Telecommuting growing in popularity as workplaces change

Among employer cost-savings through telecommuting are less space to rent, buy or needed for expansion; reduced use of utilities; less need for office supplies and in-office copiers, desks, computers, fax machines, and other equipment; reduced janitorial services; and reductions in virtually every other facility-focused item. Another benefit to employers: fewer OSHA compliance issues. Fed-OSHA won’t […]

Feds say Arizona commission improperly slashes workplace safety penalties

Fed-OSHA says the Industrial Commission of Arizona is arbitrarily and improperly reducing employers’ penalties for safety violations and, in doing so, undermining the deterrent power of such penalties. The Industrial Commission oversees ADOSH and reviews its recommended penalties over $2,500. An investigation last year found that the commission routinely reduces penalties and reclassifies violations, often […]

Maine: Portland street reopened after chemical spill

City officials in Portland, Maine say about 25 gallons of a chemical used in spray foam insulation spilled on the street Wednesday morning. As of late Wednesday morning, there were no reports of anyone coming in contact with the polymer liquid. The spill reportedly occurred when a 55-gallon drum in the back of a truck […]

Brooklyn construction firm criminally charged in employee death

The owner of a Brooklyn, New York construction company has been indicted on manslaughter charges related to the death of an 18-year-old worker in September 2015 when a wall collapsed during excavation work around an existing cellar. Several workers reportedly warned the 47-year-old contractor that the site wasn’t safe because adjacent walls were unstable. The […]

Marijuana farm employees face numerous health hazards: NIOSH

NIOSH recently published the results of a potential hazards evaluation associated with the harvesting and processing of cannabis at a Washington state outdoor organic farm. Employers should be concerned about the risks for musculoskeletal disorders, as well as dermal contact exposures. Lexology

Northwest Iowa energy company contests citation

Renewable energy company Big Ox Energy will contest at least one Fed-OSHA penalty issued after an investigation of its South Sioux City, Iowa plant, according to an agency spokesman. Fed-OSHA recently cited the company with six serious violations and issued penalties totaling more than $50,000. The investigation began in mid-October when a contractor at the […]