crystalline silica

Category archives for crystalline silica

Memorable moments from Labor Secretary’s confirmation hearing

President Trump’s nominee for Labor Secretary provided a peek during his confirmation hearing on his approach to running the Labor Department. Several things he said made me ask myself: “will employees at the Labor Department challenge Alex Acosta to keep his word on that?”

Deadly legacy of coal mining: a thousand new black lung disease cases

An NPR investigation identified nearly 1,000 new cases in Appalachia of the most severe form of black lung disease. The government’s surveillance system recorded just a fraction of them.

Mining is one of the most dangerous jobs in America, with more than 600 workers dying in fatal workplace incidents between 2004 and the beginning of July. And many more miners die long after they’ve left the mines from occupational illnesses such as black lung disease, while others live with the debilitating aftermath of workplace injuries. Today, researchers know a great deal about the health risks miners face on the job, but some pretty big gaps remain.

Moans and groans about OSHA silica rule, but reality check by Democrats

“Bad math” and “slippery language” is how Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI) characterized some of the testimony at this week’s congressional hearing on OSHA’s new silica regulation.

Who’s saying what about OSHA’s new silica standard

Here are some of my favorite quotes in response to OSHA publishing a final rule on silica dust.

Who’s paying the cost of lung transplants for work-related lung diseases?

Some disabled coal miners have received lung transplants as a treatment for black lung disease. It’s clearly a work-related illness, but workers’ compensation insurance doesn’t seem to be paying the bill for the $1 million procedure.

Occupational Health News Roundup

Reporters at the Center for Public Integrity investigate the nation’s third wave of asbestos disease; garment workers in Bangladesh continue to fight for safety and dignity in the workplace; Seattle becomes the first U.S. city to allow Uber drivers to organize; and OSHA sends its silica rule to the White House.

The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration is no stranger to budget cuts — the agency is already so underfunded that it would take its inspectors nearly a century, on average, to visit every U.S. workplace at least once. In some states, it would take two centuries. Unfortunately, appropriations bills now making their way through Congress don’t bode much better for OSHA.

Donald Rasmussen: Coal miners’ physician, humble man

Dr. Donald Rasmussen, 87, spent more than 50 years in Appalachia treating coal miners with lung disease. He was at the forefront of efforts during the 1960’s to challenge the establishment’s views that exposure to coal mine dust damaged miners’ lungs.

Occupational Health News Roundup

New investigative series examines the toll of occupational illness and the lack of federal protections; OSHA steps up its efforts to protect nurses; women janitors face sexual assault and rape risks on the night shift; and IKEA reports that raising wages worked so well, the company is set to raise them again.