Sunday, September 27, 2015

Strippers can take you breath away - permanently

Methylene chloride, also called dichloromethane, is the solvent common in many paint strippers.  The widely available products with labels that warn of cancer risks but do not make clear the possibility of rapid death. In areas where the fumes can concentrate, workers and consumers risk asphyxiation or a heart attack while taking care of seemingly routine tasks. has researched the many deaths that have occurred while using these products and the report can be found here:  It's a lengthy read, but it could save your life.

In the fine print of most labels they manufacturers allude to the precautions necessary when using their products, but without a magnifying glass and good lighting, the labels are often difficult to read and easily ignored.  While these products can be bought at home-improvement and general retail stores across the U.S., the specialty respirators and polyvinyl-alcohol gloves needed to handle them safely are not usually available from those same retailers.  OSHA and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health say only a full-face respirator with a separate air supply, or exhaust ventilation to remove the fumes, will provide sufficient protection.

Setting aside longer-term health concerns, such as cancer, the danger posed by methylene chloride is its one-two punch when fumes accumulate. Because it turns into carbon monoxide in the body, it can starve the heart of oxygen and prompt a heart attack. The chemical also acts as an anesthetic at high doses, so its victims slump over, no longer breathing, because the respiratory centers of their brains switch off.


Thursday, September 24, 2015

OSHA Safety Violations upheld in death of camerawoman Sarah Jones

2015-10-15 - Sarah Jones, was a 27-year-old camera assistant when she was killed while trying to escape an oncoming freight train during the filming of a scene on February 20, 2014, for the movie “Midnight Rider,” a biopic based on the life of musician Gregg Allman. Eight other workers were injured.

OSHA cited Film Allman LLC in August 2014 for one willful and one serious safety violation for exposing employees to struck-by and fall hazards.

Judge Sharon D. Calhoun of the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission (OSHRC) upheld those citations on September 15.

“Bad management decisions have real and lasting consequences, and when those decisions involve safety, the consequences can be tragic,” said Kurt Petermeyer, OSHA’s regional administrator for the southeast. “The death of Sarah Jones is particularly disheartening because it was entirely preventable.”

Petermeyer went on to say that Film Allman’s management “blatantly disregarded their obligation to ensure the safety of their crew and cast. They were fully aware that the railroad tracks were live, and that they did not have permission to film there. “

He added that while the OSHRC’s decision cannot correct or reverse the events of February 20, 2014, “we hope that it will serve as a reminder to the film industry that safety has an important, necessary role on every set and in every workplace.”

People gather in Los Angeles at the International Cinematographers Guild national offices on March 7, 2014
during a candlelight walk and memorial for Sarah Jones.

The backstory about this tragic incident can be found at:

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

LDI 2015 Talks about Safety in the Entertainment Industry

Nancy Malette, senior manager, Occupational Health and Safety, for Cirque du Soleil will lead a panel discussion with other industry experts at LDI.  The session is titled 'Creating a Safety Culture in Entertainment' will be Saturday, Octorber 24, 11:00AM to 12:30PM at the Las Vegas Convention Center room N256.  Go to for more information and registration for session number PT06.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Fire Door Safety Week - Jim Morrison would be proud

Lori Greene, blogger at IDigHardware! is a great resource for all things relating to fire doors, and her most recent post at LinkedIn is no exception.  Check it out: (or if you are not a LinkedIn member, go to:  Some of Lorrie's past posts can also be found at The Building Code Forum
 Get them Inspected, Detected, and if necessary, Rejected

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

They left Zombies off the list, but other than that - its all good advice.

September is National Preparedness Month.  Visit the FEMA web site at

There is really very little difference between preparing for Zombies and Floods, Fires, and Storms
(Well, except that Kill the Zombie thing).

Batteries, Water, Food, First Aid, PPE, and a Communications Plan

With the proper Safety Planning, you may never need these things.

This is the goal:  Prevent Accidents and Injuries BEFORE THEY HAPPEN.

Check yourself.

Don't expect others to do it for you.  You are your best first defense against stupid - or worse.