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August 2016 Archives

Lower speed limits proposed for large vehicles

If a proposed regulation issued by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is enacted, then truck and bus drivers in Pennsylvania and throughout the country will have their speeds capped at a lower rate than that of other vehicles. It has been a decade since a nonprofit group, Roadsafe America, first suggested the lower speeds. The group was founded by a couple whose son was killed in 2002 by a tractor-trailer that was exceeding the speed limit.

OSHA guidance for employees at risk for Zika exposure

For Pennsylvania employees who are required to travel as part of their work, mosquito-borne diseases may be a risk. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration chas issued a guide that includes information about the disease to help employers prevent occupational exposure.

Mild brain injuries could lead to PTSD

A mild traumatic brain injury could increase the likelihood of developing post-traumatic stress disorder, according to a study. The discovery, which was published in the peer-reviewed Journal of Neurotrauma, could lead to better detection methods and treatments for TBI patients in Pennsylvania and nationwide.

When employees may seek workers' compensation benefits

If a Pennsylvania employee gets injured while on the job, the employer may be responsible for providing compensation for their recovery. However, there are a few types of workers who may not be covered under their employer's workers' compensation insurance. Examples include independent contractors and railroad workers. Employees should know if their employer has insurance and if they are potentially entitled to compensation if they must miss work because of their injury.

The dangers of drowsy driving

Motorists throughout Pennsylvania and the rest of the U.S. are at risk of being injured in accidents caused by drowsy drivers. A new report shows that almost 83.6 million people drive while they are drowsy every day. In 2015, almost 5,000 people were killed in accidents involving drowsy drivers.

Making worker safety a core value in Pennsylvania

Hot weather, sleep deprivation and irregular work schedules may all contribute to possible safety hazards at work. In 2013, employers incurred $62 billion in costs related to workplace accidents involving employees who missed six or more days of work as a result. This was according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics as well as the National Academy of Social Insurance. Falls and repetitive motion injuries were the cause of the majority of those costs.

Lawsuit prompts insurers to add brain injury clauses

Football fans in Pennsylvania and around the country may have heard that the National Football League recently agreed to pay up to $1 billion to settle a class action lawsuit filed by former players. The money will be used to compensate former players who have developed debilitating brain conditions like chronic traumatic encephalopathy and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Many legal experts feel that the maximum individual payout of $5 million allowed under the deal may actually be increased on appeal.

Studies shed light on distracted driving epidemic

Most motorists in Pennsylvania and around the country know that using mobile electronic devices while driving can be dangerous, but that knowledge does not seem to be enough to curb this type of behavior. A National Safety Council survey of 2,400 drivers found that the use of social media apps like Facebook, Twitter, and Snapchat was rampant, and more than a third of the motorists polled even said that they would not hesitate to watch YouTube videos while behind the wheel.

Dealing with mold in workplaces

For many Pennsylvania employees, mold in the workplace is a serious health hazard. Not only can it cause health problems in the respiratory system, but the symptoms can be so severe that people may be unable to get their work done. If the workplace is in a high-humidity area or the building is susceptible to water leaks and dampness, supervisors and managers should be on the lookout for mold.

Pennsylvania company unveils autonomous truck safety system

Highway maintenance and repair workers are often expected to perform their duties in close proximity to fast-moving traffic. Warning signs, arrow boards and reduced speed limits are their chief protection in these situations, but these measures alone cannot protect them completely from large and heavy semi-tractor trailers with fatigued or distracted drivers at the wheel. Self-driving vehicle technology has been lauded as having the potential to vastly reduce or even eliminate traffic accidents, and Pennsylvania-based Royal Truck & Equipment has unveiled an innovative new autonomous attenuator truck that it says could save the lives of road workers.