Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Workplace First Aid Program

For anyone looking to establish or improve their workplace first aid program, National Safety Compliance recommends you download a free OSHA publication from their website.

Best Practices Guide: Fundamentals of a Workplace First Aid Program

This OSHA publication seeks to assist employers in a practical way by breaking down workplace first aid programs into four essential elements: management leadership and employee involvement; worksite analysis; hazard prevention and control; and safety and health training.

After downloading the free publication, NSC recommends the following sites for obtaining OSHA compliance first aid kits or first aid training materials.

First Aid Kits

First Aid Training Programs

Monday, January 12, 2009

Location of First Aid Kits & First Aid Cabinets

OSHA regulations require a workplace to have a first aid kit readily available if emergency medical services are farther than 3-4 minutes away. This somewhat strict interpretation of the OSHA regulations means that almost all workplaces are required to have a first aid kit and also to have someone who is first aid trained.

Regarding the location of first aid supplies, OSHA says...
"The first aid supplies should be located in an easily accessible area, and the first aid provider generally should not have to travel through several doorways, hallways and/or stairways to access first aid supplies. " Larger workplaces may need additional first aid kits to meet this requirement.

For more information about choosing a workplace appropriate first aid kit, please see out blog post entitled, "OSHA Required First Aid Kits."

First aid training programs are also available from National Safety Compliance.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

OSHA Required Eye Wash Stations

The topic of eyewash stations comes up a frequently with employers.

In general, the OSHA first aid standard requires eyewash stations in locations in which there is a risk of accidental exposure to corrosive or caustic materials.

The need to have an eyewash station in close proximity can be determined by looking at the chemical’s first aid instructions, either on the container or on the MSDS. If the first aid information indicates that an exposure to the eyes requires flushing, then you need to have an eyewash station.

If the first aid instructions do not indicate flushing the eyes, then you do not “need” to have an eyewash station–though nothing’s stopping you from installing one.

Please keep in mind, that the small 16-ounce bottles that are commonly found in workplaces, do not meet the OSHA requirements for an eye wash station. OSHA requires continuous flushing of the eyes for 15 minutes. There is just not enough in those small bottles to accomplish this task. The large wall mounted eye wash stations are made to fulfill the exact OSHA requirements.

So, do you have hazardous chemicals or substances requiring eyewash stations? If so what are they, and what safety measures do you have in place? Please also remember that OSHA requires an eye wash station in be in near proximity. If you have chemcials at different locations at your workplace, then more than one eye wash station may be necessary to meet the OSHA regulations.

Eye wash stations are not just about meeting the OSHA regulations. Eye wash stations are about saving the sight of someone who has harmful chemicals in their eye. An employee's eye sight is worth much more than the cost of an eye wash station. National Safety Compliance has complete eye wash stations available for less than $200.