Volume No. 46
OSHA Publishes Final Standard on Hexavalent
The United States Department of Labor, Occupational Safety
and Health Administration (USDOL/OSHA) issued a final standard for occupational
exposure to hexavalent chromium in the February 28, 2006 Federal Register. This
standard covers occupational exposure to hexavalent chromium [Cr (VI)] in
general industry, construction and shipyards. This standard was published in
accordance with the timetable established by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the
Third Circuit, which in April 2003 ordered OSHA to promulgate a standard
governing work place exposure to hexavalent chromium. The standard covers
approximately 558,000 workers and is expected to result in 40-140 avoided lung
cancers per year among exposed workers.
Hexavalent chromium compounds are widely used in the chemical industry as
ingredients and catalysts in pigments, metal plating and chemical synthesis. Cr
(VI) can also be produced when welding on stainless steel or Cr (VI) painted
surfaces. The major health effects associated with the exposure to Cr (VI)
include lung cancer, nasal septum ulcerations and perforation, skin ulcerations,
asthma, and allergic and irritant contact dermatitis.
OSHA establishes the Chromium (VI) under 19Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office.Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office26 for general industry,
1915.Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office26 for shipyards, marine terminals and longshoring and 1926.1126 for
construction. For the purpose of this article, it will discuss some of the
requirements under 19Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office.Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office26 for general industry. For shipyards and
construction please refer to those standards for specific requirements.
The information provided in this article is a non-exhaustive overview of the
USDOL-OSHA Chromium (VI) Standard 19Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office.Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office26. The reader should obtain and review
19Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office.Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office26 to ensure compliance with this OSHA established regulation.
Chromium (VI) [hexavalent chromium or Cr (VI)] means chromium with a valence of
positive six, in any form and in any compound. The major requirements under
19Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office.Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office26 are as follows:
(a) Scope. Standard applies to occupational exposures
to chromium (VI) in all forms and compounds in general industry. For exemptions
please refer to the standard.
(b) Definitions. The standard establishes an action level, which means a
concentration of airborne chromium (VI) of 2.5 micrograms per cubic meter of air
(2.5 ug/m3) calculated as an 8-hour time-weighted average (TWA).
Employee exposure means the exposure to airborne chromium (VI) that would occur
if the employee were not using a respirator. This is not a complete list of
definitions found in the standard.
(c) Permissible exposure limit (PEL). The employer shall ensure that no
employee is exposed to an airborne concentration of chromium (VI) in excess of 5
micrograms per cubic meter of air calculated as an 8-hour time-weighted average
(d) Exposure Determination General. Each employer who has a workplace or
work operation covered by this section shall determine the 8-hour TWA exposure
to chromium (VI).
(e) Regulated areas. The employer shall establish a regulated area
wherever an employee’s exposure to airborne concentrations of chromium (VI) is
or can reasonably be expected to be excess of the PEL.
(f) Methods of compliance. (1) Engineering and work practice controls.
Except as permitted in this paragraph, the employer shall use engineering and
work practice controls to reduce and maintain employee exposure to chromium (VI)
to or below the PEL unless the employer can demonstrate that such controls are
not feasible. Then the employer shall reduce them to the lowest levels
achievable and shall supplement them by the use of respiratory protection that
complies with the requirements of paragraph (g) of the section. Note: The
employer shall not rotate employees to different jobs to achieve compliance with
(g) Respiratory protection. Refer to the conditions in the standard when
the employer shall provide respiratory protection to the employees. Also, where
a respirator is required by the standard the employer shall institute a
respiratory protection program in accordance with 29 CFR 19Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office.134.
(h) Protective work clothing and equipment. Where a
hazard is present or likely to be present from skin or eye contact with chromium
(VI), the employer shall provide appropriate personal protective equipment at no
cost to employees and shall ensure that employees use such equipment and
clothing. Refer to the standard for additional requirements.
(i) Hygiene areas and practices. Where protective clothing and equipment
is required, the employer shall provide change rooms in conformance with 29 CFR
19Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office.141. Also, where skin contact occurs the employer shall provide washing
facilities in accordance with 29 CFR 19Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office.141.
(j) Housekeeping. The employer shall ensure that all surfaces are
maintained as free as practicable of accumulations of chromium (VI). For further
requirements refer to the paragraph in the standard.
(k) Medical surveillance. The employer shall make medical surveillance
available at no cost to the employee, and at a reasonable time and place for all
employees who are or may be occupationally exposed to chromium (VI) at or above
the action level for 30 or more days a year, experiencing signs or symptoms of
adverse health effects associated with chromium (VI) exposure, or exposed in an
(l) Communication of chromium (VI) hazards to employees. In additional to
the requirements of the Hazard Communication Standard 19Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office.1200, the employer
must ensure that employees can demonstrate knowledge of the requirements of this
paragraph. Reference this paragraph for further details.
(m) Recordkeeping. The employer shall maintain an accurate record of all
air monitoring, historical monitoring data, objective data, and medical
surveillance records which comply with this section.
(n) Dates. The effective date of this standard is May 30, 2006. The
start-up dates for all provisions of the standard except engineering controls
are as follows:
For employers with 19 or fewer employees - May 30, 2007
For all others - November 27, 2006
The start-up date for engineering controls for all employers is May 31, 20Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office.
In summary the CONN-OSHA office provides free consultations to public and
private sector employers. These consultations help employers recognize and
control workplace hazards as well as prevent injuries, illnesses and fatalities.
If you would like help in complying with the OSHA Chromium (VI) Standard
19Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office.Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office26, or other OSHA Standards, or wish to schedule a consultation contact
the CONN-OSHA office at (860-263-6900) or
Construction Safety: A Summary of Public Act
During the most recent legislative session, the Connecticut General Assembly
enacted Public Act Number 06-175. The act, which is effective October 1, 2006,
affects public building projects, financed in whole or in part by the state,
that cost $Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office0,000 or more. It requires verification that all employees
performing manual labor on or in such public buildings have completed a
construction safety and health course, as outlined in the act. For purposes of
the act, a “public building” is defined as a structure designed for the housing,
shelter, enclosure and support or employment of people, animals or property,
including sewage-treatment and water-treatment plants. Roads, bridges, parking
lots, and drainage systems are examples of projects that will not be impacted.
On or after July 1, 2007, contractors and subcontractors working on public
buildings will be required to furnish proof to the Labor Commissioner or the
Commissioner’s designee, within thirty days after the date the contract is
awarded, that their site employees have completed the ten-hour construction
safety and health training course. The training class must have met federal
Occupational Safety and Health Training Institute standards or, in the case of
telecommunications employees, they must have completed at least ten hours of
training in accordance with 29 CFR 19Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office.268. To avoid removal from the worksite,
employees found not to be in compliance with the training requirement have
fifteen days after notification of such noncompliance to provide documentation
of course completion to the Labor Department.
To view the act, go to:
A Review of Common Summer Hazards
Each year lightning kills an average of 67 people in the United States and
injures 300 more. Awareness of changing weather conditions could reduce that
number. Increasing wind, towering clouds with a "cauliflower" shape, flashes of
lightning, and radio static are signs of approaching storms. Lightning can
strike as far as Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office miles away from the rain area. If you can hear the thunder,
you are in the strike zone and should seek shelter. A building, not a lean-to or
picnic pavilion, would be considered a suitable structure and, if not available,
a car with a hard top and closed windows will do. Avoid anything connected to
the power network; telephones, plumbing fixtures and appliances can carry an
electric charge. Stay away from trees and towers, get off of the golf course and
if you are in a boat, get to land.
Ticks are blood feeding external parasites found in wooded areas and in tall
grass where they wait for a suitable host. The primary concern with a tick bite
is the potential exposure to diseases such as Lyme Disease, Rocky Mountain
Spotted Fever, or Ehrlichiosis. While in infested areas wear light colored
clothing, allowing you to easily see the tick. Tuck your pant legs into your
socks so that ticks cannot crawl up inside your pant legs, and use a chemical
repellent containing N, N-diethyl-m-toluamide (DEET) or Permethrin. To remove a
tick, use fine-point tweezers, grasp the tick just behind the point of
attachment and pull slowly and steadily until the tick is dislodged. Wash the
bite area, apply antiseptic and cover. State health officials report that the
number of tick related illnesses increased 34% last year and that number is
expected to increase.
Mosquitoes are blood feeding insects that act as carriers of West Nile Virus,
Malaria, Encephalitis, and Dengue Fever. Mosquitoes incubate their eggs in
stagnant water; reducing this environment helps control the population. The best
defense against the mosquito is to avoid being outside when they are actively
feeding, just before dawn and around sunset. If this is not possible, chemical
and natural insect repellents may be used as a defense.
The sun emits both visible light and three types of ultraviolet light (UVA, UVB,
UVC) which cannot be seen by humans. It is this unseen energy which causes skin
cancer in one of every five Americans and increases the chance of cataract
development. UVA and UVB rays are the only wavelengths that penetrate the
earth’s atmosphere and sunscreen and sunglasses should protect against both. If
you are going to be exposed to the sun, the protective measures that should be
taken include: wearing protective clothing, using sunscreen, wearing sunglasses,
avoiding exposure when the sun is the most intense (between 11am and 2pm).
Sunscreens were developed to block the damaging UV rays, which will increase the
amount of time that a person can be exposed without burning. For example, if
your skin starts to burn after Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office-minutes, using a sunscreen with a sun
protection factor (SPF) 2 will double that time to 20 minutes. Likewise SPF 4
increases that time to 40 minutes of protection. Broad spectrum sunscreen blocks
both UVA and UVB and should be applied according to the manufacturers
instructions. To protect your eyes, select and wear sunglasses that filter out
both UVA and UVB rays.
Heat Related Illnesses
Your body’s main heat release is sweating. As sweat evaporates from your skin it
takes the body’s excess heat with it. Problems arise when high temperatures and
humidity levels reduce evaporation rates hindering the heat removal process.
When it is hot, frequent rest periods and drinking non-alcoholic, decaffeinated
beverages, preferably water, every 15 to 20 minutes will ensure that the body
stays well hydrated. The symptoms of heat exhaustion are: headaches, dizziness,
lightheadedness, weakness, moist skin, mood changes, and upset stomach/nausea.
The symptoms of heat stroke are: dry hot skin without sweating, mental confusion
or losing consciousness, and seizures. If someone exhibits these symptoms, call
911, move the person to a cool area, loosen their clothing, and provide them
with cool water.
Poison Ivy and Poison Oak
Poison ivy and poison oak are identified by their leaves which are shiny and
clustered in groups of three. The oil urushiol is contained in the leaves,
stems, and roots. When people come in contact with these plants they may develop
contact dermatitis, an allergic reaction to the oil. Exposure occurs by direct
contact, indirect contact (touching tools, clothing, or animals), or by
inhalation (burning brush produces a smoky resin). When you come in contact with
the oil, wash your exposed skin thoroughly with soap and cool water as soon as
possible. Cool water is recommended, as warm water tends to open the pores of
the skin. The next best defense is preventing the oils from reaching the skin by
covering the skin with clothing or barrier creams.
Hazard Corner ...
Employee Struck and
Killed - Automobile Hits Worker While Extending Work Zone
A bridge maintenance crew consisting of four employees was cutting bridge
expansion joints in the northbound lanes of a four-lane highway for a future
asphalt reclamation project. The crew had set up a traffic pattern consisting of
cones and signage leading up to the work zone. All employees were wearing safety
vests. While work was proceeding on the bridge, two employees were expanding the
traffic pattern of cones to the next bridge. One employee was driving the
vehicle, while the other took cones off of the front of the vehicle and placed
them inside the divided line of the two northbound lanes. At this point, a
limousine crossed over the divided line and struck and killed the employee
placing the traffic cones. The impact caused the employee to be thrown to the
pavement. The employee was pronounced at the scene.
Compliance with the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) and OSHA
regulations is a necessary first step in providing a safe and healthy work zone
Ensure that a traffic control plan is in place prior to
work zone set up.
Ensure that the work zone is set up in accordance with the
Train employees on the MUTCD.
Close the road completely and reroute traffic where
Require all workers to wear high visibility safety apparel.
Summer Work Zone Safety
The Connecticut Department of Labor Conn-OSHA Division wants you and the
employees in the work zone to return home safely to their families. While
traveling this summer, you will encounter roadway work zone areas. You can make
this summer safer by remembering the following work zone safety tips:
Stay alert, expect the unexpected.
Don’t speed in work zones.
Obey the posted speed limits.
Allow ample space between you and the car in front of you.
Anticipate lane shifts – merge when directed to do so.
Avoid using mobile phones while driving in work zones.
Be especially alert at night while driving in work zones.
Expect delays, especially during peak travel times.
Work zones operate day and night. They can be moving or
stationary. You can recognize work zone areas because they are marked with
orange cones or barrels, concrete barriers, traffic control devices or vehicles
with flashers. Drive as if their lives depend on it, they do!
OSHA Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office-Hour Construction Class June 20, 27, 29, 2006
Sponsored by the Connecticut Chapter of the Associated Builders and Contractors,
Inc. (CT ABC). This course includes a copy of the OSHA regulation for the
Construction Industry, 29 CFR 1926. Attendees who complete the course will
receive a Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office-hour OSHA completion card. This class is being offered in Spanish
on June 3 and June Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office.
Lockout/Tagout –The Control of Hazardous Energy Sources July 11, 2006
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) standard for locking
out and tagging out equipment is 29 CFR 19Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office.147. It presents a minimum
performance standard for the control of hazardous energy. This introductory
class will take you through the various required sections of an effective
written lockout/tagout program.
Powered Industrial Trucks August 8 and September 8, 2006 Learn how to
meet OSHA’s Powered Industrial Truck Standard, 29 CFR 19Published by the Connecticut Department of Labor, Project Management Office.178. This 3-hour
workshop introduces participants to the standard and includes in-depth review of
operator training. Safe work practices will be covered, as well as other topics
not specifically addressed in the standard, including training tips and hazard
recognition. Written handout materials will be provided to assist in the
development of a site specific powered industrial truck training program.
OSHA 300 Recordkeeping September 15, 2006 Introduces the requirements
and procedures related to the OSHA 300 Log. The class will help develop skills
to accurately report occupational injuries and illnesses. Resources and
reference materials will be provided.
Breakfast Roundtable Discussion Group Third Tuesday of every month. These
free 90-minute workshops discuss safety and health issues in a supportive and
informal environment. The roundtable meetings are held from 8:15 am to 9:45 am.
The location and topics vary, be sure to call concerning the discussion subject
and the location. Pre-registration is required. For additional information or
to be placed on the distribution list, call John Able at (860) 263-6902 or send
an email to email@example.com
Classes are free and will be held at 200 Folly Brook
Boulevard, Wethersfield, CT in Conference Room A from 9 am - 12 noon, unless
otherwise noted. To register for any of these sessions, call John Able at (860)
263-6902 or send an email to
Pre-registration is required. Visit
April 17, 2018