Weekly Poll (114)


Recently, Boston Mayor Martin Walsh, along with city Chief Operations Officer Patrick Brophy, began rolling out guidelines for reopening construction projects in the city. Do you think these rules will be used to influence other cities and high-risk COVID-19 areas to reopen the industry?


The European Union recently published the official delegated regulation to classify titanium dioxide as a suspected carcinogen by inhalation. Should TiO2 powder products carry more than 1% of the substance, the product will now be required to display a cancer warning. Are you in support or opposition of these measures?


Last month, OSHA announced the revision of the National Emphasis Program to identify and reduce or eliminate worker exposures to respirable crystalline silica in general industry, maritime and construction. Do you think the revision will provide best practices in keeping workers safe from the hazardous material?


In taking action against the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, how do you feel your company will be affected as a result of growing health and safety efforts, non-essential business closures and social distancing?


Recently, New York City-based major construction project jobsites have been hit with a series of surprise inspections as an effort to reduce the amount of construction worker injuries. However, some construction workers claim that more work still needs to be done to successfully prevent accidents. In the industry, which risks do you believe pose the biggest threat to jobsite safety?


On Nov. 18, a 510-foot-long suspension bridge collapsed in southwest France, resulting in two fatalities and several injuries. Although a cause has yet to be determined, a concern raised as a result has been whether structure’s weight limits were being exceeded. Should the county consider upgrading its infrastructure or increase its precautionary warnings to avoid future incidents?


At the end of November, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced that the ban on all retail distribution of methylene chloride to consumers for paint and coatings removal officially went into effect. Do you believe the ban will help protect consumers from the chemical’s health and safety risks?


In early November, a sinkhole roughly 100 feet long and 20 feet deep opened in Downtown Pittsburgh, causing a Port Authority G31 bus to partially sink with it. Do you think the incident is a wake-up call to upgrade Pennsylvania’s infrastructure?


In November, AIA released 133 new and updated Construction Management documents, including the Construction Manager as Constructor (CMc) and the Construction Manager as Adviser (CMa) families. Do you think the revised documents will improve the coordination and safety within the construction industry?


Last month, a 380,000-gallon oil leak was reported near Edinburgh, North Dakota. At first, the spill was reported to affect 22,500 square feet of land, but later that number was reported to actually be 10 times that amount, totaling roughly 209,100 square feet. Do you think the industry needs a better system when estimating environmental damages during initial response times?


The EPA announced last month that it would be receiving comments regarding a draft risk evaluation of more than 70 uses for methylene chloride until Dec. 30. Do think the information collected will successfully promote a list of actions needed to address those risks within the timeframe, as required by TSCA?


A 10-page update released by the U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board showed that the reason behind the Philadelphia Energy Solutions explosions that occurred in June could be pointed to a degraded piece of metal piping. Given that the segment of piping had high nickel and copper content, which is susceptible to corrosion caused by the hydrofluoric acid in the process fluid, do you believe this incident could have been avoided?


The comment period ends next week for U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s August request for feedback on its current respirable crystalline silica standard as it applies to construction. In receiving feedback on “the effectiveness of engineering and work practice control methods not currently included for the tasks and equipment,” do you think appropriate control measures for pieces of equipment connected to silica exposure will be revised?


In June, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced new lead standards to protect children, lowering dust-lead hazards from 40 micrograms of lead per square foot to 10 micrograms on floors and 250 micrograms to 100 micrograms on windowsills. In addition to the grant program passed in March, do you believe the EPA’s efforts will prove effective?


Recently, Louisiana’s Sunshine Bridge was struck a second time since its last incident in October. According to reports, Dank Silver (the tanker ship involved) damaged the fender system that serves to protect the bridge. DOTD spokesperson Rodney Mallett noted that the structures themselves are designed to handle this kind of damage, however, with reoccurring instances and increased water traffic, do you think fenders are the best option for bridge protection?


With responses due for the “Building a Safer Future” by July 31—a fourth consultation on improving fire and structural safety for high-rise housing in the United Kingdom involving various revisions including: increased residential building height; revised concept of duty holders; and stronger voices for residents (to name a few)—do you think the new Implementation Plan will help to prevent future tragedies like the Grenfell Tower fire?


Europe's discussion on whether or not titanium dioxide should be classified as a suspected cause of cancer via inhalation, is slowly coming to a head as the European Commission now waits for a March 7 meeting of the Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals Committee. Do you think TiO2 deserves this classification?


The city of Belton, South Carolina, recently proposed using orthophosphate, a phosphate-based additive, to help control the release of lead in service lines and household plumbing. Do you think this additive should be used as a safety precaution in areas with predominantly older piping?


Officials have proposed a new fix for San Francisco’s sinking Millennium Tower, that involves drilling piles into bedrock from the sidewalk on the building’s southwest corner, instead of the micro piles going into the bedrock through the concrete foundation. Do you think this is a better option?


OSHA recently released its Top 10 violations for 2018, with fall protection, hazard communication, scaffolds, respiratory protection and lockout/tagout making up the top five violations at least three years in a row. Is this what you expected?


OSHA recently released its Top 10 violations for 2018, with fall protection, hazard communication, scaffolds, respiratory protection and lockout/tagout making up the top five violations at least three years in a row. Is this what you expected?


To help workers in the construction industry identify fall hazards and learn how to create a fall protection system, the American Society of Safety Professionals released a virtual reality app that trains users in settings that mirror actual environments, without the associated dangers. Is this a step in the right direction to combat fall hazards?


A recent jobsite accident in a San Francisco transit tunnel has spurred promises from the San Francisco MTA to better vet general contractors. Should letting agencies investigate bidders' safety records during the contract process?


Officials from chemical company Arkema were recently indicted over explosions that occurred at a Texas plant during Hurricane Harvey last year. Should the company face charges over an incident brought on by such extreme conditions?


The CDC recently suggested current guidance on guarding workers against heat hazards may not be sufficient. In your experience, are heat risks taken seriously enough on construction sites?


Officials from chemical company Arkema were recently indicted over explosions that occurred at a Texas plant during Hurricane Harvey last year. Should the company face charges over an incident brought on by such extreme conditions?


Are you or your company participating in OSHA’s National Safety Stand-Down held this week?


The Occupational Safety and Health Administration recently issued a new bulletin regarding hearing loss brought on by solvent exposure. Do you think the painting industry properly educated on ototoxicity?


The Occupational Safety and Health Administration recently issued a new bulletin regarding hearing loss brought on by solvent exposure. Is the painting industry properly educated on ototoxicity?


A report recently surfaced that details Apple employees accidentally running into the brand-new headquarters’ interior glass panels and hurting themselves. What kind of remedy do you think would best fix this problem?


In January, USA Today released a list of the country’s most dangerous jobs, with painting in construction and maintenance taking 24th place (out of 25) based on data related to injuries and deaths. Do you think this is an accurate depiction of the danger of professional painting?


OSHA recently renewed its alliance with the National Association of Women in Construction, aiming to safeguard women in the building trades. In your experience, are women at special risk for workplace injury in the construction industry?


The retaliation portion of OSHA's Final Rule to Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses puts another layer of enforcement on Section 11(c) of the Occupational Safety and Health Act, which prohibits any person from discharging or discriminating against an employee who reports a fatality, injury or illness. Do you think this is necessary?


Last month, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio signed into law a controversial bill on worker safety, effectively mandating that 180,000 city construction workers need 40-55 hours of safety training before December 2018. Do you agree that this extra training is needed?


A Canadian worker’s recent death has been blamed on an allergic reaction to walnut-shell blasting media. Should these products be subject to further safety regulations?


OSHA recently began enforcement of its new silica standard in the construction industry. Has your company made adjustments to comply with the new rule?


A number of jobsite health incidents in the U.S. this summer were attributed to heat exhaustion. Are painting companies and other contractors doing enough to prevent heat-related illness and injury?


A coastal North Carolina apartment building was evacuated due to extensive corrosion, bringing to light the lack of regular inspections on seafront buildings. Do you think routine inspections should be mandated?


The Department of Labor is currently seeking applications for its annual Susan Harwood Training Grants program, which funds worker-safety training conducted by nonprofits like employer associations and unions. Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta has discussed eliminating this program in the future. Should the Harwood Grants go?


European regulators are considering a proposal to put titanium dioxide on a list of suspected carcinogens. Is this the right move?


The Occupational Safety and Health Administration recently launched its “Safe and Sound” campaign, to encourage employers in certain states to review their safety protocols to better protect workers. Do companies in the protective coatings industry review and update protocols often enough in your experience?


A Massachusetts painter was recently killed when his scissor lift came into contact with power lines. Have you or a member of your crew ever had a close call around power lines?


Last month, a California court ruled that an employer could be held responsible for so-called "take-home" asbestos, which can allegedly sicken family members after staying on a worker's clothing. Should employers be on the hook for secondhand asbestos exposure?


OSHA’s recent “Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses” rule requires employers to submit detailed injury and illness logs to the Agency and some of this information will be made public. Is this regulation a good or bad idea?


A recent report issued by the CDC found that construction workers appear in the top five on a list of occupations with the highest suicide rates. What do you think is the cause?


Last month, a painter fell to his death on a water tower job, working for a firm with numerous safety violations and falls in its history. What more can be done to prevent such tragedies?


This summer has been characterized by excessive heat warnings and a “heat dome” in the central United States. How do you protect workers who must be outside in these conditions?


When a safety inspector finds a potentially unsafe condition on a jobsite and notifies supervisors who then fail to warn workers of the danger, he or she should:


After being found guilty in connection with the death of a 22-year-old worker on a New York City construction site, a general contractor was handed a sentence requiring it to fund and take part in a public service announcement regarding construction site safety. Was this sentence fair?


What’s the best way to maintain a safe jobsite?


When renovating an old structure, like a ship, where does the responsibility for informing workers about possible lead exposure lie?


OSHA recently finalized its rule to better protect workers from respirable silica dust exposure, but several industry groups are against it. What do you think?


As a coatings professional, when you tackle “small” painting jobs around the house, do you still observe the same kinds of safety precautions you do on the job?


The Golden Gate Bridge is getting a $76 million metal "net" system to deter jumpers from using the bridge to end their lives. Do you think this is a good use of those funds?


A Pennsylvania roofer is facing 25 years in prison for lying, and ordering employees to lie, to OSHA inspectors after a worker was killed in a 45-foot fall. Does the potential punishment fit the crime?


Worker fatalities are on the rise in the energy industry. Why do you think that is?


An industry-backed bill in Michigan—tougher than federal law--would allow pipeline companies to keep inspection, safety and other records secret. How does that sound to you?


Does OSHA need more authority to address its most flagrant repeat violators?


Five years after the deadly BP explosion in the Gulf, which aspect of the offshore industry still needs the most safety attention?


Should federal agencies have the right to mandate safety and security rules (such as hair length and protective gear) that may conflict with religious preferences?


NIOSH has recommended that all U.S. workplaces be smokefree (including e-cigarettes). Do you support this idea?


A Chinese company has 3D-printed a five-story apartment building. Would you live in it?


OSHA will not investigate a scaffolding collapse in Portland that damaged property but did not injure anyone. Should some federal agency be required to review job-site accidents that occur when no one is working?


A new system allows workers to anonymously text information and photos about site hazards and near misses to employers. Good idea or bad idea?


After numerous warnings, federal OSHA has rejected Arizona’s residential fall-protection guidelines as too lenient. Should states be allowed to craft standards that are looser than federal OSHA’s?


New York's 135-year-old Scaffold Safety Law holds employers and owners 100% liable in injury lawsuits if they fail to provide adequate equipment or training. A new bill would change the law to factor in the worker's responsibility. What do you think?


A new market forecast shows booming demand for silica sand in North America, just as OSHA prepares to limit silica exposures. So what’s the take-home message?


A building collapse in New Orleans’ historic French Quarter has raised concern over city building inspections, which do not include structural interiors. What do you think of this policy?


Do you conduct drug tests on your employees?


The family of a U.S. worker killed on the job is calling for a $50,000 mandatory fine if a workplace hazard is found to "materially contribute" to a fatal incident. (The fine in their case was $2,300.) What do you think?


U.S. regulators have reinstated an employee fired for making a secret video of a failed inspection test. Whom do you back?


What is the best way for employers to ensure that employees who are provided fall protection actually wear it?


How well do you think weight limits are being enforced on bridges and highways?


San Francisco has slapped "Earthquake Warning" labels on buildings whose owners are not complying with a new retrofit program. Owners are crying foul. What do you think?


Renowned architect Zaha Hadid has said that architects “have nothing to do with the workers.” Should architects concern themselves with worker conditions on their projects?


Which of these would be most likely to change your safety practices?


The California Supreme Court has ruled that principal architects are legally liable for the consequences of their designs, even if the architect did not have the final say on construction. Fair or unfair?


A new U.S. Executive Order will require bidders for major federal contracts to report recent wage, safety or other labor law violations. Good idea or bad idea?


In general, how often do you see workers using appropriate fall protection measures and equipment in roofing work?


OSHA is considering increasing “whistleblower” protection for employees who report health and safety problems. Good idea or bad idea?


What should a builder do if he or she encounters design or specification issues that may affect a building’s integrity or performance?


California regulators fined and halted a $6.34M drywall project because the contractor had no license, although he had applied four months earlier. What do you think?


How often do you think speed compromises worker safety to meet a project deadline?


How much training do you/your employees receive in dealing with emergencies (fire, structural collapse, etc.) on a work site?


What do you think of OSHA’s proposal to move injury and illness reporting online and make it available to the public?


How should industry employers treat marijuana in states where it is now legal?


What legislative priority should the American Coatings Association’s PaintPAC be looking for in its political candidates this year?


Generally speaking, which type of infrastructure do you think poses the greatest safety concern today?


OSHA is asking (but not requiring) commenters on the federal silica proposal to disclose funding sources and conflicts of interest. Good idea or bad idea?


Deaths and citations from worksite falls are reaching new highs. So why do so many workers still skip fall protection?


OSHA is proposing that employers’ Form 300 illness and injury logs be put online for public access. Good idea or bad idea?


The world’s largest labor group accuses Qatar of near-slavery treatment of World Cup 2022 construction workers. What should World Cup sponsor FIFA do?


The world’s largest labor group accuses Qatar of near-slavery treatment of World Cup 2022 construction workers. What should World Cup sponsor FIFA do?


Construction employers want three more months to comment on OSHA’s proposed silica rule. Should OSHA grant the extension?


Deaths and citations from worksite falls are reaching new highs. Why don’t more workers use appropriate fall protection?


Multiple studies suggest that workers underreport on-the-job injuries and illnesses. What do you see?


OSHA has finally announced a proposed rule to limit worker exposure to respirable crystalline silica. Do you support this plan?


Recent fatal structural collapses have led to criminal charges against site owners, contractors and even local authorities. In general, should these accidents be investigated as crimes?


Which work pressure is most likely to keep you up at night?


“I know we have to protect the employees, but sometimes they don’t listen,” one employer cited by OSHA said recently. What should happen in such cases?


The buyer of a foreclosed, century-old home sold for $3,600 was awarded $115,000 because she did not receive an EPA lead notice. Who should be responsible for such notifications?


Federal lawmakers have reintroduced a bill to allow homeowners to opt out of the EPA’s lead-safe painting requirements. Do you support this plan?


What industry trends do you follow most closely?


In these “do more with less” days, how often do you feel safety is being compromised in the process?


A worker in the doomed Florida parking garage reported cracks just before it collapsed. Have you ever been concerned about the safety of a building where you worked?


OSHA’s UK counterpart is adapting a “loser pays” system, in which companies that break health and safety laws would have to help pay for investigation and enforcement. What do you think of this idea?


A Pennsylvania painting company owner faces criminal charges for the electrocution of an employee. Authorities say he ignored the presence of high-power lines on a job site. Is the charge fair?


An experienced industrial painter crippled in a 40-foot fall was recently awarded $2.3 million for his injuries, although he was not wearing fall protection. What do you think of this jury verdict?


What is the biggest health and safety challenge facing construction, remodeling and painting-contractor companies?


Most workplace deaths and serious injuries are easily prevented with well-known safety precautions, yet horrific industry accidents still happen frequently. Who is most responsible for this situation?


A senior engineer at MassDOT says the agency has a culture of secrecy about confronting safety issues. How does your company or organization approach safety problems internally and on site?


Who should be held most liable for unsafe practices at a worksite?


Several recent catastrophic workplace accidents have prompted criminal charges against owners of companies involved in the project. When should criminal charges against company officers be an option?


A new study shows growing and widespread non-compliance with requirements for Personal Protective Equipment. What is your impression of PPE compliance across the industry?


 
 
   

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