Obama’s offshore drilling regulator says new safety rules are on the way
The government is poised to propose new rules that aim to boost the safety of offshore drilling and tighten standards for emergency equipment guarding sub-sea wells, a top regulator said today. The looming changes will build on already broad changes that the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement has imposed since last year’s Gulf oil spill, said the agency director, Michael Bromwich, in a speech before the World National Oil Companies Congress in London today.
Ruling limits access to porn actor’s HIV records
State workplace safety officials don’t have a right to access the medical records of porn actors who contract HIV on the job because it violates their right to medical privacy, according to an Alameda County Superior Court ruling. State laws that give health officials a right to the information in order to track outbreaks don’t extend to the Division of Occupational Safety and Health, known as Cal/OSHA, according to the June 14 ruling.
New ILO convention gives domestic workers historic labor rights
Labor groups around the world celebrated last Thursday after the United Nations’ International Labour Organization adopted a historic treaty that increases protections for millions of domestic workers. Household service employees, many of whom are migrant women or girls from underprivileged areas, are now provided fundamental labor rights that were previously not guaranteed due to the nature of their informal work.
Strained Hyatt workers continue to push for fair negotiations
How can seven housekeepers keep up with the 2,019 rooms at the Hyatt Regency hotel during their shift? They can’t—that’s why they went on strike. Union cooks, bellmen, dishwashers, housekeepers and other Hyatt workers woke up at 4 a.m. Monday, June 20, to picket outside three Hyatt locations in a one-day strike after more than 20 months of negotiation with the company.
High temperatures has OSHA, oil firms focusing on heat awareness
With the Permian Basin enduring a string of triple-digit temperatures, there is a focus among oil and gas companies on how to work outdoors safely. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration currently has a focus on heat, officials report, with a Regional Emphasis Program on its Region VI, which encompasses Texas, New Mexico, Arkansas, Louisiana and Oklahoma.
More birth defects in mountaintop removal mining areas
Babies born in West Virginia regions where mountaintop removal mining takes place suffer from higher rates of birth defects than those born in non-mining regions.
Transocean: BP decisions led to Gulf oil spill
An internal investigation by the owner of the rig that exploded in the Gulf of Mexico last year largely blames oil giant BP for the disaster. The Swiss firm says many of the decisions were made by well owner BP in the two weeks before the incident.
Cellphone, laptop distractions blamed in deadly boat crash
The boating crash near Philadelphia last year that killed two Hungarian tourists has been blamed mainly on a tugboat officer who wasn’t paying attention to safety because he was distracted by his cellphone and laptop computer. The chair of the National Transportation Safety Board, Deborah Hersman, called the July, 2010, incident on the Delaware River “another example of the deadliness of distractions.”
OSHA cites company $168,000 for worker death in tragic Pennsylvania construction trench collapse
Government regulators have fined a company for safety violations after investigating the collapse of a trench at a Newberry Township construction site that killed one worker and injured another.
No job is better than a bad job
A study out of Australia found that people in poor quality jobs (those with high demands, low control over decision making, high job insecurity and an effort-reward imbalance) had more adverse effects on mental health than being unemployed. Yep, a crappy job can be harder than no job at all.