Maryland employees should be aware that, on Aug. 7, OSHA warned that using an emergency eyewash station that has not been properly maintained could lead to infection. These eyewash stations may be found in workplaces where corrosive chemicals are used, in research laboratories that deal with HIV and HBV and in medical facilities.
Maryland residents may have heard about the purported health risks associated with prolonged exposure to chemicals found in nail salons. New research has linked such chemicals to health issues such as asthma, respiratory disease, miscarriages and cancer. The threat is so concerning that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued emergency regulations protecting nail salon workers in May after The New York Times published a series of articles highlighting the dangers of the chemicals.
Most Maryland residents will likely associate workplace injuries with accidents such as falls and explosions, but they can sometimes be caused by contact with animals. The most common form of animal-related injuries suffered by workers are insect or snake bites, but those who work in close contact with larger creatures such as cattle or horses may sometimes suffer broken bones or concussions.
Highway officials in Maryland have warned motorists to be vigilant as they travel in work zones. With the large amount of construction and maintenance crews on the roadways, drivers should be on the lookout for orange cones and barrels. While these signs serve to protect employees, their purpose is also to keep drivers and passengers safe.
On a construction site, Maryland workers may need to be aware that there are two types of accidents that may occur. A struck incident occurs when the impact of an object causes injury to a worker, but a caught incident occurs when a worker becomes stuck or crushed between objects and suffers injury.
As Maryland workers may know, exposure to heat may have an effect on a person's health. Employers should inform workers about the problems associated with heat exposure and alert workers to the signs and symptoms. In addition, it is important to know what to do if heat exposure causes health problems and structure a plan to prevent or deal with working in a hot environment.
Fall hazards continue to be a major risk faced by Maryland construction workers. This is especially true on residential work sites where the workers may be framing in a home's walls. While performing this task, workers face the risk that they they could fall from the wall and hurt themselves on the ground below or land on other dangerous items, like tools or pieces of wood. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has set out a few guidelines on how construction companies can protect workers and reduce this risk.
Workers in Maryland may have been affected by the loss of sleep after the daylight saving time change on March 8. While many people complain about having less time to sleep before work, research shows that the lost hour of sleep increases the likelihood of workplace injuries. According to the National Sleep Foundation, most workers need a few days to fully adjust to the time change.
Maryland employees may be interested in some information about one of the more common workplace injuries on construction sites: nail gun injuries. One government safety agency shows that these injuries may be preventable when the appropriate safety measures are taken.
As many Maryland workers know, on Feb. 18, two governmental agencies issued an alert concerning crystalline silica exposure. This follows the release of international reports showing the cumulative effects of such exposure.