News Briefs Week of Sept 20-26

Source: Wang Tom - 123RF/Sun News

Construction Worker Killed by Falling Lumber

UNION COUNTY, OH – A 53-year-old construction worker was killed after he was struck by lumber that had fallen off a skid steer.

Investigators say that several straps on a lumber bundle containing approximately 105 boards failed while being lifted by a skid steer.  An unknown number of 1x8x16 treated poplar boards struck the victim in the head and chest.

The victim, Rodney Hickman, was transported to a hospital where he later succumbed to his injuries.

OSHA is investigating the incident.

EPA Hurricane Florence Mold Warning – Following Hurricane Florence and the floods devastating the Carolinas, the EPA is warning that failure to remove contaminated materials and to reduce moisture and humidity can present serious long-term health risks.

Standing water and wet materials are a breeding ground for microorganisms, such as viruses, bacteria, and mold. They can cause disease, trigger allergic reactions and continue to damage materials long after the flood.

How to clean up your home after a flood, check out  EPA’s National Service Center for Environmental Publications (NSCEP).

Construction Worker Killed – A construction worker was killed in San Rafael when plywood fell on top of him at a construction site, according to police at the scene.  The accident occurred in the first block of Fair Drive, which was closed between Coleman Drive and Lincoln Avenue for the investigation.

The worker was reportedly sitting nearby when the plywood fell.

2017 Fire Statistics – More than 1.3 million fires were reported by fire departments in 2017, resulting in an estimated 3,400 civilian deaths, nearly 15,000 civilian injuries, and $23 billion in property loss.

According to the NFPA, there were also 80 civilian fire deaths in other residential occupancies, such as hotels, motels, dormitories, and boarding houses, for an increase of 23 percent compared to 2016. In addition, 105 civilians died in nonresidential structure fires, a decrease of 30 percent from the year before.

Of the 2,820 civilian deaths in structure fires, 280 (10 percent) died in fires that were intentionally set.

7th Inspection for Worker Injuries at Tesla

Cal/OSHA has opened an inspection into Tesla’s Fremont factory for the third time this month.

The latest inspection was opened Tuesday following a report made to the agency Friday of an accident, which occurred on Friday, in which a Tesla employee had part of a finger amputated while moving a rack of windshields onto a conveyor.

Cal/OSHA says the agency now has seven open inspections into Tesla.

HHS Awards Grants to Fight Opioid Epidemic

Units of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services awarded more than $1 billion in opioid-specific grants this week to help combat the crisis.

The awards support HHS’s Five-Point Opioid Strategy, which was launched last year and enhanced last week, according to the agency, which reported that new data suggests efforts are now yielding progress at the national level.

From January 2017 through August 2018, the amount of opioids prescribed in America has dropped by 21 percent, HHS reported. In the same time, the number of prescriptions filled for naloxone increased 264 percent, while the number of prescriptions for buprenorphine, one form of medication-assisted treatment, rose 16 percent (data from IQVIA’s Total Patient Tracker).

In 2017, opioids claimed more than 130 lives per day in the United States.