October 13, 2023

Advisory council to discuss workplace safety, OSHA extends comment period for inspection representation rule and more

female inspector

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

Federal Advisory Council to discuss workplace safety considerations

The next Federal Advisory Council on Occupational Safety and Health (FACOSH) meeting will explore ways to enhance workplace safety. The meeting will focus on updates from the FACOSH subcommittee, how to better use federal reports to improve employee safety, OSHA regulatory updates and a presentation on new construction safety helmets. The virtual meeting is open to the public and scheduled for 1 p.m. EST on October 19.

OSHA extends comment period for inspection representation rule

OSHA is extending the public comment period on a proposed rule that would let employees designate someone who doesn’t work for their employer to represent them during an OSHA walkaround inspection. The agency is open to feedback on all parts of the rule but also has specific questions for the public. The comment period will remain open until November 13.

The Texas Department of Insurance, Division of Workers’ Compensation (DWC)

DWC offers hearing protection resources

To help employees protect their hearing while working, DWC offers five tips about recognizing dangerous noise levels and using personal protective equipment (PPE). In addition to these tips, the agency provides free resources, including safety videos, a sample hearing conservation program and a fact sheet.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

CDC recommends updated COVID-19 vaccines

For protection against serious illness from the COVID-19 virus, the CDC is recommending one dose of the 2023-2024 updated COVID-19 vaccines to everyone who is 5 years of age or older. Separate recommendations are made for children younger than 5 years of age and people who are immunocompromised.

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

New EPA rule requires reporting on almost 1,500 chemicals

The EPA has finalized a rule requiring manufacturers and importers of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) to report information on their use, exposures and hazards to help the agency better protect the public. The rule covers at least 1,462 PFAS and potentially impacts industries including construction, manufacturing, wholesale and retail trade, and waste management and remediation. This data will be due to the EPA within 18 months of the effective date of the rule.