New Line of Flexible Containment Berms Provides Even More Containment Options

Spill 911 recently added a new line of flexible containment berms from Justrite Manufacturing that will provide it’s customers with even more options for flexible spill containment.

Below are a list of the new berm options and descriptions on how they can help you in the field:

Decon QuickBerms

The Decon QuickBerm is a portable, multi-zone decontamination station that you can deploy quickly and easily while in the field to prevent environmental contamination. Their interior walls create wash-down zones that will safely capture and contain contaminated solutions. They are available 2, 3 or 4 zones. Their PVC-coated fabric provides a wide range of chemical resistance and the 8-inch walls allow for easy entry and exit. Each zone is equipped with a 3/4-inch drain. For more information on these berms, click here.

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New Approval Defines Acceptable Interior Storage of Chemicals & Processes

Beginning on October 1, 2014, the FM Approvals standard (FM 6049) has been updated with some changes regarding the storage of chemicals inside of facilities.

The new standard now states that all flammable chemical storage buildings placed inside of facilities must provide 1-hour fire-rated construction, be connected with the facilities sprinkler system (no independent dry chem systems) and provide a 25% containment sump which drains to a separate holding pond/sump. Previously approved non-combustible, 2 and 4-hour fire-rated buildings are now FM Approved only for placement outside of the facility.

This new standard only impacts FM customers. It is important to note that much of this new approval can be viewed as in conflict with what is acceptable under NFPA 30, and that non-FM facilities should still defer to NFPA 30 standards. FM and non-FM facilities should always check with their local authorities before purchasing any modular storage building to ensure they are in compliance with all local regulations.

FM Approvals come from a third-party entity that provides certifications for products to meet certain industry standards and protects properties from experiencing loss. For more information on FM Approvals, click here.

Spill 911 carries a number of chemical storage buildings from some of the industries’ leading manufacturers, including Denios, Inc. and Securall/A&A Sheet Metal Products, which you can access by clicking here to view them on our website. If you have questions on these buildings or any of our other products, please contact one of our customer service representatives at 800-474-5911.


Increase Employee Commitment to Safety

Creating a safe workplace requires more than just displaying posters and giving lip service to OSHA regulations. Establishing the required safety procedures is the first step, but training your employees and following through is the only way to achieve your safety goals. Your employees must be motivated and working safely should be a positive part of the daily routine, not a dreaded objective.

Safety Starts at the Top

Whether you have five employees or 500, setting the standards for a safe facility begins at the top. If the company leaders ignore safety procedures, employees cannot be expected to. One of the big areas to consider is the role of supervisors or managers. These are the individuals your workers will look to on a daily basis.

If supervisors are rewarded only for meeting production goals, the focus is not what it should be. Production, maintenance and safety should be a package goal. Without looking at the entire picture, workers may be encouraged to take shortcuts simply to meet production. This method will backfire — machinery failures and time lost due to injuries will decrease production.

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How to Use a BioRem-2000 Solvent Spill Kit

Solvent spills can be potentially hazardous if they aren’t identified and cleaned up right away. Luckily, Spill 911 can help you do just that with its BioRem-2000 Solvent Spill Kit.

This micro-powdered kit will not only absorb the spill but elevates the flashpoint above 60 degrees Celsius, which will significantly reduce the flammability. This kit will work on most common hydrocarbon solvents, fuel spills and reagents.

Below are step-by-step instructions on how to use the BioRem-2000 Solvent Spill Kit:

1. Identify and obtain your personal protective equipment.  Wear and use all protective equipment contained in the kit at all times before, during and after spill clean-up.

2. Apply BioRem-2000™ Super Absorber to the spill around its perimeter to dike the    liquid, being careful not to inhale the vapors and avoid splashing the spilled material.

3. Spray BioRem-2000™ Surface Cleaner onto the solvent spill covering the entire spill area to eliminate ignition hazards and to neutralize the solvent.

4. Cover the entire spill area with the BioRem-2000™ Super Absorber to absorb any remaining material.

5. Place waste in disposal bags provided and properly dispose of waste according to regulations in your area.

For more information or to place an online order for the BioRem-2000 Solvent Spill Kit, click here. If you have any questions on this spill kit or any of our other products, please contact one of our customer service representatives at 800-474-5911.

What Does an Accident Cost?

Accidents cost all employers and employees more than just the financial impact of medical bills and increases in insurance. Both the business and the workers involved face numerous direct and indirect costs.

In 2012, there were close to 3 million non-fatal workplace injuries reported to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Fatal injuries amounted to 4,628. The construction industry accounted for 19.3 percent of these deaths, with the highest cause of death coming from falls. With the high occurrence of accidents leading to injury and death, the construction industry must recognize the significant financial impact that accidents have.

Workers’ Compensation and Insurance Cost Increases

Employers will often pay for minor medical bills and lost job time out of their own pockets. This becomes a direct expense. When workers’ compensation pays claims, employers can face an increase in the premiums they are required to pay.

The same increase in premiums can occur for an employer’s liability insurance for property damages that occur during an accident. In the construction industry, damage to the site, vehicles and tools must be considered. Some of these costs may not be covered and must be paid out of pocket.

Time Lost on the Job

A major cost to any employer is the productivity of a trained worker. Skilled trade workers are not easy to replace and job progress will suffer. Employers must find and potentially train replacements or put other workers into overtime situations. If deadlines are not met, companies can face fines, which add to the cost of accidents.

Investigations and Inspections

Accidents often lead to investigation or inspection by OSHA or insurers. The construction industry is high on the list for OSHA investigations due to the number of accidents in general. A business facing an inspection will need to spend time and money to ensure that the facility or site is up to standards. Time will be required of company personnel during the inspection. In any operation, this time is money.

Legal and Managerial

Each state has specific guidelines for workers’ compensation claims. Not all workplace accidents are covered by workers’ compensation in all states. An employee not following employer-established safety procedures, or under the influence of alcohol or drugs, may not be covered.

Regardless of the outcome of any investigation, the business is required to produce documents regarding the accident, safety policies and proof of training. A considerable amount of paperwork is involved when processing medical claims. The time of the employees handling the paperwork must be included when considering the total cost of the accident.

Injured workers also have the option of not accepting workers’ compensation benefits, which then allows the injured party to file suit against the employer. In this case, the business will face legal costs for defending the company in a court of law.

Mandatory Training

When an employer has reported an accident, the state workers’ compensation authority may require the completion of additional training programs. For example, in the state of Ohio, employers receiving group-rating plans must complete an extra two hours of training per year to continue in the plan for just one accident in a calendar year.

The number of hours of training, and the requirements for who must complete the training, can increase with an uptick in accidents. While the initial training program would be required to continue to receive a group-plan cost, continued accidents might require training in order to receive any type of affordable coverage.

Costs to Employees

Each state sets the amount of compensation awarded per week, month or injury. This amount is normally two-thirds of the usual wages. For lower-wage workers, the maximum benefit is usually sufficient. Skilled trade workers may receive less than their normal weekly wages, especially if overtime is often included.

However, the cost to the employee is much more than just the wage loss. In most cases, a worker will experience pain and the inability to enjoy normal non-work activities. Depending on the severity of the injury, a worker can face a permanent full or partial disability. A trade that an employee spent years perfecting may no longer be an employment option.

Even with minor injuries, the employee must make frequent trips to doctor’s offices or therapy appointments; the transportation is the responsibility of the worker. Workers’ compensation only covers medical bills, wages and job re-training — pain and suffering are not included in the calculations. When a worker accepts compensation benefits, he or she gives up the right to sue the employer.

When all of the hidden costs of an accident are considered, it is easy to see the significant financial impact. The indirect costs can be several times the actual medical costs. The amount that a company invests in safety is far less than the cost of an unsafe work place.

This is a guest blog post from Minerallac, a family-owned manufacturer and distributor of electrical construction and safety equipment. Since 1894, they have been getting the proper equipment into the hands of construction workers.