Canadian Occupational Safety

June/July-2018

Canadian Occupational Safety (COS) magazine is the premier workplace health and safety publication in Canada. It's packed with OHS news, event listings, articles from industry experts and videos. Home of Canada's Safest Employers award.

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JUNE/JULY 2018 27 TOOLS OF THE TRADE PRODUCTS & SERVICES The latest OHS innovations and industry updates Dekra's exposure-based safety technology goes beyond BBS Dekra Organizational Safety and Reliability has launched a new technology, Exposure Based Safety (EBS), a standard beyond behaviour-based safety. The Exposure Based Safety technology is a new approach to reducing risks in the work- place, fueled by new science and technology. Fundamentally, it is based on understand- ing the interaction between employee behaviour and the workplace environment — which can lead to injury — and intro- duces cutting-edge elements to mitigate risk. With EBS, organizations will have access to the latest mobile and dashboard technology. Furthermore, EBS technology incorporates new knowledge on brain- centric hazards from neuroscience and better addresses exposures that can lead to life-altering or life-ending injuries, the company said. "We wanted to bring an updated behaviour-based safety (BBS) application to market… Coupled with our own experience and research from the University of Cambridge, we uncovered the key elements that produce results the fastest with the least effort. The launch of our EBS technology is an elegant combination of science and technology, an upgrade to all behaviour- based safety processes that have come before it," said Ted Apking, president of Dekra Organizational Safety and Reliability. E xposure Based Safet y technolog y enhances t he organizational safet y approach through education, skills training and in-the-field coaching and guidance, Dekra said. "What used to take months under the pre- vious BBS models will only take weeks with EBS technology. Now, safety leaders will be able to engage all members within their teams to enable observations and feedback to start faster, leading to quicker behaviour change and reduced exposure," added Jim Heinzman, principal consultant at Dekra Organizational Safety and Reliability. As an introduction to the technology, Dekra published a new white paper, Moving Beyond Behavior: 4 Steps to Creating an Exposure Focus in Your Safety System, which covers why it's time to move beyond behaviour to target exposure; the factors that contribute to injury exposure; how leaders can create a safety system that combats exposure; and what exposure management looks like at each organizational level. Keen's new outsole features micro-glass filaments for better grip Keen's Polar Traction outsole features micro-glass filaments creating a "micro-cleat" effect that pierces the surface of wet or oily ice, improving traction. The low-temperature, flex-resistant rubber compound offers flexibility in cold temperatures, ensuring better performance and grip in some of the harshest environments. The outsole delivers remarkable traction without increasing weight or bulk for the wearer, said Keen. Since slips, trips and falls is the number 1 reported safety concern in work environments, Keen is continually evaluating its rubber com- pounds. It saw a need in the marketplace for footwear that extended beyond non-slip standards into extreme temperatures and conditions — and the Polar Traction was born. "A solution to improve performance, functionality and reduce mental stress while working and walking on ice and frigid surfaces was key — helping to keep workers safe and allow them to focus on the job at hand instead of worrying that they might slip or fall and hurt themselves," said Robin Skillings, director of global marketing for Keen Utility in Portland, Ore. With Canada being home to some of the most extreme cold-weather working environments in North America, it's critical for safety managers to help staff identify the type of personal protective gear that not only protects on the job site but also within the working environment, Keen said. "Safety and occupational health managers have an acute understanding of the unique challenges of their work - ing environments. The innovation of Keen Polar Traction helps solve the issue of traction and stability in these conditions and provides another tool for managers to help keep their employees safe and sure-footed with every step they take," said Skillings. Currently, in Canada, the Polar Traction outsole is incorporated into the Davenport 8-inch insulated waterproof work boot as well as the Midland 10-inch waterproof internal metatarsal work boot. The company has plans to incorporate it into four additional new styles available for consumers in August. FR recycling program offers less waste, greater protection A Vancouver-based company, General Recycled, has saved 100,000 flame-resistant (FR) garments from ending up in the landfill. The company recy- cles FR aramid fabrics, known under brand names such as Nomex, Kevlar and Kermel. But an unexpected side effect of this planet- friendly initiative is that the recycled fabric offers a greater protection level than the original. Gen- eral Recycled's 30 per cent post-consumer recycled blend surpasses CAN/CGSB 155.20 for flash fire protection and NFPA 70E for electrical arc flash protection. During the standard three-second flash fire test, the garments achieved a 7.3 per cent second-degree burn and zero third-degree burn. Up to 40 per cent is allowed under the CGSB standard and a maximum of 50 per cent is allowed for NFPA. After a four-second test, General Recycled's garments performed significantly better than a treated cotton, so the company decided to test the garment at five seconds, despite the fact that the testers at the University of Alberta tried to talk them out of it, said Dave Kasper, General Recycled's vice-president of sales. "They said, 'You're crazy, nobody's ever done this. You're going to blow our mannequin.' But we convinced them to do it," he said. The result after a five-second flash fire test was a 21.3 per cent second-degree burn and zero third-degree burn. "We just blew their minds. That is without question better than anything on the market," Kasper said, citing as an example the virgin Nomex IIIA, which achieved 43.4 per cent second-degree burn after a four second test. General Recycled has determined how its fabric offers superior protection, but it's not sharing that company secret. The recycling program starts with employers shipping their old and no longer suitable FR workwear to General Recycled. While many might not be aware of it, there is a cost associated with disposing of FR garments — clean- ing, handling, bin renting etc. — and General Recycled's program is often slightly less expensive than a company's current system, said Kasper. Next, General Recycled ensures the garments are dry-cleaned, stripped of all zippers and snaps and shredded into a workable fibre. Once the garments are shredded, the recycled fibre is blended with virgin FR fibre, creating a unique inherent flame resistant yarn with a 30 per cent post-consumer recycled blend. The yarn is used to weave a 7-ounce inherent FR fabric, which is provided to manufacturers that will make FR products, such as coveralls, jackets, pants and other workwear. The finished garments are then shipped to the employer. This workwear can be recycled again and again. Major employers have already gotten on board with General Recycled's program, such as Imperial Oil, Suncor, Syncrude, Schlumberger and Pratt & Whitney Aircraft. Approximately 4,500 tons of FR garments are disposed of every year in Canada, according to calculations by General Recycled. Aramid garments cannot be incinerated due to their chemical structure, so landfill is the only option. The problem, however, is that landfill operators are starting to refuse FR aramid garments because they don't break down. Proposed federal legislation — the Canada-wide Action Plan for Extended Producer Responsibility — would hold all manufacturers accountable for the proper disposal of their hazardous products. Recycling FR garments solves this potential disposal conundrum for employers, and also helps them with their corporate social responsibility and environmental stewardship — or green — goals. Garments made with General Recycled's FR fabric can be purchased through Apparel Solutions in Edmonton.

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