active shooter

How to Prepare for an Active Shooter Incident

The FBI website states there have been 250 active shooter incidents in the United States from 2000 to 2017 with 2,217 casualties.

While you may feel this couldn’t happen at your workplace, you may be wrong. The data also shows that 42 percent of these incidents took place in a business setting.

In our recent blog post Complete Your Safety Manual by Including an Active Shooter Program, we discussed how active shooters are difficult to profile because it’s usually an irrational, random target. Profilers share that active shooters tend to focus on “soft targets”, which includes crowded open spaces and a lack of security. This makes construction sites, lumber yards, and the likes a bit more of a potential target. We also stressed the importance of putting employee assistance programs in place in the event of an active shooter event.

Though there are steps to include to help alleviate the physical and mental pain if this type of event ever occurs, the real question is what your business can do to prepare for an active shooter event.

According to the American Society of Safety Professionals, there are five key areas you can focus on to better protect your work site and employees from workplace violence.

1. Assess Your Risks

The first step to protecting your site and employees is understanding your vulnerabilities. Much like a regular workplace risk assessment, an active shooter/armed assailant risk analysis is an invaluable tool in determining what gaps currently exist and how those can be mitigated moving forward.

2. Safeguard Your Facility

Assessing your risks and vulnerabilities provides a better understanding of what it will take to make your facility more secure.

3. Train Your Staff

To ensure that a plan is deployed effectively, everyone needs to understand their roles and responsibilities. Conducting training exercises helps employees think about what they would need to do in an active shooter/armed assailant situation and familiarizes them with the procedures in place to help protect their safety. 

4. Coordinate With Responding Agencies

Invite local police, fire departments and first responders to your site can help you build relationships with those agencies and help them become familiar with your facility.

5. Handle Post-Incident Issues

Ensure your employees get the attention they need, including any counseling to help them cope with what they’ve experienced.

Need to train your staff? Check out our upcoming Events

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Developing an Effective Health and Safety Program Step 5: Immediate Corrective Action

When it comes to health and safety in the workplace, it’s essential to deal with hazards as quickly as possible. When an incident or near miss occurs, or when a hazard is identified by a worker, it is the responsibility of both management and your safety program’s leaders to take immediate action. Immediate corrective action not only prevent further injury or illness from occurring, it also shows your workers that your organization takes safety seriously.

These are three steps that can help you to take the most effective action when an incident occurs at your worksite.  

  1. React: If a worker is injured, the first step is to ensure that they receive proper medical attention as soon as possible.
  2. Investigate: Investigation isn’t about placing blame; it’s about identifying the root causes of the injury and making sure that workers understand why the incident occurred. Investigations should be conducted by supervisors and employees working together.
  3. Reflect: Create a detailed report of the incident for your records. Then, ask these three questions in your post-incident reflection. If a rule or procedure was not followed, why was it not followed? Did pressures for productivity play a role, and if so, why were they allowed to jeopardize safety? Was the procedure or safety training related to the procedure out-of-date or inadequate?

While immediate corrective action is crucial, it’s also important to let these situations guide long-term corrective action. A quick-fix for a safety hazard is never acceptable. Once immediate action has been taken and the hazard has been eliminated, it’s necessary to consider how the occurrence should impact your overall program in the long-term.

United Alliance Services provides a variety of workplace health and safety training services to companies in the New England area. Contact us today to learn more about how our services can help make your workplace safer.

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Assisting Mass Municipal Agencies in Preparing for the 2019 OSHA Requirements

Updated OSHA Compliance with MGL has begun!

Here is a simple one-pager on how United Alliance Services can help get you into compliance!

OSHA Safety Training for Municipalities & Schools

Beginning February 2019, public employees are required to provide OSHA safety training and maintain OSHA compliance with job sites and safety training.

OSHA – UASC Training for MUNICIPALITIES:

  • Address the OSHA training requirements specific to each department
  • Training standards help municipalities perform jobs safely reducing worker comp, medical leave times, and injuries on the job.
  • Choose up to six electives that best suits your team members.
  • We maintain copies of all training’s, so if your system is compromised, we have a backup.
  • We’ll notify you when refreshers need to be renewed, so it’s one less thing to fall through the cracks.
  • We have developed the training programs allowing you to focus on your area of expertise

Click here for OSHA Safety Training for Municipalities!

OSHA – UASC Training for SCHOOLS:

  • Experienced OSHA safety regulations instructors
  • Help school employees perform their jobs safely by outlining first-hand, real-life scenarios
  • You choose the sessions that best suit your team members as you know them best
  • We maintain backup copies of all training documentation
  • Notifications when refreshers need to be renewed
  • We have developed the training programs, which is our area of expertise, to allow you to focus on your area of expertise – running an efficient school system.

Click here for OSHA Safety Training for MA Schools!

Record Keeping

Prior to the new law, the public sector was exempt from maintaining an OSHA 300 log. The MA Department of Labor Standards (DLS) now states that you only need to provide your OSHA 300 log when an inspector or the Bureau of Labor Statistics requests to see it.

The best practice is to maintain an OSHA 300 log.

OSHA 300 Log for MA Public Sector

An OSHA 300 log is used by private sector employers with more than 10 employees to maintain a record of injuries and illnesses that took place and are referred to as a “recordable”.

All of the recordables are documented, but each record also needs a form 301 completed, which details the injury/illness.

A recordable includes any work-related illness and/or injury that results in:

• Fatality
• loss of consciousness, missed work, restricted work, transfer to a lower-risk job
• medical treatment beyond first aid
• diagnosis of a work-related cancer, chronic irreversible disease, fractured or cracked bones/teeth, and punctured eardrums
• any drugs being prescribed or taken at prescription strength

Needle-sticks and sharps injuries, medical removal, hearing loss, and tuberculosis have special recording criteria.

24 Hour Fall Protection – EM 385 (3 Days)

This in-depth Fall Protection – 24 Hour EM 385 training course is designed for those in a leadership position who must also serve as the competent person and supervise other contractors and employees working at an elevated level.

This course includes in-class lectures including PowerPoint and video and hands-on scenarios applying theory discussed to practical workplace situations.

This Competent Person training is a pass/fail program incorporating both written and practical examinations and is based on the requirements of the federal regulations and local legislation that will be discussed and reinforced.

Attendees will learn practical solutions to difficult fall protection problems using appropriate tools and equipment.​

Any fall protection equipment that is required will be demonstrated during class; however, students can bring their own personal fall equipment to class for both demonstration and use. Participants will be required participate in Personal Fall Arrest Systems training (hands-on exercises), which may include: inspection procedures, donning procedures, fit test, selection, application and care of equipment.

A certificate of completion will be issued at the end of the 3-day training.

Daily:  8:00 am – 4:30 pm

Lab Safety

This session is designed for lab workers in general industry. Laboratory work requires knowledge, skill, and attention to detail. Laboratories have a variety of safety and health hazards. Employees need to understand each hazard and take proper precautions to protect themselves and coworkers at all times. The purpose of this laboratory safety training course is to teach employees lab safety requirements to ensure that they know how to prevent accidents, injuries, and illnesses on the job. The main objective of this session is to make sure that employees know what they need to do to protect themselves and others on the job. By the time this course is over, you should be able to understand the Chemical Hygiene Plan (CHP), identify laboratory hazards, take proper precautions to protect yourself, and act effectively in an emergency.

Walking Working Surfaces Awareness Course

This course covers the OSHA Walking-Working Surfaces standards for General Industry. This includes information on general safety requirements, protection from holes in the floor and walls, ladder safety, and scaffold safety. Participants learn how to apply the OSHA regulations for walking and working surfaces to avoid slips, trips, and falls in the workplace and how to recognize safe work practices for installing, maintaining, and using stairs, ladders, and scaffolds.

Course Topics:
OSHA Walking – Working Surfaces Regulation (29 CFR 1910.21-30, Subpart D)
Key terminology and concepts
Letters of interpretation that show how OSHA responds to implementation questions
The consequences of poor housekeeping
The difference between standard rail guards and handrails
Hazards of wall and floor holes
Specifications for safe design and construction of fixed general industry stairs
Minimum requirements for dockboards
Proper care and use of portable ladders
General scaffolding requirements

Who Should Attend:
All general industry worker and supervisors

Regulatory Requirements:
29 CFR 1910.21-30, Subpart D

Man in a hardhat standing inside a warehouse

Assisting Mass Municipal Agencies in Preparing for the 2019 OSHA Requirements

Updated OSHA Compliance with MGL has begun!

Here is a simple one-pager on how United Alliance Services can help get you into compliance!

OSHA Safety Training for Municipalities & Schools

Beginning February 2019, public employees are required to provide OSHA safety training and maintain OSHA compliance with job sites and safety training.

OSHA – UASC Training for MUNICIPALITIES:

  • Address the OSHA training requirements specific to each department
  • Training standards help municipalities perform jobs safely reducing worker comp, medical leave times, and injuries on the job.
  • Choose up to six electives that best suits your team members.
  • We maintain copies of all training’s, so if your system is compromised, we have a backup.
  • We’ll notify you when refreshers need to be renewed, so it’s one less thing to fall through the cracks.
  • We have developed the training programs allowing you to focus on your area of expertise

Click here for OSHA Safety Training for Municipalities!

OSHA – UASC Training for SCHOOLS:

  • Experienced OSHA safety regulations instructors
  • Help school employees perform their jobs safely by outlining first-hand, real-life scenarios
  • You choose the sessions that best suit your team members as you know them best
  • We maintain backup copies of all training documentation
  • Notifications when refreshers need to be renewed
  • We have developed the training programs, which is our area of expertise, to allow you to focus on your area of expertise – running an efficient school system.

Click here for OSHA Safety Training for MA Schools!

Record Keeping

Prior to the new law, the public sector was exempt from maintaining an OSHA 300 log. The MA Department of Labor Standards (DLS) now states that you only need to provide your OSHA 300 log when an inspector or the Bureau of Labor Statistics requests to see it.

The best practice is to maintain an OSHA 300 log.

OSHA 300 Log for MA Public Sector

An OSHA 300 log is used by private sector employers with more than 10 employees to maintain a record of injuries and illnesses that took place and are referred to as a “recordable”.

All of the recordables are documented, but each record also needs a form 301 completed, which details the injury/illness.

A recordable includes any work-related illness and/or injury that results in:

• Fatality
• loss of consciousness, missed work, restricted work, transfer to a lower-risk job
• medical treatment beyond first aid
• diagnosis of a work-related cancer, chronic irreversible disease, fractured or cracked bones/teeth, and punctured eardrums
• any drugs being prescribed or taken at prescription strength

Needle-sticks and sharps injuries, medical removal, hearing loss, and tuberculosis have special recording criteria.

Man in a hardhat standing inside a warehouse

UASC @ The MMA Annual Meeting & Trade Show

To conclude our series of blogs, we are excited to announce our attendance to The MMA Annual Meeting & Trade Show 1/18/19 – 1/19/19!

Blog #1
Blog #2
Blog #3

Updated MGL with OSHA compliance

In correspondence to the updated MGL Chapter 149, section 6 1/2 we are here to answer any questions.

On March 9, 2018, Massachusetts rolled out an updated MGL Chapter 149, section 6 1/2 to include reference to OSHA regulations, updating the law written before OSHA’s inception. It has left public sector employers scrambling to figure out exactly how they are affected and how to quickly get into compliance within the short time frame provided. The updated law helps clarify the responsibilities of public sector employers, which is enforced by the Massachusetts Department of Labor Standards (DLS), while giving everyone less than a year to become in compliance.

The MMA Annual Meeting & Trade Show

This the largest regular gathering of Massachusetts local government officials. This show features educational workshops, nationally recognized speakers, awards programs, a large trade show, and an opportunity to network with municipal officials from across the state.

Shortly after this, the new Massachusetts Department of Labor Standards’ safety training mandates on the public sector will be enforceable and United Alliance Services Corporation is ready to connect with you. We have already secured our booth at the tradeshow to answer questions you may have about the new mandate and how your department will be affected. Our consultants have decades of experience with OSHA safety standards and can easily apply them to various departments to ensure the best training is delivered.

Our safety consultants and training department have weeded through the requirements and have pulled together a blog series to shed some light on the changes, help you determine the training you need, and bring your department into compliance.

We have created custom packages for municipalities and schools that are budget-friendly, easy to deliver, and satisfies the requirements:

OSHA Safety Training for MA Schools

OSHA Safety Training for Municipalities

Please stop by our booth #712 to learn more!