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January, 2013

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Welcome to the SAF-T-GARDIAN, a monthly e-mail newsletter from Saf-T-Gard International.  We designed the SAF-T-GARDIAN to be timely and useful.  You are receiving this newsletter either as a valued Saf-T-Gard customer, company associate or supplier, or you have visited our website at www.saftgard.com.  Some of the links are time-sensitive and may move or expire as the news changes.  Some sources may also require registration.

You are welcome to forward this newsletter in its entirety to others in your organization or encourage them to subscribe themselves.  If you have questions or suggestions for topics you would like to see included in the SAF-T-GARDIAN, please let us know by e-mail to saf-t-gardian@saftgard.com.

Previous issues of the Saf-T-Gardian are available.

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PRIVACY POLICY - We do not and will not exchange lists or other information with any outside organizations.  Your information is secure and private within Saf-T-Gard International.

Some of the downloads are in PDF format which requires the Adobe Acrobat Reader. Get Adobe Acrobat Reader


     OSHA has redesigned and updated its Spanish-language version of the agency's website to include the most up-to-date safety and health information and to inform workers and employers of their rights and responsibilities under the law. Like the English homepage, the site now includes a set of rotating images highlighting the latest news and agency activities, and prominently features workers' rights and steps to take if workers have concerns about their safety and health in the workplace. As OSHA continues to expand the number of resources available in Spanish, the site will be updated with links to those materials to provide a dynamic and timely safety and health resource for workers and employers.

Access the OSHA Spanish language website.

OSHA Requests Recommendations to Update its Construction Industry Standards
     OSHA is issuing a Request for Information to initiate the fourth phase of its Standards Improvement Project (SIP). The purpose of SIP-IV is to improve and streamline existing OSHA construction standards by removing or revising requirements that are confusing or outdated, or that duplicate, or are inconsistent with, other standards. The agency invites the public, including employers, employees, and employee representatives to submit recommendations for revisions to existing construction standards and the rationale for these recommendations. Individuals may submit comments electronically via the Federal eRulemaking Portal.  Comments may also be submitted by facsimile or mail. See the Federal Register notice for details. Comments must be submitted by Feb. 4, 2013.

Access the Federal eRulemaking Portal.

For the Federal Register notice.

OSHA Continues Enforcement of Fall Protection in Residential Construction, Extends Temporary Enforcement Measures
     OSHA will extend for three months its temporary enforcement measures in residential construction. The temporary enforcement measures, extended through March 15, 2013, include priority free on-site compliance assistance, penalty reductions, extended abatement dates, measures to ensure consistency, and increased outreach. Fatalities from falls are the number one cause of workplace death in construction. OSHA has been working closely with the industry to assist employers in complying with the new directive. From Oct. 1, 2011 to Sept. 30, 2012, OSHA's On-site Consultation Projects performed more than 3,000 on-site visits, conducted close to 1,100 training sessions and delivered close to 500 presentations related to fall protection in residential construction. OSHA's regional and area offices also conducted more than 1,200 outreach activities on the directive. The agency will continue to work with employers to ensure a clear understanding of, and to facilitate compliance with, the new policy. OSHA will continue to develop materials to assist the industry, including a wide variety of educational and training materials to assist employers with compliance, which are available on the Web pages for residential construction and the Fall Prevention Campaign.

Watch OSHA Director explain the Fall Protection Policies for Residential Construction

For more information.

NIOSH Requests Comments on the Inclusion of Industry and Occupation in Electronic Health Records
Undoubtedly, we as workers spend more than half of our waking hours at work. Our health can affect our ability to work safely and productively, and, in turn, our jobs can affect our health. Yet information about our work is not routinely captured in medical records. When industry and occupation (I/O) data are readily available in electronic health records (EHRs), health care providers have the critical information to guide the detection, diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of health conditions, as well as the tools to prevent recurrence of work-related and non-work-related conditions, thereby improving the health of the working population.
     Currently, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (IT) Policy Committee is requesting public comment on Stage 3 of the Meaningful Use criteria. As part of an effort to ensure that information collected in electronic health records has meaningful use, NIOSH supports including industry and occupation information as necessary fields in EHR software. Research has shown occupation to be a predictor of health, and the inclusion of I/O could have significant impact on the overall health and well-being of patients.

For more information and to submit comments.

From the NIOSH Science Blog - Use of Sit and Stand Workstations
     Over the past year, NIOSH and its Total Worker Health Program have been traveling the country sharing the evidence and benefits of comprehensively integrating health protection with health promotion, including workplace programs that encourage physical activity, weight loss and stress management. Recently, we launched an internal NIOSH pilot program to explore the use of sit and stand work stations as part of a workplace health and wellbeing initiative to reduce sedentary work in our workplace.  The pilot program was inspired by emerging research on the impact of sedentary work on employee health and by new employer initiatives that aim to decrease sedentary work, such as VHA’s Wellness Program highlighted in a recent NIOSH Science Blog post. A sit-stand workstation allows the user to intermittently sit or stand while working on the computer, participating in a conference call, or performing other work. The customizable workstation allows users to easily transition between a seated and standing work position multiple times throughout the day.

For more information and to comment on the blog.

Guidance for Preventing Seasonal Influenza in the Workplace
     NIOSH and the CDC offer the resources employers need to provide sound advice about protecting workers from seasonal influenza in the workplace. While each workplace is unique, and a worker’s risk for occupational exposure to influenza can vary widely depending on the nature of their job, workplaces should:

  • •Promote influenza vaccination among workers.
  • •Encourage proper hand and respiratory hygiene practices.
  • •Educate workers on influenza signs and symptoms.

For more information and links to additional resources.


Requirements for Emergency Eyewash and Shower Station

     "Do OSHA regulations require a shower and eyewash station near a spray booth for use with lacquer and contact adhesive?"

     The OSHA requirements for emergency eyewashes and showers, found at 29 CFR 1910.151(c), specify that "where the eyes or body of any person may be exposed to injurious corrosive materials, suitable facilities for quick drenching or flushing of the eyes and body shall be provided within the work area for immediate emergency use." As the standard states, an eyewash and/or safety shower would be required where an employee's eyes or body could be exposed to injurious corrosive materials. If none of the materials used in this work area is an injurious corrosive (as indicated by the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) for each product), then an emergency eyewash or shower would not be required pursuant to 1910.151(c).
     While not having the force of a regulation under the OSH Act, the current ANSI standard addressing emergency eyewash and shower equipment (ANSI Z358.1-2004) provides for eyewash and shower equipment in appropriate situations when employees are exposed to hazardous materials. ANSI's definition of "hazardous material" would include caustics, as well as additional substances and compounds that have the capability of producing adverse effects on the health and safety of humans. ANSI's standard also provides detail with respect to the location, installation, nature, and maintenance of eyewash and shower equipment.


OSHA Publication Download


Visit the Saf-T-Gard web-site for valuable information, news, and product resources.


New Products  

There Are No Substitutes Or Alternatives To Breathing Safety And Comfort

The outstanding performance of AirWave® is due to its patent-pending wave design technology. It allows more airflow in and out of the respirator for cool comfort and easier breathing. By providing more surface area, AirWave® ensures cool comfort inside the respirator, without a valve. Plus our exclusive FlexFit™ design provides added comfort and compliance over time.
  • Exclusive easy-breathing wave design
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  • Softspun® lining for increased comfort and durability.
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Order now for immediate shipment.

News You Can Use

Meeting the Needs of Next-Generation Workers
     When we consider the next generation of plant workers, we typically think of younger workers who may be relatively new to the job market. But according to The Center for Aging and Work at Boston College, the next generation of workers will likely combine younger and older employees because four of every five baby boomers plan to work past the "normal retirement" age — either because they want to or will need the extra income. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, about 40 million people will enter the workforce, 25 million will leave, and 109 million will remain over the next decade. The workforce will be comprised of a rising number of workers under 25 and over 45, with a declining number of middle-age employees. This combination of younger and older workers will make it imperative for companies to provide individuals with hand protection that meets their specific job and age-related needs.

For the full report.

Source: Occupational Health & Safety Magazine

What to do During an Electrical Outage

     Americans have become so accustomed to a continuous, uninterrupted supply of electricity that we are usually unprepared when this supply is cut off by storms, weather, or other accidents. The purpose of this fact sheet is to help the consumer be better prepared when there is a power interruption.  We will look beyond a short-term power outage and provide suggestions in case a home needs to be shut down for longer periods of time. The actions that you take will differ from season to season. For example, a winter power outage requires different action than a summer outage. We will look at these problems and discuss the steps you need to follow to stay as comfortable and as prepared as possible.
     In the event of short-term power failures, don't panic.  Calmly check to see if your neighbors still have electricity. If they do, the problem could be inside your home. Check your main fuses or circuit breakers to see if they have blown or tripped. Replacing a fuse or resetting a circuit breaker may restore your electricity.
     If you determine that the power failure has not been caused by a problem in the home, call your electric supplier. A repairperson will be dispatched as quickly as possible. Your supplier should also be able to tell you if it will be an extended outage.  Unplug appliances with electronic components, such as microwaves, televisions and computers. This will help to eliminate damage to your appliances from voltage surges when the electricity is restored. Wait a few minutes before turning on these appliances when the electricity is restored. This will reduce demand on the power supplier's electrical system.

For the full report.

Source: Energy Education Council

Study Shows High Economic Impact of Cancer in Employees
     Each year, more than three million American workers are diagnosed with cancer, leading to high productivity losses that mainly affect smaller companies, reports a study in the December Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, official publication of the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM). The researchers used a national survey of medical spending to analyze the prevalence and cost impact of cancer in working adults. Based on data from 2004 to 2008, they estimate that 3.3 million American workers are diagnosed with cancer annually.
     Cancer in U.S. workers leads to productivity losses of more than 33 million disability days per year, amounting to $7.5 billion in lost productivity. Based on the average wages of the workers surveyed, disability costs due to cancer were equal to 20 percent of total healthcare expenditures. Nearly 85 percent of the workers with cancer worked for smaller companies with fewer than 500 employees. These small-business employees had higher rates of other health problems, including high blood pressure, depression, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. They were also more likely to be uninsured.

For the full report.

Source: American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM)

From CalOSHA - Injury and Illness Prevention eTool
     Employers in California are required to have an effective written Injury and Illness Prevention Program (IIPP). The benefits of an effective IIPP include improved workplace safety and health, better morale, increased productivity, and reduced costs of doing business. Whether you need to develop a written IIPP or improve your existing IIPP, this etool will help you. This etool will produce a written IIPP for you by answering a set of questions (see How to Create Your Written IIPP - Questions). Each of your answers will automatically appear underlined in a written IIPP which is specific to your workplace. To produce a complete written IIPP you must fully answer all the IIPP questions. This eTool can be valuable for your business whether or not you are located in California.  There are also Effectiveness Questions for you to evaluate how effective your IIPP is and Sample Forms and Checklists to help you put your IIPP into practice and document what you have done. Remember that an effective IIPP is not just a paper program. For your IIPP to be effective you must fully put it into practice in your workplace.

To access the eTool.

Useful Fact Sheets on Electrical Safety
     Electricity is a serious workplace hazard. Some workers work with electricity directly, such as electricians and workers who handle overhead lines, cable harnesses, and circuit assemblies. Other workers, including building custodians, office workers and sales people, work with electricity indirectly and may also be exposed to electrical hazards. The New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health has numerous Fact Sheets on Electrical Safety available for downloading.  Some are also available in Spanish.

  • Two Ways to Wire an Electric Tool, NYCOSH Fact Sheet
  • Install a Grounded Outlet, NYCOSH Fact Sheet
  • Conductors Connections and Polarity
  • Reversed Polarity Can Kill
  • Using Electrical Equipment in Wet Locations
  • Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCIs) to the Rescue
  • Wire Size And Ampacity
  • Extension Cord Facts
  • 120 Volts Can Kill
  • Power Lines Kill Workers
  • Electrical Safety Summary
  • Condensed Electrical Glossary
  • General Rules for Construction Electrical Safety

To download any or all of these Fact Sheets.


OSHA's Fall Protection Policies for Residential Construction


Cold Weather High Visibility Hand Protection

   Versa-Gard XG gloves feature a warm, fleecy acrylic glove in hi-viz orange or lime yellow color, palm coated with black natural rubber. The flexible crinkle finish provides outstanding grip. Extended continuous elastic wrist. Available in hand sizes 8, 9, 10, 11.


Order now for immediate shipment.


International News

From Europe - A Website on Workers' Health Education
     The Workers' Health Education website aims to provide a database of learning materials for safe and healthy work all over the world. It collects, selects and organizes learning materials that are available on the Internet, free of charge or for low prices, from non-profit organizations. In addition, it provides a forum where participants can ask the community for support for specific needs and share their own training materials, experiences, plans and programs. Everyone is invited to share learning materials through this initiative.

For more information.


Did You Know?

Saf-T-Gard Unlocks
The Alphabet of Respiratory Safety

     APR, MFR, FFR, PAPR, IDLH, SCBA, SAR, NIOSH 42CFR84, N95, P100, OV, AG, EEBA.  We understand respiratory protection starting with the hazard analysis to selection of products to fit-testing and recordkeeping requirements for your employees.  We partner with industry-leading brand names including North, 3M, Moldex, and MSA to offer the widest selection of superior products and leading respiratory protection technology.

Saf-T-Gard has the expertise and the products you need.

For more product information.


As I see it ...

It is January 2013 - the start of another new year.  There are a lot of clichés about the new year including fresh start, clean break, clean slate, etc.  And there are also the clichés about the same old stuff, not reinventing the wheel, the more things change the more they stay the same, etc.  You could apply any or all of them to the economy, politics, government, or virtually anything else.  So let's apply them to safety and, in particular, the safety of your co-workers.  As I have written before, change just for the sake of change can be disruptive and has the potential to waste time, energy, and other resources with questionable results.  But avoiding change for the risk it entails is also counter-productive.  Maybe there is a better way.  When evaluating new safety products, consider both the quantitative and qualitative aspects.  Quantitatively, performing side-by-side comparisons provides a good tool to determine how long products last.  Quite often, a more expensive product will last so much longer than a cheaper product that it provides superior value.  The only way to prove this quantitatively is to select a group of co-workers to use samples of a new product and measure the results.  The qualitative analysis involves engaging co-workers in the evaluation process, particularly with regard to aspects of comfort such as fit, flexibility, and ease of use and maintenance.  The quantitative and qualitative considerations do not exist in a vacuum - they are inter-related.  While the course of least-resistance is to avoid change, that is not considered to be a "best practice" in business today.  Managed change, in an organized and structured fashion, is definitely the way to go.  Are you ready to consider a change in your selection and use of industrial safety products and personal protective equipment?  That's where we have the experience and expertise to assist.  We are Saf-T-Gard,  - passionate about industrial safety for 4 generations.

Want to learn more?

Here is how to get started.

Richard Rivkin, President and CEO



  1. GOT THE HEAT?  -  Zetex Plus treated fiberglass gloves and mittens with wool linings withstand temperatures up to 2000 ° F.
  2. GOT THE TOUCH? - Polyurethane-coated nylon gloves such as Versa-Gard Flex P provide maximum tactile sensitivity, particularly when handling small parts.
  3. GOT THE SMELL? - Not if you are using a properly fitted air-purifying respirator.  All users of negative-pressure air-purifying respirators must be fit-tested.
  4. GOT THE VIEW? - New wide-angle goggles combine superior peripheral vision with impact and splash protection.  Styles available to fit over prescription eyewear.
  5. GOT THE SOUND? - 3M/Peltor PTL earmuffs feature a unique Push-To-Listen button so that workers can hear instructions and conversation without removing their protective earmuffs.

Want more information on any of this month's Saf-T-Tips?  E-mail us for a prompt reply.

Warning - Your Electrical Gloves May Not Be Safe Now!

All rubber insulating products must be subjected to periodic electrical tests as required by OSHA 29CFR1910.137(b)(2).  The Voltgard Test Lab is uniquely qualified to perform this service.

  • All testing is in full compliance with applicable ASTM specifications and OSHA regulations.
  • All rubber insulating gloves and sleeves are cleaned, then visually inspected inside and out.  Other rubber insulating products are cleaned, then inspected on all outer surfaces.
  • Quick turn-around.
  • Replacement service.

For more information and a testing service order form.


Question and Answer

Question -  Employees face slippery floors at meatpacking and poultry slaughter plants every day. The floors are wet and littered with pieces of fat and other product. Temperatures and traffic in the plants cause the fat to adhere to the floor creating a very slippery surface, despite the use of non-skid surfacing products that are easily worn away or need constant replacement. The floors are slippery throughout the plant, including the stairs and hallways leading to locker rooms and cafeterias. Because of these conditions, meatpacking and poultry companies require the use of steel-toe rubber boots. However, several meatpacking companies and poultry plants may require the steel-toe rubber boots to be worn, but do not provide them at no cost to their employees. Would steel-toe rubber boots be considered specialty footwear, and would the employer be required to provide these boots at no cost to its employees?

Answer -  Yes. The PPE standard, 29 CFR 1910.132(h)(2) provides that "[t]he employer is not required to pay for non-specialty safety-toe protective footwear (including steel-toe shoes or steel-toe boots) . . . provided that the employer permits such items to be worn off the job-site." 29 CFR 1910.132(h)(2). As OSHA explained in the Final Rule for Employer Payment for PPE, "exempted footwear provides the protection of an ordinary safety-toe shoe or boot, while footwear with additional safety attributes beyond this (e.g., shoes and boots with special soles) fall under the employer payment requirement." The agency also said that, "[t]he term 'non-specialty' is used to indicate that the footwear.. .being exempted is not of a type designed for special use on the job (e.g., rubber steel-toe shoes)." 72 Fed. Reg. 64342, 64348 (Nov. 15, 2007). Further, OSHA used rubber boots with steel toes as an example of PPE for which employer payment is required if used to comply with an OSHA standard. See Table V-2 of the Final PPE Payment Rule, 72 Fed. Reg. 64342, 64353 (Nov. 15, 2007). Therefore, for the scenario described, the employer is required to pay for the steel-toe rubber boots.

If you have an industrial safety question you'd like answered, email saf-t-gardian@saftgard.com

Special Offers

Winterize Your Footwear

Studs rubber pullovers fit over any shoe or boot to provide superb traction.  Constructed of industrial-grade rubber and tungsten carbide studs.  Features a convenient heel pull-tab for quick pull-on and removal.  Replacement packages of studs are available.

  • Traction accessory for work shoes and boots.
  • Servus Studs work as second soles with tungsten carbide studs that bite into the ice
  • Replaceable tungsten carbide studs are fixed in each stretch outsole cover.
  • Compact and easily store in a pocket or workbelt until needed.
  • Pliable in cold weather
  • Ideal for or work and play in the snow and ice

Order now for immediate shipment.

Saf-T-Gard Spotlight  Saf-T-Gard Spotlight

Maria Hernandez is a sales assistant and has been with Saf-T-Gard over 1 year.
  • What Maria likes about Saf-T-Gard: "I like the work environment and the ability to work independently because it means my superiors trust me.  I also like the people, everyone is friendly and always helpful."
  • What makes Maria's day: "The feeling of accomplishment after a productive day."
  • Maria's' outside interests: "Spending time with my family, shopping, movies."
  • Anything else? "Always smile."



PRIVACY POLICY - We do not and will not exchange lists or other information with any outside organizations.  Your data is secure and private within Saf-T-Gard International.
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Fax: USA  1-888-548-4273 / 1-847-291-1610
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