Sandy Smith

EHS Today

Sandy Smith is editor-in-chief of EHS Today magazine, a Penton Media Inc. publication. She has been writing about occupational safety and health and environmental issues since 1990. She has been interviewed about occupational safety and health for documentaries and television programs, has served as a panelist on roundtables, has provided the keynote address for occupational safety and health conferences and has won national and international awards for her articles.

Brooklyn Construction Company Owner Indicted for Manslaughter

The owner of a Bedford-Stuyvesant construction company and his businesses have been indicted on manslaughter and other charges after a wall collapsed at an excavation site, killing construction worker Fernando Vanegaz and injuring two others.

58 Percent of Construction Workers Say Safety Takes a Backseat to Productivity

A National Safety Council survey found 58 percent of Americans working in construction – the industry that sees the most workplace fatalities each year – feel that safety takes a backseat to productivity and completing job tasks. What’s more, 51 percent say management does only the minimum required by law to keep employees safe, and 47 percent say employees are afraid to report safety issues.

Mechanical Miracles [Photo Gallery]

When UC Berkley Professor Homayoon Kazerooni arrived from Iran to America in the late 1970s, he had just a few hundred bucks in his pocket. He also had big dreams.

Those dreams have translated into an invention that allowed people to walk again after paralyzing accidents and illnesses. Called the eLEGS, the device was a medical exoskeleton that restores the ability of paraplegics, MS patients and stroke victims to walk.

Are Injuries Still the ‘Cost of Doing Business’ at Some Companies? 2

New research conducted by Professors Judson Caskey of the UCLA Anderson School of Management and Naim Bugra Ozel from the Naveen Jindal School of Management at UT Dallas and published in the Journal of Accounting and Economics finds that managers of U.S. companies facing market pressures to meet earnings expectations may risk the health and safety of workers to please investors.

Sandy Says: What Should Be the Cost To Employers Who Ignore Their Responsibilities?

Robert Higgins and Kelvin Mattocks went to work on a fall day in Boston, just like any other day. On that day – Oct. 21, 2016 – the approximately 12-foot deep, unshored trench in which they were working collapsed, trapping them in soil up to their waists.

As their coworkers scrambled to dig them out, an adjacent fire hydrant supply line snapped, filling the trench with water. Despite the desperate efforts of their coworkers, the men died at the scene.

President Steven E. Lacey: New Challenges and Opportunities for AIHA

Dr. Steven Lacey is a busy man. His day job is associate professor and chair of the Department of Environmental Health Science at the Indiana University (IU) Fairbanks School of Public Health in Indianapolis.

Superheroes of Safety: Who Is Your Safety Inspiration? 1

Who inspired you in the past or inspires you now to work safe and work smart? Whose name pops into your mind if I ask: “Who do you consider to be an EHS leader?” “Who motivated you to become a safety professional?” or “Who engages your brain when it comes to occupational safety and health?”

Ohio Auto Insulation Manufacturer Faces $500,000+ in Fines Following Amputation of Worker's Hand 1

An auto insulation manufacturer in suburban Toledo faces $569,463 in proposed penalties following an OSHA investigation triggered by a report that a machine amputated a 46-year-old worker’s right hand, wrist and part of his forearm two days before Christmas.

Spokane Business Fined More than $150k for Exposing Employees to Ammonia Leaks

The Washington Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) has fined Johanna Beverage Co. $154,000 for multiple willful, serious and general workplace safety violations related to three ammonia leaks at the facility.

In each of the three incidents, when the leaks occurred, employees were unsure what to do, which way to run to escape the corrosive vapors and how to call for emergency help. In one situation last August, panicked employees ran downwind of the leak into the vapor cloud. Eight employees were exposed; one was sickened and taken to the hospital.

Governors Urge President Trump to Stay in Paris Climate Agreement

Following climate marches by hundreds of thousands of Americans over the weekend, 12 U.S. governors are urging President Donald Trump to remain in the Paris Climate Agreement and keep the United States’ commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 26-28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025.

The governors of California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Minnesota, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia and Washington signed onto the letter, which was sent to the White House on May 3.

Cal/OSHA Cites Building Supply Company for Fatal Forklift Accident

On Nov. 21, 2016, a 60-year-old forklift operator was transferring building supplies from the Good View Roofing & Building Supply Corp.’s warehouse to a customer’s vehicle. When the forklift descended a sloped ramp, a bag of mortar mix fell off of the load and blocked the front right wheel.

R. Alexander Acosta Sworn in as Secretary of Labor

R. Alexander Acosta was sworn in on April 28 to be the 27th U.S. Secretary of Labor. Acosta served in three presidentially appointed, Senate-confirmed positions previously. In 2002, he was appointed to serve as a member of the National Labor Relations Board, where he participated in or authored more than 125 opinions. In 2003, he was appointed assistant attorney general for the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice, and from 2005 to 2009 he served as the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida.

Rockford Systems Launches ‘Selfie for Safety’ Campaign

Recognizing that the future of American manufacturing lies with today’s youth – also known as Generation Z – Rockford Systems LLC has launched the “Selfie for Safety” campaign to help raise student awareness of the importance of machine safeguarding and to help fund the upgrading of safety equipment in the machine shops of several high schools in Rockford, Ill., where the company's headquarters is located.

The 2017 America’s Safest Companies Application Is Now Available!!!

Who leads safety at your company?

We take care of what we own. When every employee and every department owns a piece of safety, the corporate culture – not just the safety culture – changes for the better.

Since 2002, more than 200 companies have been honored by EHS Today for their occupational safety, health, environmental and risk management efforts by being named one of America’s Safest Companies. Safety is everyone’s business at these companies, from the newest hire to the CEO and the chairman of the board.

Dying at Work in California: 388 Workers Didn’t Come Home

Recently released data show 388 workers were killed on the job in California in 2015, more than one per day. This and other findings are included in a report released today by Worksafe, an Oakland-based worker health and safety organization, to commemorate Workers Memorial Day 2017, an international day of remembrance for workers who have been killed and injured at work.

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