Archives for May, 2007

OSHA Saves Lives (But Not Enough)

By David Michaels In the din of the recent press attention and Senate and House hearings on about OSHA’s failings, it’s easy to forget that OSHA has saved many lives, too. Some evidence on that score comes from a new paper three colleagues and I have just published in Chest (Welch LS, Haile E, Dement…

Friday Blog Roundup

Several bloggers have been following the story of Julie MacDonald, the deputy assistant secretary who oversaw the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service’s endangered species program and resigned in disgrace last week, after it was revealed that she’d been giving industry lobbyists internal agency documents. GrrlScientist at Living the Scientific Life, James Hrynyshyn at Island of Doubt, and…

By David Michaels Matt Madia at Reg Watch has tipped us off to an article about the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs head Susan Dudley (in the subscription-only BNA), in she which gives us a preview of what we can expect from this part of the executive branch during the remainder of the Bush…

Occupational Health News Roundup

New reports on past disasters are in the news this week. Today, the Mine Safety and Health Administration released its report on the Sago Mine Disaster, which killed 12 mine workers; the report cites lightning for sparking the explosion that trapped the miners underground. A clinical study clearly linking World Trade Center dust to serious diseases…

By David Michaels The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) has just released a study examining lung disease and exposure to flavor chemicals among workers at the Carmi Flavor and Fragrance Company factory in Commerce, California. One or possibly two cases of bronchiolitis obliterans had been known to public health authorities before the…

By David Michaels Congresswoman Rosa L. DeLauro (D-CT), chair of the House of Representatives Appropriations subcommittee that funds the FDA has called on Food and Drug Administration to ban diacetyl until more research is completed. As we’ve written (here and here, for example), diacetyl is the artificial butter flavor chemical that has been crippling workers…

The Department of Labor recently published its semi-annual regulatory agenda with revised (again) target dates for OSHA and MSHA rules.  The Department goes through this exercise twice a year, but it is a rare occasion when the “Timetable for Action” dates are actually met.  After just a few moments comparing this agenda to the one published…

By David Michaels In the last few days, the national media has finally focused on the failure of OSHA to protect workers from devastating lung disease caused by exposure to artificial butter flavor. (The problem goes well beyond microwave popcorn factories, to the flavor industry and other snack food plants.) Articles in the Washington Post,…

Friday Blog Roundup

I’ve been away from my computer for the past several days, so these links are all from the early part of the week:

22 OSHA standards?

During the April 24, 2007 House Workforce Protection Subcommittee hearing, “”Have OSHA Standards Kept up with Workplace Hazards?”, the Bush administration’s record in promulgating occupational safety and health standards was a hot topic. (“With all of those [rules] that have been cast aside,” asked an indignant Congressman Hare (D-IL)— “what’s OSHA been doing?”)        …