New OSHA Maritime Safety Publications
18 June 2013
OSHA has published a new InfoSheet on Toluene Safety in the Workplace. Toluene, also known as "methylbenzene", "phenylmethane" or "toluol", is a clear, colorless liquid used in paints, thinners, lacquers, metal cleaners, fingernail polish, glues and other products. The sweet-smelling chemical is highly flammable and may catch fire if exposed to heat or flames. For more information about how to prevent hazardous exposure to Toluene, including how and when to wear personal protective equipment, see the InfoSheet available in html or PDF.
Several new Fact Sheets and QuickCards are also available to help employers protect workers performing shipyard and longshoring activities. These resources are available online on OSHA's Maritime Industry publications page.
OSHA has developed a spirometry guidance document for occupational health professionals. Spirometry measures lung function, and is commonly used to evaluate workers' respiratory health and their ability to perform certain tasks or use personal protective equipment. For more information, see Spirometry Testing in Occupational Health Programs: Best Practices for Healthcare Professionals (PDF).
Three new fact sheets on hexavalent chromium exposure describe operations in which workers may be exposed to hexavalent chromium, summarize the known health effects, and provide recommendations for control measures to reduce worker exposures. The fact sheets are available in three industries: Aerospace/Air Transport, Bridge Painting, and Electroplating.
OSHA has also released a new fact sheet on welding fume that describes the types of welding, hazardous components of welding fume, health effects associated with exposure to welding fume and steps employers and workers can take to reduce exposure to welding fume.