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NIOSH Celebrates National Farm Safety and Health Week

Categories: Agriculture, Forestry, and Fishing

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September 21-27, 2014, is National Farm Safety and Health Week. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) marks this year’s theme, Safety Counts: Protecting What Matters, by announcing the new Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing directory page.

The new page provides a one-stop entry to all of NIOSH’s agriculture, forestry and fishing resources, making it easier than ever to access data, information, and publications for research and action. The directory page is coordinated by the Office of Agriculture Safety and Health (OASH) in the NIOSH Director’s Office. OASH provides leadership to prevent work-related injuries and illnesses among the nation’s agriculture, forestry and fishing workers. OASH sets strategic directions for, supports, and monitors and reports progress on safety and health research and public health practice activities, both intramural and extramural. OASH also bridges internal and external activities by facilitating research integration, partnership development, and research to practice.

Preventing Skin Cancer

Categories: Agriculture, Forestry, and Fishing, Cancer, Construction, Oil and Gas, Outdoor Work, Young Workers

sunAs the nation’s doctor, I recently launched a Call to Action to Prevent Skin Cancer to address the rising rates of skin cancer in the U.S. While nearly 5 million people are treated for skin cancer each year in the U.S., with an annual cost of $8.1 billion, most cases are preventable. Although people with lighter skin are at higher risk, anyone can get skin cancer—and it can be disfiguring, even deadly. Sunburned and even tanned skin is damaged skin that can lead to skin cancer. That’s why this message is extremely important for individuals whose jobs require them to work outdoors.

The National Tractor Safety Coalition: Taking a new systems-approach to a well-known problem

Categories: Agriculture, Forestry, and Fishing, Motor Vehicle Safety

The agriculture industry is widely recognized for its high work-related fatal injury rates, which are estimated to be 20.2 deaths per 100,000 workers (compared to 3.2 per 100,000 workers for all workers).[i] Tractor overturns are the most frequent cause of farm fatalities, yet they can be readily addressed with the presence of a roll-bar and seatbelt (referred to as a rollover protective structure system or ROPS).[ii] Unfortunately, roughly 40% of U.S. tractors lack these protective devices. Older farmers, part-time farmers, and low-income farms are most frequently lacking ROPS protection.[iii]

Adjusting to Work in the Heat: Why Acclimatization Matters

Categories: Agriculture, Forestry, and Fishing, Construction, Outdoor Work

Heat stress infographic

Click for the full infograpic

Acclimatization is important in keeping your workforce safe and well as temperatures rise. This natural adaptation to the heat takes time, and from a management perspective, it may require careful planning.

Make acclimatization part of your plan

A good heat illness prevention plan takes into account the need for more breaks, a cool place to rest, the availability of fluids, and the careful allotment of time for a worker to become fully adjusted or acclimatized to the heat. It will need to be flexible based on the intensity of the heat, the level of humidity, the workers’ experience on the job, and the workers’ physical fitness.

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