The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

Article excerpt

The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)--www.osha.gov--has issued new workplace safety and health guidance that will help employers prepare for an influenza pandemic. Developed in coordination with the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), "Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for an Influenza Pandemic" provides general guidance for all types of workplaces, describes the differences between seasonal, avian and pandemic influenza, and presents information on the nature of a potential pandemic, how the virus is likely to spread and how exposure is likely to occur.

Recommendations for employee protection are presented, and include engineering controls, work practices and use of personal protective equipment.

Also from OSHA are two measures to enhance shipyard safety and a final rule on electrical installation standard. For shipyards, OSHA issued an updated direct final rule that incorporates more recent National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standards into the OSHA fire protection standard; it went into effect Jan. 16, 2007. And, OSHA published new guidance that alerts shipyard employers and their employees about abrasive blasting hazards and the controls that can be implemented to protect employees.

Changes reflected in the final rule for OSHA's general industry electrical installation standard focus on safety in the design and installation of electric equipment in the workplace. …