SeaWorld says it won’t appeal an OSHA fine connected with the death of an animal trainer working with killer whales. This means OSHA’s use of the General Duty Clause (GDC) in this case will stand. The U.S. Supreme Court won’t get to consider it. The agency uses the GDC when there are no specific federal safety regulations that pertain to a workplace hazard. Such was the case with trainers working with killer whales at SeaWorld theme parks. SeaWorld had argued that OSHA’s use of the GDC in the February death of trainer Dawn Brancheau was overly broad. The OSHRC did downgrade the citation from willful to serious and reduced the total fines from $75,000 to $12,000. SeaWorld had been opposing in court. Arguing before the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington, DC, that using barriers to abate the hazard of contact between the trainers and whales as suggested by OSHA would create additional hazards for its employees. It also argued not allowing trainers in the water with whales during shows would hurt its business. The court upheld the OSHRC decision. The trainers haven’t been back in the water with the whales since the appeals court upheld the OSHRC
A survey recently found that ergonomic issues are having a big impact on the way nurses do their job and their ability to care for patients. A survey of 250 full-time nurses shows that 1 in 10 nurses say they have been injured at work over the past year. Nurses suggested improvements to their work environments would help ergonomic strain. helpful modifications would include: Occupational Saety Training (OSHA Training) and the following:
- an increase in nursing staff
- providing a dedicated ergonomics team to help as needed
- re-designing the layout of floors and patient rooms to aid workflow and patient needs
- updated nursing station furniture
- newer medical equipment and furniture in patient areas, and
- more point-of-care solutions that allow sit-to-stand functionality while on the floor.
For more information, check out Spectrum Safety Training for healthcare worker safety.
A challenging scenario you might face in the workplace: A safety manager just completed OSHA Safety Training for all his staff and now is trying to motivate workers to think about safety improvements, but he doesn’t have the budget to offer incentives. What would you do in this situation?
Offering gift cards to people that came up with the most ideas works for company with budget for safety incentives.
If you were the safety manager, what would you do in this situation, and why?