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Court Rules Against Industry in Challenge to the Silica Standard

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Friday, December 22, 2017

Today, the D.C. Circuit Court rejected all the industry challenges to OSHA's new silica standard. The standard lowers the permissible exposure limit to respirable crystalline silica in the workplace. The legal challenge, led by the US Chamber of Commerce, asked the court to review five issues related to the rule including whether "substantial evidence" supported OSHA's claim that silica exposure is dangerous and whether the rule is economically and/or technically feasible for particular industries. The court rejected all of the arguments presented by the Chamber and other industry groups. 

While the court ruled against the industry challenges, it did order the Department of Labor to review and further explain the omission of a provision to allow doctors to recommend pulling exposed workers off jobs. 

To read the decision click here

Tags:  osha  Respirable Crystalline Silica  silica 

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Trump Administration Unveils S&H Agenda for 2018

Posted By Mark Ellis, Friday, December 15, 2017

Yesterday the Trump administration released the Fall 2017 Unified Agenda of Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions (Regulatory Agenda or Agenda).  The current Regulatory Agenda builds on regulatory/deregulatory actions taken by the Trump Administration in July 2017.  It contains a completely revised portal page (https://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/eAgendaMain) which provides highlights of overall changes the Trump Administration is pursuing in the regulatory space.  The Agenda also contains an introduction to the Fall 2017 Regulatory Plan by the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA).  OIRA is the White House clearinghouse for agency regulatory actions.  The three-page document highlights the Trump Administration's approach to Executive Branch implementation of law through the regulatory process (https://www.reginfo.gov/public/jsp/eAgenda/StaticContent/201710/VPStatement.pdf).

Executive Order 12866 requires the semiannual publication of an agenda of regulations that contains a listing of all the regulations the Department of Labor expects to have under active consideration for promulgation, proposal, or review during the coming one-year period.  MSHA has five initiatives it intends to have under active consideration in the coming year.  MSHA is expected to continue to hold the rulemaking record open on its Request for Information on exposure of underground miners to diesel exhaust through a regulatory action taken in January 2018.  MSHA is expected to issue a first-ever Request for Information on its existing petitions for modification process.  That action is slated for April 2018.  The Final Rule on Examination of Working Places in Metal and Nonmetal Mines will take effect on June 2, 2018.

Another part of the Agenda identifies regulatory initiatives that are long-term initiatives.  Notably, MSHA's Respirable Crystalline Silica regulatory initiative is listed as "Next Action Undetermined," as is the case for Proximity Detection Systems for Mobile Machines in Underground Mines. 


Tags:  MSHA  OSHA  regulations  regulatory agenda 

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Senate Committee to Vote on Nominee to lead OSHA

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Friday, December 8, 2017
The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) has scheduled the confirmation vote on Scott Mugno, the FedEx safety executive tapped by the Trump administration's to lead OSHA, for Monday December 13th. The HELP Committee convened Scott Mugno's confirmation hearing on Tuesday, December 5th. The Committee's questions and concerns largely split along party lines, following the trend of other confirmation hearings. If the Committee votes to confirm Scott Mugno to head OSHA, he will join the rest of President Trump's nominees currently awaiting a full Senate vote for confirmation.  Numerous important positions remain unfilled while the nominees await a floor vote, including 4 positions at the EPA. As the year winds down, it is anticipated that many of these nominees will be confirmed in a large package. IMA-NA is looking forward to the Administration continuing to staff the Departments and Agencies to ensure the government can function at the level it needs to. 

Tags:  confirmation  DOL  labor  OSHA  Senate 

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Scott Mugno to Head OSHA

Posted By Mark Ellis, Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Last week President Trump announced his intention to nominate Scott Mugno to be Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health.  According to the White House announcement, Mr. Mugno currently is Vice President for Safety, Sustainability and Vehicle Maintenance at FedEx Ground.  He previously was Managing Director for FedEx Express Corporate Safety, Health and Fire Protection.  His responsibilities in both of these positions included developing, promoting and facilitating the safety program and culture.  An attorney, Mr. Mugno previously served as Division Counsel at Westinghouse Electric Corporation’s Waste Isolation Division and Deputy Staff Judge Advocate for the Eastern Region U.S. Army Military Traffic Management Command.  Mr. Mugno is a graduate of Washburn University School of Law and St. John’s University.

To view the White House announcement click here.


Tags:  OSHA  White House 

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IMA-NA Comments on OSHA Lock-Out/Tag-Out

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Wednesday, January 4, 2017

IMA-NA recently filed comments on an OSHA proposed rule, Standards Improvement Project - Phase IV, through which OSHA ostensibly intended to "remove or revise outdated, duplicative, unnecessary and inconsistent requirements in OSHA's safety and health standards." However, some of the proposals would have made substantive changes in the standards. For instance, the proposal would remove the well-established and relied upon term "unexpected" from the lock-out/tag-out (LOTO) standard. When the LOTO standard was first adopted by OSHA in 1989 it was specifically limited to only cover "the servicing and maintenance operations in which the unexpected energization or startup of the machines or equipment, or the release of stored energy could cause injury to employees." Contrary to the intent of the Standards Improvement Project, the proposal would significantly change the meaning and scope of the LOTO standard. The comments do not suggest that OSHA could not properly delete the term "unexpected" from the LOTO standard; they maintain that to do so OSHA should engage in a formal rulemaking process and not the Standards Improvement Project.

To read IMA-NA's comments please open the attachment below.

Download File (PDF)

Tags:  comments  LOTO  osha  Regulations  rulemaking 

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Mark Ellis Featured on Heartland Institute's Silica Podcast

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Tuesday, April 12, 2016

On the heels of OSHA's release of the finalized Rule on Respirable Crystalline Silica, IMA-NA and NISA's President, Mark Ellis sat down with Isaac Orr to offer insight on the rule for the Heartland Institute's Daily Podcast. Mark provided the historical context for OSHA's decision to update the rule, outlined how the rule has changed, and spoke to the impact on different industries.  Throughout the podcast Mark took the opportunity to speak to NISA's role as a leader in the industry through the proactive development of the Silicosis Prevention Program (SPP) and spoke to the ability to prevent silicosis without OSHA moving the Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) to 50 micrograms. The Heartland Institute's podcast offered another opportunity to highlight the industrial sand industry's ongoing work to keep workers safe and healthy outside of OSHA's standard setting for crystalline silica. 

To listen to the podcast click here.

Tags:  IMA-NA  news  NISA  osha  regulations  silica 

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WEBINAR: Mining & EHS - A Compliance Case Study

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Monday, March 28, 2016

Are you benchmarking IT systems for your Environmental, Health & Safety (EH&S) and Sustainability Management programs? Join us for our webinar, Mining & EHS - A Compliance Case Study, on Wednesday March 30, at 2:00 EST. Led by our Associate Member Gensuite, this webinar will feature an integrated suite of award-winning, cloud-based Web applications for compliance, operational excellence, and risk management.  Learn how to improve your EHS programs by utilizing some of the tools on the market including: intuitive interfaces, real-time data analytics and Mobile capabilities. 

The webinar will use a case study to feature EHS compliance best practices of a leading silica mining and manufacturing company. Gensuite will share practical insights into how your peers in the mining and related industries are addressing MSHA and OSHA requirements, driving accountability throughout the enterprise, and improving compliance performance through the use of web-based systems with a suite of fully-integrated and mobile-enabled compliance and risk management tools. Learn how companies such as U.S. Silica, PotashCorp, Ingersoll Rand, and General Electric are engaging employees at all levels of the organization in driving EHS performance improvements and operational efficiencies.

Click here to register

Tags:  associate member  compliance  EHS  Gensuite  msha  osha  silica  technology  webinar 

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Upcoming Webinars: OSHA Weight of Evidence Guidance and Mining & EHS - A Case Study

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Over the next week IMA-NA would like to encourage you to participate in three webinars offering insight into various aspects of the mining industry. In addition to the two webinars IMA-NA is hosting: Friday's OSHA Weight of Evidence Guidance and next Wednesday's Mining & EHS - A Case Study, the Association is co-sponsoring the Minerals Sciences & Information Coalition's webinar: Underpinning Innovation: The Science and Supply of America's Critical Minerals and Materials. These three webinars handle both practical topics for running your operations as well as educational topics, such as, the importance of federal investment in the U.S. Geological Survey.  Below you will find brief descriptions of each webinar as well as links to register.

 

Webinar Title: OSHA Weight of Evidence Guidance

Date/Time: Friday March 25, 2:00 EST

Click here to register 

OSHA’s new guidance on how to apply the Weight of Evidence approach for assessing complex scientific studies under its GHS HazCom rule is open for comment until May 2, 2016, and will impact IMA-NA members who must prepare Safety Data Sheets and warning labels for their products. The "weight of evidence" approach is intended to assist both manufacturers and employers in evaluating scientific studies on the potential health hazards of a chemical and determine what information must be disclosed. Attorneys Adele Abrams CMSP and Brian Yellin CIH of the Law Office of Adele L Abrams PC will present the legal and technical information you need to weigh in on this important subject.  

 

Webinar Title: Underpinning Innovation: The Science and Supply of America's Critical Minerals and Materials

Date/Time: Wednesday March 30, 1:00 EST

Click here to register

Minerals are a part of almost every product we use on a daily basis, either as the raw materials for manufacturing processes or as the end products themselves. Advanced technologies for communications, clean energy, medical devices, and national security rely on raw materials from mines throughout the world. In 2010, China curtailed exports of rare earth metals and sparked major concern about the security of global supply chains for a range of vital minerals and materials. This webinar is based on a Congressional briefing organized by AGI on behalf of the Mineral Science & Information Coalition (3 March 2016). The webinar will address the efforts being taken at the federal level to ensure a steady supply of critical minerals and materials.

 

Webinar Title: Mining & EHS - A Case Study

Date/Time: Wednesday March 30, 2:00 EST

Click here to register

Join us for a webinar where we will feature EHS compliance best practices of a leading silica mining and manufacturing company. Gensuite will share practical insights into how your peers in the mining and related industries are addressing MSHA and OSHA requirements, driving accountability throughout the enterprise, and improving compliance performance through the use of web-based systems with a suite of fully-integrated and mobile-enabled compliance and risk management tools. Learn how companies such as U.S. Silica, PotashCorp, Ingersoll Rand, and General Electric are engaging employees at all levels of the organization in driving EHS performance improvements and operational efficiencies.

 

Tags:  Associate Member  case study  compliance  EHS  industrial minerals industry  minerals science  msic  OSHA  regulations  usgs  webinars 

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WEBINAR: Mining & EHS - A Compliance Case Study

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Please register for Mining & EHS - A Compliance Case Study on March 30, 2016 2:00 PM EST by clicking here. 

As technologies are improved and adapted for use in different sectors, more tools become available for the mining industry to continuously improve EHS at their operations. IMA-NA members are already industry leaders in Safety & Health, but its the desire to constantly improves that keeps us ahead of the rest of the industry. Aside from creating safe and healthy work environments, our members need to comply with what seem to be ever changing requirements and focus areas from OSHA and MSHA. Against the backdrop of tightening regulations and improved technological support systems, IMA-NA is happy to announce a webinar which will demonstrate some tools available to help coordinate EHS efforts.  Led by IMA-NA Associate Member, Gensuite, we will explore an example of a web-based platform developed to make MSHA and OSHA compliance simpler.

Description:

Gensuite will share practical insights into how your peers in the mining and related industries are addressing MSHA and OSHA requirements, driving accountability throughout the enterprise, and improving compliance performance through the use of web-based systems with a suite of fully-integrated and mobile-enabled compliance and risk management tools.

Learn how companies such as U.S. Silica, PotashCorp, Ingersoll Rand, and General Electric are engaging employees at all levels of the organization in driving EHS performance improvements and operational efficiencies.

Date/Time:

Wednesday, March 30th, 2:00 EST

Click here to register

 

Tags:  Associate Member  compliance  EHS  MSHA  OSHA  technology  webinar 

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Coalition for Workplace Safety Submits Comments on OSHA's Record keeping Rule

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Thursday, October 29, 2015

IMA-NA along with over 60 other associations and organizations comprise the Coalition for Workplace Safety (CWS), a coalition established to support improving workplace safety through cooperation, assistance, transparency, clarity, and accountability.  On October 27th, CWS submitted comments to the record on OSHA's Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (“NPRM”), theClarification of Employer’s Continuing Obligation to Make and Maintain an Accurate Record of Each Recordable Injury and Illness. The comments focused on OSHA's attempt to circumvent both Congressional and Judiciary authority through the rulemaking process on this issue.  OSHA's proposed rule to alter record keeping standards to impose a continuing obligation categorically ignores the six month statute of limitations on record keeping citations established by Congress in the OSH Act. Not only does this rule attempt to bypass the intent of the OSH Act as enumerated by Congress but the statute of limitations has been reinforced through the U.S. Court of Appeals in multiple decisions. The comments also highlight the punitive nature of OSHA's expansion of grounds for citation by changing the nature of injury and illness record keeping to a continuing obligation.  CWS argues that this NPRM is out of line with precedent, acts as jurisdictional overreach and demonstrates the Agency's misguided belief that more citations create safer workplaces. 

To read the comments please open the attachment. 

Download File (PDF)

Tags:  coalition  comments  CWS  health  legislation  OSHA  record keeping  regulations  safety 

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