Workers Wear Eye Protection?

Any worker or bystander who is working in, near, or passing through eye risk areas should wear protective eyewear. Please see the sidebar about OSHA's general requirements for employers to provide eye protection.

The type of eye protection to specify depends on the hazards in the workplace. If the job site has flying objects, particles, or dust, safety glasses with side protection (side shields) must be worn. Workers who work with or near chemicals should wear goggles with indirect vents. If hazardous radiation is a risk, workers must wear special-purpose safety glasses, goggles, faceshields, or helmets designed for that task.

Common causes for eye injuries include:

  • Flying objects from equipment operation (bits of metal, glass, wood, etc.)
  • Chemical splash
  • Tools
  • Particles and dust
  • Acids or caustic liquids
  • Harmful radiation
  • Falling objects when reaching for items on tall shelves

Three Things That Help to Prevent Eye Injuries

1. Understand and identify the safety risks at work.
Identify the work activities that could put your employees' or guests' eyes at risk. Risk is the probability that a person will be harmed if exposed to a hazard, such as the hazards listed above. Risks are usually rated:

  • low for minimal risk
  • medium for minor or serious risks that aren’t likely to occur
  • high for unacceptable risks that are likely to occur


Organizations should always consider ways to eliminate or modify unacceptable vision risks.

Manufacturers often have product managers who specialize in specific protection categories, such as eye safety. These product managers, or product champions, often will consult with safety professionals to help them understand and identify the safety risks and dangers at their job site.

2. Control the hazard by elimination, engineering controls, administrative controls, or through the use of the appropriate PPE.
Elimination or substitution of the hazard is the most effective method for removing a hazard. For example, can I use a water-based chemical that is not harmful instead of a solvent-based chemical that could damage a worker’s vision? Unfortunately, elimination or substitution is often not possible or practical.

Engineering controls are another effective method for reducing worker exposure to hazards. They include designs or modifications to plants, warehouses, equipment, ventilation systems, and workstations to make these areas safer or more ergonomic.

Administrative controls change the way the work is done to achieve a safer outcome, including timing of work, policies, rules, work practices, operating procedures, etc.

Personal protective equipment provides protection against hazards. It should be used when other safety controls are not practical or be used in addition to other controls. For example, to help prevent eye injury, make sure your employees are wearing ANSI Z87+ impact resistant eyewear.

3. Choose safety glasses with the ANSI marking of "Z87+" for your workers.
ANSI/ISEA Z87.1-2015, American National Standard for Occupational and Educational Personal Eye and Face Protection Devices, sets forth criteria related to the general requirements, testing, permanent marking, selection, care, and use of protectors to minimize the occurrence and severity or prevention of injuries from such hazards as impact, non-ionizing radiation, and liquid splash exposures in occupational and educational environments, including, but not limited to, machinery operations, material welding and cutting, chemical handling, and assembly operations.

Certain hazardous exposures are not covered in this standard. These include, but are not limited to: bloodborne pathogens, X-rays, high energy particulate radiation, microwaves, radio-frequency radiation lasers, masers, and sports and recreation.

ANSI Z87.1-2015 provides clarifications to markings on lenses and frames, and seeing that "+" mark on your lenses and frames means the glasses or goggles you're about to wear have been tested for impact resistance and found satisfactory. The "Z87+" marking is like a seal of approval indicating high-velocity impact, and "Z87" alone means basic impact.

What Are the PPE Options for Eye Protection?

There are many different kinds of PPE that provide eye protection. These include safety eyewear, goggles, side shields, brow guards, and eyewash stations, all of which play a prominent role in preventing injury and vision impairment.  However, let's take a closer look at safety eyewear because it is one of the primary PPE segments.

Safety eyewear
Safety glasses have evolved from rather mundane styles to super stylish eyewear that can be used after the workday is over. Safety eyewear is available with:

  • Anti-fog coatings that are either water based or solvent based to prevent fogged glasses, which is a common eyewear complaint
  • Scratch- and abrasion-resistant coatings
  • De-centered lenses for enhanced optimal clarity
  • Polarized lenses to reduce glare
  • HD technology for optical clarity
  • UV protection to protect against the sun’s harmful rays
  • A variety of tints to reduce glare, screen hazardous radiation, or to provide other task specific filtration
  • Filter lenses with a shade number for protection from radiant energy (Note: The shade number indicates the intensity of light radiation that is allowed to pass through a filter lens to one’s eyes. Therefore, the higher the shade number, the darker the filter and the less light radiation that will pass through the lens.)
  • RX and bifocal
  • Over-the-Glass (OTG) to use with prescription eyewear
  • Comfort features, such as rubber nose pieces and temples for a secure and comfortable fit all day long

 

There are many things to consider when specifying eye protection for your job site:

  • Comfort. Many end users are required to wear their eyewear for extended periods of time, so comfort is a critical issue. When a safety glass is comfortable to wear, the worker is more willing to wear it on a regular basis.
  • Style/fashion. Because fashion tends to change rather quickly, market participants need to follow the trends and be ready to adjust their product offerings on short notice. A trend to entice end users to wear their eyewear is to offer logo and branded items. Some leading PPE manufacturers offer in-house custom pad printing to brand safety eyewear.
  • Price. Price influences purchases and budgets. Many manufacturers offer value, performance, and premium brands to satisfy economic and style demands.
  • Protection. The user wants the product to provide the maximum amount of protection from flying debris and hazards, as well as protect the eye from damaging UV rays.
  • Specific applications. The right lens color, coatings, and eyewear styles used in the proper job application can enhance the performance and productivity of the user.
  • Anti-fog coatings. Anti-fog coatings are either water based (hydrophilic) or solvent based (hydrophobic). The coating is either built into the lens for long-term use and durability or it is a surface coating. If the coating is not built into the lens, the anti-fog coating becomes quickly compromised after multiple cleanings or exposure to abrasion. Water-based coatings are non-toxic and non-flammable, unlike solvent-based coatings, which can be highly toxic. Keep in mind that a good anti-fog solution increases usage of personal protective eyewear, especially since fogged eyewear is the number one job site complaint.

Our Eyes Deserve Quality PPE

Sustaining an eye injury, especially one that leads to permanent vision loss, can have devastating outcomes for the injured worker. Our eyes are truly amazing, and our sight is one of the most developed senses in humans. When vision is impaired, the quality of life and the ability to work experience a drastic and unfortunate decline. Therefore, preventing eye injuries should be a top task on every safety professional's to-do list. Prevent Blindness America, the nation's leading volunteer eye health and safety organization, says that "90% of all workplace eye injuries can be avoided by using proper safety eyewear."



SOURCE: www.ohsonline.com

[12 3 4 5  >>  

Contact

5305 Distriplex Farms Drive
Memphis, TN 38141

Toll Free 877-723-4267
Phone 901-388-7776
Fax 901-266-2558

 

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.