Join our team !

We’re Hiring In 2020: Multiple Positions

United Alliance Services Corporation (UASC), OccuMed of New England’s sister company, is growing quickly and we’re looking to expand our team! UASC is a full-service provider of occupational health and safety consulting and training services. We understand the compliance issues that affect the business owner, manager, contractor, insurer, and broker. Our aim is to develop solutions to assist our client’s management team in reaching and exceeding their health and safety goals.

UASC has multiple locations, with our corporate office being located in Canton, MA. With our company growing exponentially over the past few years, we are looking for excited and hungry individuals to help grow it even more. If you are self-motivated and positive, apply today to one of the positions that’s right for you!

Current UASC Job Openings:

Construction Site Safety Manager – New England

Regional Safety Consultant – New England

OSHA Outreach Trainer – New England

Current OccuMed Job Openings:

Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT) – New England

Health and Wellness Consultant/Trainer – New England

 

How to Apply

To apply for any of the current job openings at United Alliance Services Corporation, please email your updated resume, cover letter, and list of 3 professional references to safetysolutions@uascor.com. For more information or assistance, please call 774-302-4305. To learn more about United Alliance Services, please visit our website by clicking here.

 

OccuMed of New England Careers

Interested in UASC’s health and wellness division, OccuMed of New England? Visit our sister website and view the current job openings by clicking here.

 

 

Technician or engineer with protective mask and helmet standing in industrial factory.

Unsafe Workplaces – 900 COVID-19 Noncompliance Complaints

As businesses try to navigate these uncertain times and provide a safe work environment, many states are still showing increases in COVID-19 cases. For states where cases are either declining or holding steady, workers are returning to work under stricter safety protocols.

Employers are also scrambling to keep up with customer demand and provide their workers with a safe workplace. All states have specific requirements employers need to follow and while most are adhering to these standards, many are not.

900 COVID-19 Complaints Filed Since May

A recent article on MassLive revealed there were as many as 900 formal complaints filed against Massachusetts businesses since May from workers about alleged failures to adequately protect them from COVID-19 risks.

Many of the complaints were due to failure to allow for enough social distancing and a lack of cleaning and disinfection. While other complaints were for employers allegedly requiring those with COVID-19 symptoms to come into work.

It was also reported that OSHA has closed more than 500 coronavirus-related complaints in Massachusetts this year.

While no fines have yet to be enforced upon these businesses, several have been ordered to shut down immediately for cleaning and sanitation, and dozens of cease-and-desist letters have been sent to companies allegedly in violation of COVID-19.

Filing a Complaint

Due to the number of complaints, Massachusetts has provided a complaint form on Mass.gov that can be completed anonymously.

The types of hazard people can file a complaint about include:

  • Cleaning/disinfection
  • Hygiene
  • Failure to display Compliance Attestation poster
  • Personal protective equipment (PPE)
  • Requiring symptomatic employees to work
  • Retaliation
  • Social distancing

What Employers Must Do to Keep Employees Safe at Work

Many states have established safety standards for businesses to follow while they continue to reopen and need to follow in order to remain open. They are designed to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission to employees and customers.

The MA Department of Public Health (DPH) and the COVID-19 Command Center, note the following required safety standards:

  1. Social Distancing

Whenever possible, all persons, including employees, customers, and vendors should remain at least six feet apart, both inside and outside workplaces. Protocols should be established to ensure that employees can practice adequate social distancing. Signage needs to be provided to show steps for safe social distancing. Face coverings or masks for all employees is required.

  1. Hygiene Protocols

Employers need to provide handwashing capabilities throughout the workplace with supplies and make sure employees are frequently washing their hands. Also, regular sanitization of high touch areas, such as workstations, equipment, screens, doorknobs, restrooms throughout work site, needs to be implemented.

  1. Staffing and Operations

Employers need to provide training for employees regarding social distancing and hygiene protocols. If an employee is displaying COVID19-like symptoms, the employer should allow that person to stay home. An established plan for employees getting ill from Covid-19 at work, and a return-to-work plan, needs to be in place for employees to review.

  1. Cleaning and Disinfecting

Employees must establish and maintain a cleaning protocol. When an active employee is diagnosed with COVID19, cleaning, and disinfecting must be performed. Disinfection of all common surfaces must take place at intervals appropriate to the workplace and work environment.

Avoid Employee Complaints

The safety standards have put another layer of pressure on business owners and workers. No business owner wants the added expense of a potential fine or a cease-and-desist letter.

However, having a complaint filed is avoidable. Following the required standards is necessary and for those who need additional help, we offer two Safety Service Options:

COVID-19 CONSULTING BUNDLE – Written directive/policy on requirements which can be either a corporate policy or a site-specific policy.

COVID-19 TRAINING (INFECTION CONTROL WEBINAR) – We offer Open Enrollment Classes and Private Company Sponsored Classes made available at your convenience.

If you have concerns about your workforce and coronavirus, please contact us today to learn about steps you can take to protect yourself, your family, and your employees.

COVID19 TESTING – We now offer COVID-19 Testing Services For Colleges, Universities, Private Companies, And Public Agencies

 

Safety Advisory Notice

To keep our clients informed and safe, we are providing information on a recent recall notice from 3M™. If you are using these products, please read this announcement and follow the steps provided.

3M™ recently issued a notice to immediately stop using TR-6510N and TR-6530N Cartridges. These cartridges are used with the 3M™ Versaflo™ TR-600 and TR-800 Powered Air Purifying Respirators (PAPRs).

The reason for the stop and return announcement was based on 3M™ internal testing which showed that they may not pass the NIOSH requirements for HEPA particulate filters of at least 99.97% filtration efficiency. The TR-6510N and TR-6530N cartridges of concern may have a filter penetration of up to approximately 2% (filter efficiency of approximately 98%), which is below the relevant NIOSH requirements. The gas and vapor portion of these cartridges continues to meet the NIOSH requirements.

3M™ asks that you please review your inventory immediately to determine if you have affected product. If you have any of the affected product in question, please visit: go.3m.com/TRcartridge for return and replacement.

Please note that this stop use and return notice applies only to the 3M™ TR-6510N and TR-6530N cartridges and does not affect any other 3M™ powered air-purifying respirator (PAPR) cartridges, filters, components, or assemblies/kits.

View Frequently Asked Questions here

If you have any concerns about the safety of your equipment, please contact us.

 

Factory workers with face mask protect from outbreak of Coronavirus Disease 2019 or COVID-19. Concept of protective action and quarantine to stop spreading of Coronavirus Disease 2019 or COVID-19.

Employees Sue Employers Over COVID-19 Safety

As states continue with reopening plans, Coronavirus has not subsided. In fact, in many states, the rate of infection is increasing at an alarming rate. While the CDC provides recommendations on ways to protect yourself and others, not everyone is adhering to the guidance.

In one hard-hit region, Las Vegas, casino workers sued several casinos after reports that many workers fell ill to COVID-19. The lawsuit complains that the casinos did not require workers to wear face masks.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Las Vegas, is against the owners of Harrah’s, MGM Grand and Bellagio casinos. It claims the companies continued operations of their food-and-beverage outlets and other areas after learning of positive cases and that it did not inform employees when co-workers tested positive and did not provide adequate contact-trace before allowing colleagues of infected employees to return to the job.

6 Ways to Protect the Health of Your Employees

1. Encourage sick employees to stay home.
Coronavirus spreads from person-to-person very easily. If an employee becomes sick, whether from COVID-19 or not, it is best to have the employee stay home. The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person while close contact with one another (within about 6 feet) and through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks. To avoid the risk of spreading the disease to other employees and to customers, it is best practice to have a sick employee stay home and self-quarantine.

2. Develop flexible work schedules and continue work from home, if possible.
Since the virus spreads easily person-to-person and most people who test positive may be asymptomatic (showing no signs of or very mild signs of illness), allowing for flexible work schedules and work from home policies may lessen the physical contact between employees and customers. This act may help slow the spread and keep employees safe while working.

3. Promote proper hygiene and etiquette.
It is suggested that this virus can spread through respiratory droplets from coughing, sneezing, and talking. Proper hygiene is key to possibly reducing the spread. All employees should wash their hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after they have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. Promote proper hygiene by having soap and water available for all employees, as well as hand sanitizers and face masks.

4. Perform routine environmental cleaning.
As employees and customers begin to physically interact, proving a safe and clean work environment will be critical to stopping the virus spread. Be sure to routinely clean and disinfect all frequently touched surfaces, such as workstations, countertops, handrails, and doorknobs. Also, discourage employees from sharing of tools and equipment, if feasible.

5. Utilize Onsite Medical Services.
To help prevent on-the-job injuries, reduce workers’ compensation costs, and ensure occupational health compliance, and avoid OSHA fines, utilizing on-site health and safety services can help to treat injuries quickly can help avoid unnecessary and excessive off-site referrals, treatments, and prescriptions. Minor injuries can be resolved on-site, as well, allowing workers to return to productive work quicker. More serious cases are recognized sooner so they can receive appropriate diagnoses and treatment.

6. Provide access to training and educational material.
Keeping employees informed on the latest safety protocols is good practice. The more your employees know, the better informed they are about the risk of spread and how best to handle the work environment to help keep everyone safe. Have posters and fact sheets available for employees to easily access. Also, encourage employees to take additional training courses. There are numerous online courses available to educate employees on how to protect themselves from the virus.

There is still much we do not know about this virus; these simple steps can help. Implementing them now can help to provide a safer work environment and possibly help to reduce your risk of a business lawsuit or an insurance claim.
In these challenging times, the risk of exposure is more prevalent than ever. We offer two Safety Service Options:

COVID-19 CONSULTING BUNDLE – Written directive/policy on requirements which can be either a corporate policy or a site-specific policy.

COVID-19 TRAINING (INFECTION CONTROL WEBINAR) – We offer Open Enrollment Classes and Private Company Sponsored Classes made available at your convenience.

If you have concerns about your workforce and coronavirus, please contact us today to learn about steps you can take to protect yourself, your family, and your employees.

Hand holding lit sparkler in front of the American Flag for 4th of July celebration

July 4th Safety Tips

July 4th is a time to celebrate our nation’s birthday. It’s also a time to be with family and friends to enjoy a cookout and watch the fireworks. However, this year is different. Even as states are relaxing their shutdown plans and reopening, the Coronavirus is still spreading in most states across the country.

Though it’s tempting to go outside and enjoy restaurants and shopping, it is still imperative to adhere to local safety requirements.

The CDC has provided guidance on how to stay safe while communities and businesses are opening. While it is tempting to resume some daily activities, it is also imperative that you implement safety precautions to help reduce to risk of infection and spread. While there is no way to remove the risk of infection, there are potential risk factors and prevention measures you can take to protect yourself and to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.

As a reminder, if you have COVID-19, have symptoms consistent with COVID-19, or have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19, it is important to stay home and away from other people. In all circumstances, be sure to follow CDC’s recommendations.

Coronavirus – Tips to Help Protect Yourself, Your Family and Your Workers

What to consider before you go

How many people will you interact with? Interacting with more people raises your risk. Being in a group with people who are not social distancing or wearing cloth face coverings increases your risk. Engaging with new people also raises your risk. Some people have the virus and do not have any symptoms, and it is not yet known how often people without symptoms can transmit the virus to others.

Can you keep 6 feet of space between you and others? Will you be outdoors or indoors? The closer you are to other people who may be infected, the greater your risk of getting sick. Keeping distance from other people is especially important for people who are at higher risk for severe illness, such as older adults and those with underlying medical conditions. Indoor spaces are riskier than outdoor spaces.

What is the length of time that you will be interacting with people? Spending more time with people who may be infected increases your risk of becoming infected. Spending more time with people increases their risk of becoming infected if there is any chance that you may already be infected.

Determining Your Level of Risk

Asking these questions can help determine your level of risk:

  1. Is COVID-19 spreading in my community?
  2. What are the local orders in my community?
  3. Will my activity put me in close contact with others?
  4. Am I at risk for severe illness?
  5. Do I live with someone who is at risk for severe illness?
  6. Do I practice everyday preventive actions?
  7. Will I have to share any items, equipment, or tools with other people?
  8. Will I need to take public transportation to get to the activity?
  9. Does my activity require travel to another community?
  10. If I get sick with COVID-19, will I have to miss work or school?
  11. Do I know what to do if I get sick?

Safety Service Options to Protect You

As MA enters Phase 2 of the reopening plan, and with COVID-19 still a concern for many people, safety measures and CDC guidelines need to be followed in order to reduce the risk of infection and spread.

COVID-19 CONSULTING BUNDLE – Written directive/policy on requirements which can be either a corporate policy or a site-specific policy.

COVID-19 TRAINING (INFECTION CONTROL WEBINAR) – We offer Open Enrollment Classes and Private Company Sponsored Classes made available at your convenience.

If you have concerns about your workforce and coronavirus, please contact us today to learn about steps you can take to protect yourself, your family, and your employees.

We hosted a webinar: What Employers Need To Know About Covid-19 Testing & Accelerating The Return To Work. Which provided tips on keeping the workplace safe for employees and customers. Watch it free here.

 

Safety Protective Work Equipment. Yellow Helmet, Glasses, Gloves and Mask. Protection Gear Closeup.

June is National Safety Month

As businesses begin to reopen and employees start returning to work, now, more than ever, safety is crucial both inside and outside the workplace. In concert with the National Safety Council, we’re recognizing June as National Safety Month®. National Safety Month focuses on saving lives and preventing injuries, from the workplace to anyplace.

Share the Safety Message in June

To help spread the word about National Safety Month, we’re sharing recent information on relevant safety topics. Here are articles and a recent webinar related to safety:

Simple Guidelines for All Workers and Employers to Stay Safe from COVID-19

Why You Should Consider a Safety Professional

Prevent Construction Struck-By Fatalities by Implementing Proper Safety Techniques

The importance of Ariel Lift Safety Training

On June 11th, we hosted a webinar: What Employers Need To Know About Covid-19 Testing & Acclerating The Return To Work. Which provided tips on keeping the workplace safe for employees and customers Topics included:

  • How do employers verify employees’ health status?
  • What type of documentation is required?
  • Are thermometers and other testing protocols even available?
  • What other protocols are required, like wearing masks and conducting health screening, temperature screening and latest anti-body testing options?
  • What if employees refuse to come back claiming the workplace is unsafe?

Watch it free here

Safety Training Courses

Safety training courses can help you obtain necessary OSAH certifications, expand your skillset and knowledge, and stay current with industry safety trends and requirements. We offer online, onsite, and public classes safety training programs.

Choose the right safety course and training that fits your schedule. Enroll in our online courses during your downtime and save 20% by using code: STAYSAFE

Safety Consulting Services

We offer two Safety Service Options:

COVID-19 CONSULTING BUNDLE – Written directive/policy on requirements which can be either a corporate policy or a site-specific policy.

COVID-19 TRAINING (INFECTION CONTROL WEBINAR) – We offer Open Enrollment Classes and Private Company Sponsored Classes made available at your convenience.

If you have concerns about the safety of your workplace, please contact us today to learn about steps you can take to protect your employees and keep your business open.

 

Nurse wearing respirator mask holding a positive blood test result for the new rapidly spreading Coronavirus, originating in Wuhan, China

OSHA Issues New COVID-19 Guidance on Recording Cases

With construction sites and many businesses reopening in all states, OSHA has issued new guidance for employers for recording COVID-19 cases.

Recording Cases of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

Under OSHA’s recordkeeping requirements, COVID-19 is a recordable illness. Employers are responsible for recording cases of COVID-19:
• If the case is a confirmed case of COVID-19, as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC),
• The case is work-related, and
• If it involves one or more of the general recording criteria – death, days away from work, restricted work or transfer to another job, medical treatment beyond first aid, or loss of consciousness.

According to OSHA, when determining whether an employer has complied with this obligation and made a reasonable determination of work-relatedness, CSHOs should apply the following considerations:

1. The reasonableness of the employer’s investigation into work-relatedness.
Since most employers lack the resources to initiate extensive medical inquiries, and the concern for privacy issues, OSHA states it is sufficient in most circumstances for the employer, when it learns of an employee’s COVID-19 illness, (1) to ask the employee how he believes he contracted the COVID-19 illness; (2) while respecting employee privacy, discuss with the employee his work and out-of-work activities that may have led to the COVID-19 illness; and (3) review the employee’s work environment for potential SARS-CoV-2 exposure. The review in (3) should be informed by any other instances of workers in that environment contracting COVID-19 illness.

2. The evidence available to the employer.
Trying to determine if a COVID-19 illness was work-related is no easy task. To ease some concern, OSHA suggests employers rely on the information reasonably available at the time it made its work-relatedness determination. Any additional information learned later, then that information should be considered as well

3. The evidence that a COVID-19 illness was contracted at work.
All reasonably available evidence should be reviewed to determine whether an employer has complied with its recording obligation. Certain types of evidence may weigh in favor of or against work-relatedness.

To help determine this, there are a number of factors to consider, such as the number of cases among workers, the length and close exposure to someone with a confirmed case of COVID-19, the job duties that may have frequent, close exposure to the general public in a location with known cases, the work done in an area with confirmed community spread, and if there is close proximity and frequency with family members who has COVID-19, are all factors to when trying to determine if COVID-19 was work-related or not.

If the employer cannot determine whether it is more likely than not that exposure in the workplace played a causal role with respect to a case of COVID-19, the employer does not need to record that COVID-19 illness.

Stay on the Safe Side
The recording requirements can be a bit murky. Failure to comply can lead to penalties and fines. We offer two Safety Service Options to help you manage the potential exposure:
COVID-19 CONSULTING BUNDLE – Written directive/policy on requirements which can be either a corporate policy or a site-specific policy.

COVID-19 TRAINING (INFECTION CONTROL WEBINAR) – We offer Open Enrollment Classes and Private Company Sponsored Classes made available at your convenience.
If you have concerns about your workforce and coronavirus, please contact us today to learn about steps you can take to protect yourself, your family, and your employees.

worker with mask and hardhat-min

6 Ways Construction Sites Will Change Due to COVID-19

As America starts to reopen and people begin to return to work, business owners and workers will return to a different environment. Though it appears that the number of COVID-19 related illness and deaths are flattening, now is not the time to stop being vigilant.

In fact, businesses across the country will now need to adhere to an increased level of safety measures, social distancing, and personal hygiene protocols. Many states and counties have outlined an overwhelming list of items that need to be met to help minimize the risk and keep the level of infections down. 

Construction sites are no different.

United Alliance is committed to protecting the health and safety of America’s workers and workplaces during these unprecedented times. To that end, we are providing up to date information from multiple sources to give you the information you need to ensure a safer workplace.

Here are six ways that COVID-19 has altered the construction job sites:

  1. Jobsites will be cleaner and safer

As jobsites begin to reopen, workers will be subject to temperature checks when entering the jobsite. Social distancing will need to be adhered to and large group gatherings will need to be minimized.

Steps will be taken to sanitize common areas and direct work places. This includes all on-site bathrooms facilities, any break facilities, and any other common areas on the job site that may have been in close contact with the infected worker. Handwashing stations will be added so workers can adhere to the worksite guideline.

2. Heightened enforcement and oversight of safety

A site-specific COVID-19 Officer will need to be designated for every site. Large projects will need to develop and submit to city or town officials, a site-specific risk analysis and enhanced COVID-19 safety plan.

In some states, cities and towns will be able to enforce safety and distance protocols. Failure to comply may result in a pause of construction activities until a corrective action plan is prepared, submitted and approved by the city or town.

3. Worker health will be monitored

Along with temperature checks, workers may need to self-certify to their supervisor that they have no signs of a fever, a cough or trouble breathing within the past 24 hours and have not had “close contact” with an individual diagnosed with COVID-19.

4. Infection protocols will be enforced

Many states have guidelines and protocols Any worker showing even mild symptoms of respiratory infection (cough, shortness of breath, sore throat) or fever should stay off the jobsite. Construction owners should enforce this rule. Employees exhibiting symptoms or unable to self-certify should be directed to leave the work site and seek medical attention

and applicable testing by their health care provider. They are not to return to the worksite until cleared by a medical professional

5. Projects will take longer

As noted in a recent article from Construction Drive, many of the major safety changes on construction sites will add to the time it takes to complete projects. While crucial to keeping workers healthy, techniques such suiting up with PPE, only allowing one trade on a site at a time and staggering work shifts will slow down progress.

6. Some workers may continue teleworking

While skilled construction workers were limited by the impact of COVID-19, back-office management was able to utilize technology tools such as web conferencing for meetings, emails and text messages, to keep many projects afloat.

In these challenging times, the risk of exposure on your job site is more prevalent than ever.

We offer two Safety Service Options:

COVID-19 CONSULTING BUNDLE – Written directive/policy on requirements which can be either a corporate policy or a site-specific policy.

COVID-19 TRAINING (INFECTION CONTROL WEBINAR) – We offer Open Enrollment Classes and Private Company Sponsored Classes made available at your convenience.

If you have concerns about your workforce and coronavirus, please contact us today to learn about steps you can take to protect yourself, your family, and your employees.

covid onsite testing v2-min

MA Construction Reopening Plan – Why You Should Consider a Safety Professional

COVID-19 is having a major impact of the economy. Unemployment rates are at an all-time high. With the rate of infections seeming to be flattening across the country, states are beginning implement their reopening plans. While there is no question the economy needs to be restarted to help families and businesses improve their financial situation, the balancing act will be in keeping people safe while businesses begin to reopen.

The long-awaited plan developed by Gov. Charlie Baker provides a measured, four-phase approach that is intended to do just that.

MA Four Phase Plan Overview

  1. Phase One – Start
  2. Phase Two – Cautious
  3. Phase 3 – Vigilant
  4. Phase 4 – New Normal

Each phase will last a minimum of three weeks and could last longer before moving to the next phase. It is noted that work from home when available is still in place, along with masks, proper hygiene, and social distancing. The Governor’s Office has provided a detailed overview of the Four Phase Plan here.

Here is a summary of what will begin to open during Phase One:

May 18th:

  • Places of worship with guidelines and outdoor services are encouraged
  • Essential businesses, manufacturing, and construction
  • Hospitals and community health centers can start with high priority preventative care and treatment for high-risk patients
  • Public transit riders on the MBTA will be required to wear masks

On May 25, other business will begin to open with restrictions

  • Personal services – hair salons, barbershops, pet grooming (curbside drop off/pick up) – all by appointment only
  • Car washes – exterior washing only
  • Laboratories and life sciences facilities
  • Offices (not in Boston) but must be less than 25% maximum occupancy; work from home strongly encouraged
  • Retail for remote services and curbside pick up
  • Beaches, parks, drive-in theaters, athletic fields and courts, outdoor adventure activities, most fishing, hunting, and boating, along with outdoor gardens, zoos, reserves and public installations – all with guidelines
  • Day Care: Childcare operating at reduced capacity and on an emergency basis for children of workers with no safe alternative to group care

June 1 will include:

  • Offices in Boston

MA Construction Industry Reopening Plan and Guidelines

Construction sites in MA were permitted to reopen on May 18 with strict guidelines to follow. Broken into four sections, below are mandatory safety standards, recommended best practices and a link to a checklist for the construction sector.

Below are some pertinent highlights of the main areas of focus:

Enforcement and Oversight

  1. A site-specific COVID-19 Officer (who may also be the Health and Safety Officer) shall be designated for every site
  2. Develop and submit a site-specific risk analysis and enhanced COVID-19 safety plan for large, complicated construction projects a city or town
  3. For all projects undertaken, managed or funded by a state agency or authority there shall be joint enforcement responsibility between the project’s public Owner and the city or town where the project is located
  4. Cities and towns are authorized to enforce the COVID-19 Construction Safety Guidance
  5. Cities and towns may enforce the safety and distance protocols. Failure to comply may result in a pause of construction activities until a corrective action plan is prepared, submitted and approved by the city or town
  6. The city or town may require the Owner of a large, complicated private project to pay for an independent, third party inspector or inspection firm

Download the Safety Standards for Construction Checklist

Employee Health Protection – ZERO Tolerance

  1. Zero tolerance for sick workers reporting to work. If you are sick, stay home! If you feel sick, go

Home! If you see someone sick, send them home!

  • Self-certify prior to shift
    Prior to starting a shift, each employee will self-certify to their supervisor that they:
    • Have no signs of a fever or a measured temperature above 100.3 degrees or greater, a cough or trouble breathing within the past 24 hours
    • Have not had “close contact” with an individual diagnosed with COVID-19. “Close contact” means living in the same household as a person who has tested positive for COVID-19, caring for a person who has tested positive for COVID-19, being within 6 feet of a person who has tested positive for COVID-19 for about 15 minutes, or coming in direct contact with secretions (e.g., sharing utensils, being coughed on) from a person who has tested positive for COVID-19, while that person was symptomatic
    • Have not been asked to self-isolate or quarantine by their doctor or a local public health official

The Mandatory Safety Standards is a comprehensive checklist of numerous safety protocols that need to be enforced. Below is a sample of the protocols and include:

  • No handshaking
  • Wash hands often – wash stations are required
  • Lock down officed to all but authorized personnel
  • Each jobsite should develop cleaning and decontamination procedures that are posted and shared. These Procedures must cover all areas including trailers, gates, equipment, vehicles, etc. and shall be posted at all entry points to the sites, and throughout the project site
  • A “No Congregation” policy is in effect, individuals must implement social distancing by maintaining a minimum distance of 6-feet from other individuals
  • Avoid face to face meetings
  • Conduct all meetings via conference calls, if possible. Do not convene meetings of more than 10 people.
  • All individual work crew meetings / tailgate talks should be held outside and follow social distancing
  • Please keep all crews at a minimum of 6 feet apart
  • At each job briefing ask all employees if they are experiencing any symptoms, if so, send them home
  • Each jobsite should have laminated COVID-19 safety guidelines and handwashing instructions
  • All restroom facilities / porta-potties should be cleaned and handwashing stations must be provided with soap, hand sanitizer and paper towels
  • All surfaces should be regularly cleaned, including surfaces, door handles, laptops, etc.
  • All common areas and meeting areas are to be regularly cleaned and disinfected at least once a day but preferably twice a day
  • Be sure to use your own water bottle, and do not share

Download the Safety Standards for Construction Checklist

Worker Infection Protocol

There is a zero tolerance for sick workers reporting to work. Employees should be instructed that even those with mild symptoms of respiratory infection (cough, shortness of breath, sore throat) or fever should stay off work.

The Contractor shall work with the local board of health to identify any potential job site exposures. Upon learning of an infection, the contractor must immediately notify the designated COVID-19 safety officer, the site safety officer, and the owner. After a worker with COVID-19 related symptoms has been asked to leave the job site, the contractor shall take immediate steps to sanitize common areas and direct work places

View the entire, lengthy list of protocols here: MA Construction Mandatory Safety Standards

We Can Help You Reopen Safely

Our bundled COVID 19 /Coronavirus services system allows for quickly screening and detecting individuals with an elevated temperature. Utilizing a thermal thermometer in conjunction with our mobile app, we provide a solution that will alert employers and the workforce when a scanned person’s temperature exceeds a predetermined threshold, allowing for immediate intervention and protective measures.

We have furthered our efforts by creating a COVID 19 Training Webinars. We offer Open Enrollment Classes and Private Company Sponsored Classes made available at your convenience.

If you need assistance in your plan to reopen your business, please contact us today to learn more.

memorial-day-blog-2

Keeping Employees Safe for Memorial Day Weekend

Memorial Day is a time to honor the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. military. Many people visit cemeteries and memorials to honor our brave fallen heroes. 

As a thank you to our veterans and to encourage employers to keep their employees safe over the holiday, we’re offering  20% discount on our online training courses.

It is also considered the unofficial start to the summer and has become a long weekend increasingly devoted to shopping, family gatherings, fireworks and national media events.

However, this year may be a little different. With COVID-19 gripping the nation with fear and anxiety, many traditional summer events have either been cancelled or will reopen to new state mandated reopening guidelines.

More people may be staying closer to home, but fun can still be had. As we head into the Memorial Day weekend, the American Safety Counsel provides some helpful tips to stay safe:

Grilling & Fire Safety

Grills and smokers, while creating delicious cookout fare, have a great potential for danger.

  1. Never leave a grill unattended
  2. Keep children and animals away from hot surfaces
  3. Make sure your grill ready for the job. Keep it clean of grease, inspect propane fuel lines
  4. Keep an extinguisher nearby in case of flair-ups and make sure to know how to cut off fuel lines if you are using propane

Picnic Food Safety

Picnics in the backyard or nearby park can be a fun activity for the family. Be sure to avoid any unnecessary digestion issues while preparing food by following these steps.

  1. Take all safe food preparation precautions and avoid cross-contamination
  2. Be sure to wash your hands often
  3. Keep foods at safe temperatures
  4. Keep all outdoor buffet dishes covered

Summer Sun Safety

Use sunscreen of an appropriate SPF and reapply often, especially if you are swimming or sweating. Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated. Wear a hat and sunglasses.

Memorial Day Travel Safety

As many states begin to reopen, parks and beaches may be available in your area. Keep in mind, Memorial Day is a major travel day, so it is especially important to include driving safety into your weekend travel plans.

  1. Make sure your car is in top working condition; check your tire pressure and fill your tank before heading out on your trip, and make sure you are equipped with emergency essentials.
  2. Plan your drive ahead of time 
  3. Keep an eye on weather forecasts
  4. Never drive after drinking, travel with anyone who has been drinking, or allow anyone who has been drinking to drive.
  5. Always wear your safety belt!
covid-webinar-2a

COVID-19 Safety & Health Best Practices. What You Need to Know!

WEBINAR SERIES: Safety & Health Best Practices. What You Need to Know!

Presented by:

Date: May 27
Time: 1:00 PM EST

Richard W.Sarnie, CSP, P.E., ARM-E, CCPSC, CRIS, MLIS Chief Operating Officer | Authorized OSHA Outreach Trainer for Construction Senior Safety & Health Consultant & Instructor | United Alliance Services Corp, OccuMedof NE

Presenting what employers can implement for employees, customers, and the general public to reduce the risk of COVID 19 and other pathogens.

  1. Best practices to manage COVID 19 Risks
  2. Improving safety management processes
  3. Managing risks which includes what CDC, OSHA, State and Municipalities are recommending or mandating
  4. Safety management system deficiencies that may expose risk

ABOUT THE SPEAKER

Rich has over 30 years of risk management & safety experience in the manufacturing, construction, transportation, mining and retail service industries. Rich has been a presenter and keynote speaker on numerous occasions at local and national risk management & safety conferences and seminars. Rich also is a guest lecturer on Safety and Risk to engineering undergraduates at universities. Rich has a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Lowell (MA) and an MBA from Western New England College as well as a long list of other prominent credentials & licenses. Rich is a professional member of the American Society of Safety Professionals (ASSP) and was elected a Fellow with the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE).

Passengers and commuter train

Construction Safety Services For 2020 Expansion Of The MA South Coast Railroad

The MBTA Fiscal and Management Control Board recently announced a nearly $159 million contract with Skanska DW White JV to build the Fall River Secondary was recently approved as the first major construction package of South Coast Rail.

According to the MBTA South Coast Rail project website, Taunton, New Bedford, and Fall River are the only major cities within 50 miles of Boston that do not currently have Commuter Rail access to Boston. Phase 1 will bring service to these communities by late 2023.

The project will be rolled out in phases:

Phase 1: Extend a secondary line west from the existing Middleborough/Lakeville Line, and create the New Bedford and Fall River lines

Full Build: Extend the Stoughton Line south to connect more communities to the New Bedford and Fall River lines

It was also noted since the groundbreaking in July 2019, South Coast Rail has spent close to $100 million on construction work, real estate acquisitions, vehicle procurement, and related design and contract management/administration.

Funding for the project will reach $8 billion and last 5 years, ending in 2023.

The project includes building two new commuter rail stations, parking lots, a bus drop off, a layover facility for train storage, 12 miles of track and multiple bridges.

Construction Safety Manager Job Skills Required

As with any industry, railroad workers have certain specific safety requirements that help eliminate hazards that can arise. Workers need to be specially trained to be aware of these hazards and know what the appropriate safety tools and protocols are to keep themselves and those around them safe.

Some of the safety requirements workers, supervisors, and safety managers need to know include:

  • – Understanding railroad signs, flags, and tags
  • – Special high-visibility vests and jackets
  • – Working Limits
  • – Track Speeds
  • – Direction of Train Traffic
  • – Where to Clear
  • – How to cross the tracks
  • – Hot Spot Areas
  • – Placement of Watchmen
  • – Rotation & Relief Policy
  • – Weather Conditions/Visibility
  • – Inspect Watchmen’s Equipment

Track Safety Training

As with any industry, railroad workers have certain specific safety training requirements that help eliminate hazards that can arise. Hazards that are common to railroads include poor visibility and weather conditions, struck-by hazards, caught-in-between, and hot spot areas.

Safety managers can keep workers informed on what the safety plan is, any changes to the safety plan; and key information such as where to clear, train schedules, work schedules, and visibility and weather reports.

Construction Safety Managers

Safety managers for this type of work must be familiar with the relevant track safety program as well as have extensive experience with construction safety.

While working on railway tracks, a specially trained safety managers on a railroad construction can help conduct safety briefings and safety audits and make recommendations for correction. Their knowledge of the specific hazards inherent to railways can assist in the reduction of injuries and deaths.

Construction Safety Services

United Alliance’s Construction Safety Services Division provides high quality, professional and cost-effective health and safety services to construction clients, adding value to our client’s organization and protecting their greatest assets – their employees.

We provide OSHA and workplace environmental health and safety consulting and training for the construction industry. Our safety consulting services free clients from the challenge of finding and hiring safety consultants for special projects. United Alliance Services provides the site safety representative and administers all compensation, benefits and taxes, without the client having the additional overhead.

We offer the following services:

  1. Safety Programs and Site-Specific Plans
  2. OSHA Inspection and Citation Assistance
  3. OSHA Recordkeeping and Documentation
  4. Construction Safety Inspections

We also provide a robust Online Training Program that can be tailored to any construction safety training need.

Need help with your Construction Site Safety Plan? Contact us today for a free evaluation and risk assessment.