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Sunday, September 26, 2010

NYS Labor Department Issues Stop Work Order in Lockport

Re-enactment of the Gunfight at the O.K. Corra...Image via WikipediaIt seems Mr. Scott Krzyzanowski, the owner of 89 Mill Street in Lockport, does not know New York State has one of the strictest asbestos regulations in the country.  He has been told by the New York State Department of Labor numerous times to hire an asbestos contractor to cleanup the "eyesore" at 89 Mill Street, Lockport, NY.  It appears he is ignoring the Department of Labor and they have issued a "Stop Work Order" on the project.  If he continues to ignore the Department of Labor he will be subject to penalties and jail time.  It looks like a showdown at the OK Corral will be happening.  We will see who blinks first?
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Friday, September 24, 2010

Future Environment Designs Sponsors Asbestos Video

Future Environment Designs sponsored this video to assist with Keeping Your Family Safe by being aware about the dangers of Asbestos.  Realize New York State and New York City asbestos regulations are some of the strongest in the country and both regulate residential asbestos isnpections, removal, and monitoring.

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Monday, September 20, 2010

Friday, September 17, 2010

9/11 Responder Helping First Responders And War Veterans Heal

Helping first responders heal from Long Island Business News on Vimeo.

John Sferazo, former 9/11 First Responder Ironworker, founded the non-profit organization American Greenlands Restoration.  John Sferazo as a first responder knows what 9/11 first responders went through, he himself suffers from severe lung problems and post-tramautic stress syndrome.  The American Greenlands Restoration uses 1,000 acres of land in Maine as a wildlife and nature retreat to help 9/11 first responders and veterans from the Iraq and Afganistan Wars sufferring from psychological and physical disabilities, heal through Nature Therapy.  Just a warning the video is not very good.  But you can hear the report all the same.
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Thursday, September 16, 2010

Painting and Decorating Inc. Fined Again for Scaffold Violations

Proper scaffold construction starts on the ground in the first bay.  If the first bay is plumb and level, the rest of scaffold will follow. 
Painting & Decorating Inc. was in the news again for scaffold violations. The painting and stucco contractor continues to have problems properly erecting scaffolds and providing fall protection for its workers. The violations stem from two Kings Point, New York job sites.

Painting & Decorating Inc. was issued eight willful citations with $200,000 in fines for not fully planking scaffolds, providing an access ladder, ensuring scaffolds rested on base plates and providing fall protection at both locations.  Six serious citations with $5,200 in fines were issued for missing railings, toeboards and bracing at both job sites.  Painting & Decorating was issued one repeat citation carrying a $20,000 fine for not training workers on scaffold assembly and work.  The citation is a repeat offense for Painting & Decorating who had similar violations in 2007 and 2008.  In 2008, Painting & Decorating received seven citations from OSHA worth $147,000.

OSHA issued Painting & Decorating, Inc a total of 15 citations worth $225,200 in fines for these two jobsites in Kings Point, New York. The contracting firm has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, meet with OSHA’s area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

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Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Future Environment Designs sponsors PCB video

In addition, to sponsoring this video to assist with Keeping Your Family Safe by being aware about Poly-Chlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs).  We want you to be aware that New York Communities for Change is calling on the New York City Board of Education to test all schools for possible PCB contamination and devise an aggressive plan for remediation.  After watching the video click on the title to learn more about New York Communities for Change's demand.
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Saturday, September 11, 2010

Long Overdue Increase in OSHA Inspections

Construction Sign Postings in Rome, Italy.  Workers are required to  wear gloves, hard hat, work boots, and a full body harness on this work site.

14 deaths per day is the statistics of the day.  How can the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) consider itself successful with a statistic like that?  It is long overdue for OSHA to increase the number of inspections and the number of violations it issues.  There are companies who have never seen an OSHA inspection and they have been in business for over 50 years.  We did a training class where one worker had caustic burns on his hands and three workers were diagnosed with silicosis.  The company had never been inspected by OSHA.  Until OSHA actually gets serious about performing the number of inspections necessary to  prevent injuries, statistics such as 14 deaths per day will continue to be common place.  The link shows a video of a worker for Cintas, handling the clearing of a blockage the way he was taught to clear blockage.  Though the company says it didn't know this was going on, the question is how did they think the blockage was being cleared considering they did not teach the workers a different procedure to clear the blockage.  Again another situation where the accident could have been prevented and the life of a worker saved.
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Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Confined Space Entry Mistakes Caused Tarrytown Tragedy?

OSHA has specific requirements and rules before entering confined spaces. Air testing and training are part of the requirements.

The death of two men in Tarrytown are still being investigated, however, indications are that the men died when they entered into a sewer system manhole and were overcome by the gases or the lack of air in the area.  Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and  the New York State Department of Labor under Public Employee Safety and Health (PESH) both regulate entries into confined spaces.  These entries require a permit system which is the equivalent of a checklist that is required to be completed by a supervisor before anyone enters the confined space.  One of the most important parts of the checklist is the requirement to test the air in the space before entry to determine the contaminants in the space.  As outsiders looking in, we could assume oxygen deficiency, methane, and hydrogen sulfide at least.  All three should have been tested before entry was made.  News reports already have told us the space was deficient of oxygen (14%), normal air has 21% oxygen.  Future Environment Designs performs confined space entry training and we train workers that at 14% workers would experience increased respiration and poor judgment.  We also train workers that the attendant should never make an entry (for rescue or any other purpose) until they are relieved by another attendant.  Our condolences go out to the family and the community of these workers.  It is a shame that this accident could have been prevented.
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OSHA Publishes Final Rule On Cranes And Derricks In Construction

Crane in Venice, Italy.  FED's training at your convenience will travel to where you need the training.

Some people would say its about time the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) revised the Cranes and Derricks in Construction standard.  The last standard was issued in 1971 and considering in 2007 a number of crane accidents happened across the country including the two crane accidents that happened in New York City.  It is not surprising that OSHA finally finished the standard.  The rule becomes effective in 90 days after August 9, 2010.  Significant requirements in this new rule include: a pre-erection inspection of tower crane parts; use of synthetic slings in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions during assembly/disassembly work; assessment of ground conditions; qualification or certification of crane operators; and procedures for working in the vicinity of power lines.

Several provisions have been modified from the proposed rule. For example:

  • Employers must comply with local and state operator licensing requirements which meet the minimum criteria specified in § 1926.1427.
  • Employers must pay for certification or qualification of their currently uncertified or unqualified operators.
  • Written certification tests may be administered in any language understood by the operator candidate.
  • When employers with employees qualified for power transmission and distribution are working in accordance with the power transmission and distribution standard (§ 1910.269), that employer will be considered in compliance with this final rule's requirements for working around power lines.
  • Employers must use a qualified rigger for rigging operations during assembly/disassembly.
  • Employers must perform a pre-erection inspection of tower cranes.
The final rule was designed to work with state and local regulations.  Interesting change from what OSHA typically does.

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Wednesday, September 01, 2010

NYS Mold Task Force Report Open For Comments

Stachybotrys chartrum (toxic mold) growing inside the wall.
New York State Mold (fungi) Task Force was created by Section 1384 of the New York State (NYS) Public Health Law (enacted in Chapter 356 of the laws of 2005; amended by Chapter 198 of the laws of 2006).  The Task Force was charged with preparing a report to the Governor and the Legislature on mold (fungus)/toxic mold.  The report would assess and measure, "based on scientific evidence, the adverse environmental and health effects of mold exposure, including specific effects on population subgroups at greater risk of adverse effects; assessing the latest scientific data on mold exposure limits; identifying actions taken by state and local government and other entities; determining methods to control and mitigate mold."  The New York State Departments of Health and State have completed a draft report (click on the title link) and are accepting comments from the public  until October 12, 2010.   Comments can be submitted by email to:

Comments can be submitted in writing to:

Michelle Lavigne
Bureau of Toxic Substances Assessment
Flanigan Square Room 330
547 River Street
Troy, NY 12280

Questions: (518) 402-7820 or 1-800-458-1158

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Chrysotile Asbestos Banned? More Like Certain Conditions of Use Will Be Eventually Banned!

Many of you, as did I, read about the " Ban of Chrysotile Asbestos " and rejoiced over something long overdue.  However, after rea...