NIOSH Science Blog Posts

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

Work Songs

  The 2015 American Music Awards air this Sunday, November 22nd (8 pm EST in case you’re interested). Why is NIOSH blogging about this you may ask? Well, we’ve blogged about workplace safety and health themes in: movies twice (three times if you count the recent blog on James Bond’s occupational hazards), books, the theater, Read More >

Posted on by Julie Tisdale Pardi, MA 19 Comments

Factors Associated with Poor Control of 9/11-related Asthma

  Many people who were exposed to dust and fumes during the September 11, 2001 World Trade Center terrorist attacks developed asthma. Although asthma is a chronic illness, symptoms can be prevented with medications and avoidance of triggers. However, many factors, including co-existing medical conditions, can make it difficult to keep asthma symptoms under control. Read More >

Posted on by Hannah Jordan, MD, MPH12 Comments

Workplace Medical Mystery Solved: Fire Training Officer Lands in Hospital with a Distressing Lung X-Ray

Bob, an experienced firefighter and trainer started to experience chest pain, shortness of breath, and a cough with blood following a firefighter training that he set up and led. At the emergency room, the doctor ruled out a blood clot in his lungs. However, an x-ray did show Bob had small nodules in his lungs. Read More >

Posted on by Stephanie Stevens, MA1 Comment

James Bond Exposed…To 50 Years of Occupational Hazards

Your heart may race while your eyes follow the iconic figure that is James Bond as he holds it together to do his job: driving at high speed down alleyways, under railway crossings, and often through explosive fire and other obstructions. You may wonder how he will survive driving a car that has just been Read More >

Posted on by Nura Sadeghpour, MPH 16 Comments

Workplace Medical Mystery: Fire Training Officer Lands in Hospital with a Distressing Lung X-Ray

Bob was an experienced firefighter. He worked for 17 years as a member of his city’s fire suppression team working his way up to fire captain. After 5 years as captain, Bob decided to transition to the role of fire training officer where he could work five 8-hour shifts per week instead of 24 hour Read More >

Posted on by Stephanie Stevens, MA12 Comments

“Safety Matters” —Bringing Work Safety and Health to the Classroom

Every day, young workers face injury, illness and even death on the job. Data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics show that about 1.5 million teenagers from 15 through 17 years old work in the United States. Studies show that nearly 8 of 10 high school students in the United States work at some Read More >

Posted on by Rebecca Guerin, MA; Andrea Okun, DrPH; Deborah Hornback, MS; and Christopher Storms7 Comments

Advancing Worker Well-being Across the Working Life: NIOSH’s New Center for Productive Aging & Work

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, by 2020, American workers 55 years or older will increase by almost 10 million, or at a rate of 33.5%. In addition, by 2020, most workplaces will have five generations working side by side. An aging workforce means having to think about how workers and organizations address Read More >

Posted on by James Grosch, PhD; Juliann Scholl, PhD; and Bermang Ortiz, BA4 Comments

Help for Small Businesses

  New businesses start with an idea, an opportunity, and a problem to solve. The path to profitability crystalizes as a business plan emerges. Then come the paperwork and licensing. New business owners must attend to innumerable tasks: negotiate with suppliers, trim costs, manage employees, push for revenue, secure capital, deliver to clients, and navigate Read More >

Posted on by Garrett Burnett, MS, MBA and Thomas Cunningham, PhD 5 Comments

New Research Identifies 5 Best Practices for Keeping Contractors Safe

  Creating a culture of safety isn’t just meant for full-time employees of an organization. It requires the involvement all workers whether full-time, temporary or contract and the diligence of the companies or organizations where their work occurs. Contractor safety management is extremely relevant in our increasingly global and complex world that involves work in Read More >

Posted on by Joy Inouye19 Comments

#PlanAhead for Drive Safely Work Week 2015

  How do you plan to celebrate Drive Safely Work Week? Don’t know? Haven’t thought about it yet? Well, you are in luck. This year, we are posting our blog in advance of the annual observance that encourages safe driving on and off the job (October 5-9, 2015) to give you plenty of time to Read More >

Posted on by Rebecca Olsavsky, MS and Stephanie Pratt, PhD 2 Comments

A Partnership: NIOSH and Mexican Consulates help support the health and safety of workers

  This is the fourth in a series of blogs describing the development and purpose of the Protéjase educational materials. These materials were created as part of NIOSH’s mission to conduct research and determine effective ways of delivering occupational safety and health information. Organizations that serve Spanish-speaking immigrant workers can use these materials to encourage Read More >

Posted on by Mike Flynn, Pietra Check, Amy Filko, Nura Sadeghpour4 Comments

Partnership Increases Capacity in Agricultural Safety on the Navajo Nation

Farming and ranching are important to the livelihood and culture of the Navajo Nation. Nearly all families living on the 27, 000 square mile reservation are involved in agriculture.1 Many of them use traditional farming practices that do not include powered machinery. However, an increasing number of farmers are changing to cash crops and larger-scale Read More >

Posted on by Alyssa Llamas, BS; María Sofía Lioce, M.D., M.S.; and Viji Potula, Ph.D.1 Comment

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

Illustrating the Point: Choosing the right ARTIST for the message

As an artist, please provide one detailed and emotive illustration that captures this message: “You have come to this country looking for a better future. You also want to show that you are hardworking. You have overcome great obstacles to give your family a better life.”  It may be surprising that from these few words Read More >

Posted on by Nura Sadeghpour, Pietra Check, Amy Filko, and Mike Flynn10 Comments

One Size Does Not Fit All

  When your safety and your life depends on it, you need your equipment to fit properly. This is especially true in the workplace. Improper fit may prevent workers from performing their job duties safely and effectively. If your respirator does not seal properly to your face, if your gloves are too big, if your seatbelt Read More >

Posted on by Hongwei Hsiao, PhD4 Comments

NIOSH Travel Health and Safety Resource Kit for Workers with International Assignments

Travel Internationally for Work? Tell us what you think. Ever looked at international travel resources on the web? There are an incredible number. Most are intended for leisure travel and not for work-related travel, and most are overwhelming in detail. In addition to the many logistics involved in making foreign travel a pleasant and successful Read More >

Posted on by L. Casey Chosewood, MD, MPH; John Gibbins, DVM, MPH; Margaret Kitt, MD; Leslie Nickels, PhD, Med; John Piacentino, MD, MPH; Donna Van Bogaert, PhD; and Kristin Yeoman, MD 15 Comments

Health Effects from 9/11: Lessons Learned

  Today, as the world remembers the terrorist attacks of 9/11 we must also remember that tens of thousands of responders and survivors of the disaster continue to suffer adverse health effects every day. Multiple types of toxic exposures were encountered by the responders, clean-up personnel and residents of the surrounding community. A new Continuing Read More >

Posted on by Max Lum, Ed.D., MPA15 Comments

Illustrating the Point: Choosing the right ART for the message

If you wanted to deliver a series of public health messages to people gathered at a busy Consulate (think Saturday at the DMV), or at another trusted community organization, how would you do it? We investigated the answer to that question specifically for a Spanish-speaking immigrant worker population, and specifically for conveying information designed to Read More >

Posted on by Amy Filko, Pietra Check, Mike Flynn, Nura Sadeghpour8 Comments

Labor Day Message from NIOSH Director, John Howard, M.D.

  Labor Day is a time to reflect upon and honor the contribution by American workers to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country. First celebrated in New York City in 1882, Labor Day became an official federal holiday in 1894. While the character of the celebrations has changed over time, Labor Day today Read More >

Posted on by John Howard, M.D.2 Comments