The Must List: Manufacturing Safety

Fast-moving belts, metal-crushing machinery, and scraps potentially flying every which way. In the manufacturing world, safety hazards are plentiful, but fortunately, so is the safety equipment designed to provide protection from the dangers of the job. Here, we’ve compiled a comprehensive list of all the equipment your facility should have on hand in order to keep your workers safe, and your assembly line running smoothly and efficiently.

Fit-for-Purpose Gloves – There’s no one-size-fits-all glove. You have to do a little research to figure out which types of glove properties will be most beneficial for your specific need. For example, welders, or those who work with hot metal on the line, are going to want to get their hands on—or in—a pair heat resistant gloves. If someone is working with sharp objects, they are going to need gloves made with cut resistant materials. Learn more about selecting the right gloves for the job.

Spectacular Spectacles – You never know when something on the assembly line could go awry—and that’s precisely why it’s so important to always be prepared with safety glasses. Explore the options for different colored lenses to ensure the best visibility for the specific work environment.

Ear Protection – With so many moving parts, assembly lines are LOUD. Protect employees’ short- and long-term hearing by providing ear plugs or muffs and encouraging them to wear ear protection at all times.

Steel-Toed, Non-Slip Boots – No matter how graceful you may be, no one is immune to the potential of slipping and falling. In fact, falling is the #1 hazard in the workplace, according to OSHA. But, with employees wearing the right boots, you can help to eliminate that risk. And, with steel toes, you can be sure to protect feet from harm, should something heavy or sharp be dropped.

Bonus Tip: Repetitive Motion Stretch – Working on the line is hard work. It requires undivided focus, impeccable attention to detail, and a plethora of repetitive tasks. Keep your workers at the top of their game by providing guidance and opportunities for repetitive motion stretching. Here’s a great resource for eliminating physical stress often caused by assembly line work.

Shutting down the line due to an injury simply isn’t worth it. And at the end of the day, the safety of your employees is what matters most. With US Standard Products as your safety equipment partner, you can ensure that safety remains your top priority, and reap the benefits as they trickle down to your bottom line.

About US Standard Products

At US Standard Products’ core, we believe in keeping workers across all industries safe from the dangers of the job, and do so by providing the highest quality operational and safety products. To stay up-to-date on the latest workplace safety news and trends, follow US Standard Products on social media:

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Heads Up! 3 Tips to Ensure Your Hard Hat is Safe.

When it comes to safety equipment, the hard hat arguably trumps all. Protecting one of your most critical body parts from impact, the structural integrity of your hard hat is of utmost importance. In fact, in 2012, 1,020 workers died from on-the-job head injuries, according to the National Safety Council. To help ensure your helmet is to the highest safety standards, we’ve put together the top three rules all hard-hat-wearing professionals should know.

1. Know When to Give Your Hat the Boot

As part of your daily routine, when getting suited up for the job, you should always be inspecting your hat for any type of damage—cracks, chips, dents, etc. Even with average wear and tear, hard hats aren’t meant to last forever. Every year or two you should be replacing your suspension, and every five years or so, it’s time to hang up your hat (literally), and invest in a new one.

2. Let it Be

We get it—hard hats might not be the most flattering safety gear, but that doesn’t mean it’s okay to take “sprucing it up” into your own hands. In fact, making modifications to your helmet can seriously affect its overall ability to protect your head during impact. Avoid making any of the following adjustments to your hard hat for maximum protection:

  • Wearing a baseball cap underneath – A cap can interfere with the suspension of your helmet—a risk not worth taking. Plus, most caps have metal or hard plastic pieces, which can incur even more damage should you hit your head on something. A safe alternative is a bandana.
  • Painting your helmet – Paint can chemically damage the shell of your helmet, which could lead to an increased risk of injury.

There are, however a few modifications that have been tested and proven to not affect the safety capabilities of hard hats. These include:

  • Using stickers – Give your hat a bit of personality with self-adhesive stickers, but avoid placing any near the edges – ¾ of an inch is a safe distance.
  • Wearing your helmet backwards – Not all helmets are safe to wear backwards, but many are. Check with the manufacturer and be sure to reverse the suspension before doing so.

3. Damaged Goods are No Good

In the unlucky event that you get a bump on the head while wearing your hard hat, you’ll want to play it safe and replace it immediately. Even if there isn’t any visible damage, the impact could have affected the suspension or compromised the integrity of the hat’s protecting capabilities.

At US Standard Products’ core, we believe in keeping workers across all industries safe from the dangers of the job, and do so by providing the highest quality operational and safety products. To stay up-to-date on the latest workplace safety news and trends, follow US Standard Products on social media:

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Avoiding Commercial Property Hazards

A safety checklist for building and property managers.

Compared to many labor-intensive jobs, office workers have it pretty easy—at least when it comes to taking rigorous safety precautions. While a spilled cup of coffee or an open file drawer can certainly cause harm, the dangers involved in office settings often pale in comparison to those present in industrial or manufacturing worksite environments.

But that doesn’t mean that commercial building and property managers are off the hook on the safety front. Even though office buildings aren’t typically equipped with heavy machinery, complicated equipment, and dangerous chemicals, there are still a number of hazards that tenants can face. Not only should you take action to keep those on your property safe, you also will want to take precautions against a potential lawsuit.

Here, we’ve put together a quick checklist to help those in charge of property maintenance keep their buildings, grounds, and tenants safe and sound.

Keep Parking Lots and Sidewalks Clear

To keep your walkways clear of snow and ice in the winter months, we can’t reiterate enough the importance of using ice melt. But even as the ground begins to thaw, you’ll need to be on the lookout for cracking pavement, potholes, and other structural issues that could pose a trip hazard. Year-round, be sure you’re regularly monitoring the condition of your grounds—patch up any problem areas, pick up trash, and make sure that traffic markers are clearly visible.

Prevent Indoor Falls

Falls are the #1 cause of office injury, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce. In fact, employees are 2.5x more likely to be injured from a fall in an office setting than anywhere else. Here are a number of tips to prevent falls indoors:

  • Provide small ladders or step stools for each office in your building—too often, tenants try to use dangerous swivel chairs to reach highly-placed items.
  • Be sure to line any potentially slippery surfaces, such as building entryways, with a skid-resistant treatment or carpet.
  • If your building has many sharp turns, place mirrors in the corners to help workers avoid collisions.
  • On multi-level buildings, stairwells are often neglected by cleaning crews. To ensure safety, make sure they’re consistently swept, and all handrails are in tact.
  • All trip and slip hazards—whether an exposed electrical cord, or a freshly mopped floor, should always be marked in yellow for maximum visibility.

Create a Hazard Reporting System

Property managers aren’t typically on-site at all times. To ensure that all potential dangers are noted and addressed, we recommend implementing a hazard reporting system. Whether you provide a comment box in the main lobby, or set up an online ticketing system, by offering workers the opportunity to share what they see, you’ll be able to maximize your awareness of potential problems and minimize the danger to tenants.

Need new safety supplies and equipment for your commercial property? US Standard Products is an industrial supplies distributor based in New Jersey. We provide a wide range of operational and safety necessities including ice melt, work gloves, and much more. To stay up-to-date on the latest workplace safety news and trends, follow US Standard Products on social media:

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Be in the Know: Safety Must-Reads

Explore a collection of interesting safety industry resources and insights from the U.S. Standard Products team.

OSHA under Trump: A closer look

With a new president and administration at the helm, manufacturing and industrial industries face potential shifts in OSHA’s worker safety regulations. Safety and Health Magazine takes a deep dive into how the new administration may impact OSHA and the industry overall.

Read Article

Five tips for reimagining safety traditions

We have endless data at our fingertips, and the potential for using it to advance safety processes is massive. Yet big data continues to be underutilized. Industrial Safety & Hygiene News explores how the manufacturing sector can use data to reinvent old processes and drive greater safety gains.

Read Article

The True Cost of Poor Worker Health is a C-Suite Issue

“The bottom line is that good health is good business–from the exam room to the board room,” Dr. Ron Loepke says—and that sentiment rings true especially for industrial organizations impacted by significant safety and health risks. EHS Today explores the implications of poor health in the workplace, and how business executives can make a change for the better.

Read Article


U.S. Standard Products is an industrial supplies distributor based in New Jersey. We provide a wide range of operational and safety necessities including ice melt, work gloves, and much more. To stay up-to-date on the latest workplace safety news and trends, follow U.S. Standard Products on social media:

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Cold Weather Gear Guide for Outdoor Workers

Everyone always complains about the cold in the winter, but did you know that frigid weather is actually more deadly than heat? A report by the National Center for Health Statistics reveals that winter cold kills twice as many Americans than summer heat. Each year, approximately 2,000 people die due to weather-related causes. Of that population, 63% of deaths are caused by exposure to cold and/or hypothermia, while only 31% are attributed to heat-related exposure such as heat or sun stroke.

That said, if your job requires you to work outside in the winter months, it’s even more critical for you to be prepared with the proper gear to keep you safe—not only from the dangers of the job—but also from the dangers of the cold. Here, we’ve compiled some of our top wardrobe tips to keep you safe and warm as you work outdoors this winter.

1. Dress in Layers

One of the worst things you can do when working outside in the cold is break a sweat. Once your clothes trap that moisture, there’s no drying out while you’re on the job—if and when you do cool back down, that moisture will feel mighty frigid.

The trick to avoid a freezing cold sweat? Dress in layers. That way, once you amp up your activity level, you can simply take off a layer to prevent getting over heated.

2. Pick Smart Materials

As you layer on your winter clothes, pay close attention to the materials of the fabrics and the order in which you put them on. The layer closest to the skin should be made of fabric that’s effective at wicking away moisture. Popular options include synthetic fabrics, merino wool, or bamboo.

Next, you’ll want to insulate. Choose materials such as wool, goose down, or fleece to keep warm. Last, you’ll want to protect yourself from the elements with a shell-like jacket—ideally, something that’s both waterproof and breathable.

3. Wear the Right Gloves for the Job

You probably already know that given your profession, there are specific features you should look for in gloves. Manual labor and civic maintenance professionals should be on the lookout for cut protection, impact protection, and multi-purpose gloves, while knit gloves are generally sufficient for landscapers. No matter your job, if you’re working outdoors in the winter, you should most definitely be wearing some sort of gloves, if not to protect your hands from your work, to protect them from the cold-related ailments such as frostbite.

4. Be Seen

It’s important to make yourself visible during all seasons, but wearing reflective gear is especially critical in the winter months, as the hours of daylight are shortened. Since it’s likely you’ll be working in the dark, consider investing in reflective gear with electronic light-up features. Flip them on to be sure you’re seen at all times.

U.S. Standard Products is an industrial supplies distributor based in New Jersey, providing operational and safety necessities ranging from ice melt to work gloves, and so much more. To stay up-to-date on the latest workplace safety news and trends, follow U.S. Standard Products on social media:

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Fall Protection Cited as #1 Workplace Hazard in 2016

According to new research released by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, fall protection takes the top spot as the most frequently cited workplace safety and health violation in 2016. The data was compiled from nearly 32,000 workplace inspections, and indicates several startling trends when it comes to on-the-job safety.

The entire list of top 10 workplace hazards for 2016 includes:

  1. Fall protection
  2. Hazard communication
  3. Scaffolds
  4. Respiratory protection
  5. Lockout/tagout
  6. Powered industrial trucks
  7. Ladders
  8. Machine guarding
  9. Electrical wiring
  10. Electrical, general requirements

With approximately three million workplace injuries, and more than 4,500 workplace deaths every year, this data is critical in helping organizations across the country hone in on the most predominant safety hazards and identify new ways to make workplaces safer.

One of the most important things companies should take away from the research is the fact that fall protection, along with scaffold and ladder safety, continues to be a major workplace hazard, as it has taken the top spot on the list year after year. Sure, accidents will happen, but with the proper training, safety equipment and adherence to the rules, organizations can make a difference in the number of fall-related injuries and deaths that occur each year. Check out our blog on how to prevent slips, trips and falls in the workplace for more tips on how to minimize the dangers of this common hazard.

Additionally, industrial and manufacturing companies need to take protective gear more seriously. With all of the technology available, both to make machines safer and to protect appendages from harm, there’s no excuse for lockout/tagout or machine-guarding injuries. To brush up on some of the most critical personal protective equipment, see our comprehensive PPE checklist.

As companies head into the new year, those in charge of safety programs should keep this list of hazards on hand. By keeping the most common dangers top-of-mind, they can adequately prepare their staff with the proper safety training and stock up on the necessary protective equipment. Together, let’s make 2017 a safer year in the workplace!

U.S. Standard Products is an industrial supplies distributor based in New Jersey, providing operational and safety necessities ranging from ice melt to work gloves, and so much more. To stay up-to-date on the latest workplace safety news and trends, follow U.S. Standard Products on social media:

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Ice Melt Guide for Business Owners

To the average business owner, ice melt is ice melt—you spread it on your sidewalks and parking lots, helping to ensure that the walkways surrounding your business are free of ice (and slip) hazards. What many don’t realize is that there is a wide variety of ice melt types, each with different properties. Some are safe for animals, others are not; some work in super cold temperatures, and others don’t. While there are a number of different ice melt products available, they all work in a similar way—by lowering the freezing point of water and turning snow and ice into saltwater slush.

Here at U.S. Standard Products, we’ve put together a quick ice melt guide to help you select the best ice melt formula for your business needs.

Exploring Ice Melt Materials

Type Temp. Pros Cons
Sodium Chloride (Rock Salt) 20-22o F

 

Most common

Inexpensive

Natural

Fast acting

Not effective in extreme cold

Corrosive—(damages metal, grass, sometimes concrete)

Deadly to animals when ingested

Leaves residue

 

Calcium Chloride -25o F

 

Most effective in extreme cold

Natural

Fast acting

A little goes a long way

Long lasting

More costly

Can damage vegetation

Possible health consequences

Potassium Chloride 12-25o F

 

Natural

Less corrosive

Better for environment

 

Not effective in extreme cold

Leaves residue

Harmful to vegetation at high concentration

More costly

Deadly to animals with kidney disease when ingested

Urea 15o F

 

Very little damage to concrete/asphalt

Better for environment

Safer for animals

Inexpensive

 

Harmful to vegetation at high concentration

Not as effective

Magnesium Chloride -13-5o F

 

Fast acting

Long lasting

Natural

Better for environment

More costly

Can damage vegetation

Deadly to animals with kidney disease when ingested

Moderate concrete damage

Don’t Forget!

As you’re considering ice melt options, don’t forget these important safety and usage tips.

  • Always use in moderation. Using more than the recommended amount does not increase effectiveness—in fact it could cause damage to your concrete/asphalt, as well as any nearby vegetation.
  • Wear gloves. First, it’s probably cold out—dress for the weather! Second, and probably more important, the chemicals contained in most ice melt products can irritate the skin. It’s not worth taking a chance.
  • Keep shoveling. As nice as it would be to put the snow plows, blowers, and shovels back in the garage, you still have to put in the work to remove whatever snow you can in order for the ice melt to be effective.
  • Seal it up. Ice melt absorbs moisture, so when it’s in storage, make sure it’s sealed up properly to maintain effectiveness.
  • Avoid fresh concrete. If you’ve had concrete poured on your property within the last year, keep the ice melt away! Freshly poured concrete needs time to cure, and application of ice melt can set it up for future damage.

U.S. Standard Products is an industrial supplies distributor based in New Jersey, providing operational and safety necessities ranging from ice melt to work gloves, and so much more. To learn more about our product offering, follow U.S. Standard Products on social media:

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Spreading Kidney Disease Awareness One Grand Round at a Time

U.S. Standard Products is proud to support the National Kidney Foundation serving Greater New York. Through our support of the Grand Rounds program, the organization is able to improve awareness, prevention and treatment of kidney disease.

What are Grand Rounds?

All healthcare professionals are required to participate in a set amount of professional development in order to retain their licensure. Medical Grand Rounds are professional development events, hosted in hospitals, to help physicians and staff fulfill that requirement and stay informed of the most cutting-edge research, knowledge and industry advancements. The number of attendees ranges from 50-150 medical practitioners.

Bringing Kidney Disease into the Grand Round Conversation

The National Kidney Foundation leads 10-12 Grand Rounds per year across New York and New Jersey. The organization focuses on presenting Grand Rounds in underserved areas and hospitals that serve many patients with diabetes and hypertension, the two leading causes of kidney failure. At each event, the National Kidney Foundation brings in a well-respected thought leader to speak on a kidney health-related topic with an emphasis on nephrology and primary care. The speaker receives an honorarium, which is made possible by U.S. Standard Products’ support of the program.

What’s the Impact of Our Support?

Studies indicate that early intervention is critical in decreasing the complications associated with progressive kidney disease. Grand Rounds focuses on educating healthcare practitioners on the timely identification and treatment of chronic kidney disease (CKD) and on the link between cardiovascular disease (CVD), diabetes and CKD. Beyond that, the ultimate goal of the speaking event is to inspire a change in practice and transform the way that care is delivered.

About the National Kidney Foundation

The National Kidney Foundation (NKF) is the leading organization in the United States dedicated to the awareness, prevention and treatment of kidney disease for hundreds of thousands of healthcare professionals, millions of patients and their families, and tens of millions of Americans at risk.

About U.S. Standard Products

U.S. Standard Products, an industrial supplies distributor based in New Jersey, supports a number of charitable organizations that are working to make the world a better place. Learn more about our involvement on our blog, and follow U.S. Standard Products on social media for the latest updates:

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Avoiding Slips, Trips and Falls in the Workplace

Falls in the workplace are nothing to mess around with. In 2009, the Bureau of Labor estimated that 212,760 workers were seriously injured by a fall, and even worse, 605 workers were killed. And according to the National Safety Council, 25,000 slip, trip and fall accidents occur daily in the U.S. While workers across all trades face the risk of falling, the most dangerous trades of them all often involve working six or more feet from the ground, such as construction, roofing, tree trimming, utility repair, etc.

Here at U.S. Standard Products, we advocate strongly for fall prevention—both on the same level and to a lower level. We’ve compiled our top six tips for identifying fall risks and preventing fall-related injuries in the workplace.

  1. Be a pro; proactivity is the best protection – Implement regularly scheduled safety walkthroughs to ensure that all hazards are clearly marked, and your premises are kept in safe condition. Educate employees of the dangers and risks, and properly train them on how to properly use safety equipment. Not only will proactive risk mitigation activities help keep your employees safe, but they will also help you secure the best insurance at the best price.
  2. Don’t cry over spilled milk, just clean it up ASAP! – Spills, leaks, drips… they’re all dangerous the minute they hit the floor. Be sure that you have cleanup supplies readily available, including “wet floor” signs. Also consider applying a slip-resistant treatment to floors that are prone to getting wet.
  3. Say yes to yellow – Yellow is the color of choice for marking hazards that could result in accidents from slipping, falling or striking against something, according to OSHA Standards. Be sure all steps, corners, trip hazards are marked clearly in yellow to minimize risk. Learn more about color coding in the workplace.
  4. Light it up – Proper lighting is key for maximizing visibility and minimizing slips, trips and falls. All walkways, staircases, etc. should be well lit at all working hours. If working in a heavy industrial environment, consider investing in specialized rough service lighting fixtures to extend the longevity of the lamps.
  5. Ice, ice, maybe? – Snow and ice melt: your ultimate weapon against winter slipping. Stock up on more snow and ice melt than you think you’ll need before the first freeze so that you’re prepared when you need it.
  6. Boots and ladders – Workers who are exposed to vertical drops of six or more feet from the ground are at risk of injury or death in the event of a fall. It’s imperative, and required by OSHA, to provide these workers with proper fall protection equipment—whether that is the appropriate ladder or scaffold for the job, non-slip shoes, or personal fall arrest systems (PFAS).

U.S. Standard Products provides a wide range of safety products to help you and your team stay safe on the job. For more tips on safety in the workplace, follow U.S. Standard Products on social media:

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Stay Safe with this Checklist for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

To reduce workplace accidents and shield workers from potential hazards, it’s important to have a thorough plan for equipping workers with personal protective equipment (PPE).

Without protective equipment plan, employees are at risk of injury and employers could be subject to fines or penalties. OSHA stipulates that employers must pay for personal protective equipment for employees with the exception of prescription safety glasses, safety-toe protective footwear and other equipment or clothing that is personal or worn outside of the job.

To help determine which protective gear is necessary for the job, we’ve prepared a checklist of commonly required personal protective equipment below.

Eye Protection

When thinking about eye protection, it’s important to consider any occupational risk to the eyes or face. Common hazards include dust, liquid or chemical splashes, abrasive particles, sparks or molten metals, and it’s also important to consider comfort and the visibility requirements of the job.

In any situation that involves the hazards above, workers should, at a minimum, have a trustworthy pair of safety glasses, while some jobs may require full face shields or welding helmets. In many instances, certain types and colors of safety glasses can help improve visibility and job performance, so it’s important to consider that as well.

Head & Face Protection

In addition to the eyes, head and face protection is one of the most important areas to consider to prevent significant injuries at the workplace. Generally, a safety helmet is essential in environments where a worker could be struck on the head by a falling or fixed object, if a worker could potentially fall or if they could come into contact with an electrical hazard.

Hearing Protection

Each year, roughly 30 million workers in the U.S. are exposed to hazardous noise levels in the workplace. It’s estimated that about 125,000 workers suffer significant or permanent hearing loss each year while on the job. With these statistics in mind, employers are required to provide hearing protection to workers who are exposed to volume levels at or above 85 decibels for at least eight hours per day. However, even if workplace noises don’t reach 85 decibels, it’s still highly advise to provide hearing protection for workers.

Recommended hearing protection can vary by industry, though we previously outlined some of the best options for hearing protection in various work environments.

Hand Protection

In many professions, hand protection is absolutely essential when working with dangerous machinery or equipment or handling harmful substances or materials. However, there really is no one-size-fits-all glove for protecting the hands, so it’s important to identify the material and type of glove that works best for your industry.

Lucky for you, we’ve previously prepared guides on finding the right gloves for the job. You can find them listed below:

Foot Protection

Finding proper foot protection is essential, though between the protection offered, thickness of the material and the type of sole, it’s important to make the right choice based on your industry and work environment. All workers in laboratory, factory, workshop, construction or outdoor work environments should have enclosed footwear.

In workplaces with chemicals or harmful substances, all footwear should be resistant to hazardous substances. In workshops, construction sites or factory settings, boots with steel caps or increased protection are recommended. 

Skin Protection

Employers aren’t typically required to provide most methods of skin protection (long-sleeve shirts, pants, sunscreen, etc.), though it is still a very important area to consider. Especially in outdoor environments, workplaces with exposure to flames or electricity or environments with hazardous substances and chemicals, employees should have adequate skin protection to ensure they aren’t exposed to potential harm.

To protect your employees from common workplace injuries and accidents, consider all of the areas of protection above and verify that the equipment you are providing is adequate. If you’re in need of safety equipment to protect your team, check out the U.S. Standard Products catalog. We offer a wide range of cost-effective, protective safety gear to help minimize workplace accidents and injuries.

For the latest safety tips, stay tuned to the U.S. Standard Products blog, or follow us on social media:

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