Category: Manufacturing

Manufacturing Day 2020: Staying Safer in 2020

National Manufacturing Day 2020 is a day devoted to educating the public about manufacturing and manufacturers. About the Manufacturing Sector Manufacturing is the fourth largest industrial sector in the United States, currently employing about 15.6 million Americans, [1] representing aabout 11% of the gross domestic product. [2] The White House has declared manufacturing to be Read More >

Posted on by Gary A. Roth, MS, PhD and LCDR Adrienne Eastlake, MS, RS/REHS3 Comments

World Cancer Day 2020 – Reflecting on a Decade of NIOSH Cancer Research

February 4th, 2020 is World Cancer Day, and we are reflecting on the role of the occupational cancer research being done at the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) in reducing the burden of cancer worldwide. Cancer develops as a result of the body losing its ability to control the growth and spread Read More >

Posted on by Raquel Velazquez-Kronen, Ph.D.; and Jasmine Nelson, B.S.6 Comments

Improving Programs to Control Hazardous Energy: New website offers tools and templates

A new website from the National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA) Manufacturing Sector Council features ways in which businesses and companies can safeguard employees from the release of hazardous energy (any source of electrical, mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, chemical, thermal, or other energy) during service and maintenance activities. The new website features a resource guide with step-by-step Read More >

Posted on by Richard S. Current, PE; Thais C. Morata, PhD; Frank Renshaw, PhD; Susan Afanuh, MA; and Nura Sadeghpour, MPH9 Comments

Safe-in-Sound Award Celebrates 10 Years and New Partner

In 2008, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and the National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA) created the Safe-in-Sound Excellence in Hearing Loss Prevention Award™ to recognize organizations that document measurable achievements in hearing loss prevention. Over the past 10 years we have given out 10 Excellence Awards and 13 Innovation Awards. In Read More >

Posted on by Thais C. Morata, PhD3 Comments

Ototoxicant Chemicals and Workplace Hearing Loss

  Since the 19th century, many therapeutic drugs have been known to affect hearing. Known as ototoxic drugs, many are used today in clinical situations despite these negative side effects because they are effective in treating serious, sometimes life-threatening conditions. Research has shown that exposure to certain chemicals in the workplace may also negatively affect Read More >

Posted on by Thais C. Morata, PhD and Chuck Kardous, MS, PE11 Comments

Help Us Redesign the NIOSH Pocket Guide

The NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards (NPG) celebrates its 40th anniversary in 2018. The guide continues to be the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health’s (NIOSH) most popular document. It provides descriptive information such as recommendations for exposure limits, protective clothing, and first aid measures for 677 chemicals commonly found in the work Read More >

Posted on by Naomi Hudson, Dr.P.H, and Donna Van Bogaert, Ph.D. 74 Comments

N95 Day 2017: When to think Beyond the N95 FFR

Buckle your seat belts! Put on your high-speed safety gear! We’re about to blast off on a journey to explore the N95 respirator … and beyond. It’s N95 Day, and that means we are focusing on respiratory protection, and invite you to do the same. We’ll make it easy. NIOSH and our N95 Day partners Read More >

Posted on by Margaret Sietsema, PhD, and Jaclyn Krah Cichowicz, MA 9 Comments

Introducing the Hearing Loss Prevention Program evaluation checklist

Noise-induced hearing loss continues to be one of the most common occupational disorders, even in workplaces where workers are protected by hearing loss prevention programs (HLPPs). Although standards and regulations vary by country, virtually all hearing loss prevention programs require several elements: the measurement of noise exposures; the implementation of noise controls to reduce noise Read More >

Posted on by Rick Neitzel, PhD, CIH, FAIHA; Peter Rabinowitz, MD, MPH; Linda Cantley, MS; and Chuck Kardous, MS, PE 1 Comment

Occupational Exposure to Bisphenol A (BPA) in U.S. Manufacturing Companies

You may have seen water bottles labeled “BPA Free” or heard that certain foods contain BPA. BPA (or bisphenol A) has been in the news over the past several years. BPA is weakly estrogenic; that is, BPA may mimic some of the hormone-like effects of estrogen.  BPA is used primarily in making polycarbonate plastic and Read More >

Posted on by Cynthia Hines, MS, CIH9 Comments

Nonstandard Work Arrangements

Who is looking out for workers in nonstandard work arrangements? As the prevalence of nonstandard work arrangements (such as temporary agency, contract, and “gig” arrangements) rises, so do concerns about workplace safety and health among this workforce. A recent article, “Nonstandard work arrangements and worker health and safety” published in the American Journal of Industrial Read More >

Posted on by John Howard, MD17 Comments

Wearable Exoskeletons to Reduce Physical Load at Work

Robotic-like suits which provide powered assist and increase human strength may conjure thoughts of sci-fi and superhero film genres. But these wearable exoskeleton devices are now a reality and the market for their applications in the workplace is projected to increase significantly in the next five years.  As with any technologic innovation some of the Read More >

Posted on by Brian D. Lowe, PhD, CPE; Robert B. Dick, PhD, Captain USPHS (Ret.); Stephen Hudock, PhD, CSP; and Thomas Bobick, PhD, CSP, CPE 15 Comments

A Robot May Not Injure a Worker: Working safely with robots

  Robots are used in increasing numbers in the workplace and in society in general. As their numbers and capabilities increase, observers have urged that scientists, engineers, and policymakers explore the implications of robotics for society, to ensure that the rise of robots will not spell “doom for humanity” as some critics have warned [1]. Read More >

Posted on by Vladimir Murashov, PhD; Frank Hearl, PE; and John Howard, M.D.153 Comments

FACE Investigation Documents Factors Contributing to a Worker’s Death Inside Pressure Cooker

  The headlines a few weeks ago were alarming. The tragic death of a worker in a 270-degree oven three years ago led to a $6 million agreement to settle criminal charges in what Los Angeles District Attorney Jackie Lacey said was the largest payout in a California workplace death (see news report). The California Read More >

Posted on by Robert Harrison, MD, and Laura Styles, MPH2 Comments

Addressing the Hazards of Temporary Employment

A Joint Session of the NORA Manufacturing Sector and Services Sector Councils Factors such as fluctuations in the economy, changing social habits and access to technology have boosted a rapid growth in temporary work arrangements [Luo,T]. Under many names–temporary workers, contingent workers, contract workers, long-term temps, workers in dual employer situations, on-demand freelance–these workers seem Read More >

Posted on by Cheryl F. Estill, Thais Morata,Terri Schnorr, Barbara Materna7 Comments

High Prevalence of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome among Poultry Workers

Musculoskeletal disorders (MSD) of the upper extremities among poultry processing employees are well documented (Lipscomb et al. 2008; Cartwright et al. 2012). The combination of highly repetitive tasks, forceful movements and working in cold temperatures can increase risk for MSDs such as carpal tunnel syndrome, a disabling medical condition affecting the hands and wrists. In Read More >

Posted on by Jessica Ramsey, MS, CPE and Kristin Musolin, DO, MS10 Comments

First, Do No Harm: Temporary Threshold Shift Screening Is Not Worth the Risk

  Recently, a study by Dr. Hanns Moshammer and colleagues on “The Early Prognosis of Noise-Induced Hearing Loss” garnered national media attention.[1] Their research, published in Occupational and Environmental Medicine, [2] recommended routine implementation of a temporary threshold shift (TTS) screening test to identify workers particularly at risk of developing noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) from Read More >

Posted on by Christa L. Themann, MA, CCC-A9 Comments

Buy Quiet Update

Several years ago NIOSH started the planning process for a “buy quiet” initiative to encourage companies to purchase or rent quieter machinery and tools to reduce worker noise exposure. This initiative also aimed to provide information on equipment noise levels and promote manufacturers to design quieter equipment. NIOSH is now pleased to announce the official Read More >

Posted on by Holly Poynter, MPH; Trudi McCleery, MPH; and CAPT Charles S. Hayden, MS, PE12 Comments

A Wrench in the Gear: Lockout/tagout in the food industry

The food manufacturing industry includes animal slaughtering as well as the processing and packaging of meat, dairy, fruit, vegetable, grain, seafood, beverages, and bakery products. The industry employs nearly 1.5 million workers.1 Work in food manufacturing is typically fast-paced and workers can face exposure to hazards such as slips trips and falls, musculoskeletal disorders, and Read More >

Posted on by Jim Harris, Ph.D., P.E. ; Susan Afanuh, MA; Frank Renshaw, Ph.D., CIH, CSP; David L. Parker, MD, MPH; Theodore Braun, MBA; Thomas Cunningham, PhD 166 Comments

A Voice in the Wilderness: Alice Hamilton and the Illinois Survey

Today, on Workers Memorial Day we remember those who died from work-related causes and take stock of what we still need to accomplish to reduce the toll of workplace injury, disease, and death. As we do this, it may be helpful to look back at how far we have come and remember one woman in Read More >

Posted on by Leslie Nickels, PhD, MEd7 Comments

Silica Hazards from Engineered Stone Countertops

A new engineered stone countertop product known as “quartz surfacing,” was created in the late 1980s by combining quartz aggregate with resins to create a product for use in home building and home improvement.  Manufacturing of this material, including products such as CaesarStone™, Silestone™, Zodiaq™, or Cambria™ is a fast growing industry.  First made in Read More >

Posted on by Karen Worthington, MS, RN, COHN-S; Margaret Filios, SM, RN; Mary Jo Reilly, MS; Robert Harrison, MD, MPH; and Kenneth D. Rosenman, MD 59 Comments