Blog

Cold Weather Means Cold & Flu Season – Know the Difference and How to Prevent Sickness

You know the drill – the Fall season means it’s time to pay closer attention to that sniffly nose or chest congestion, especially at work where the spread of illness is common. What’s more is that many times it can be difficult to decipher which respiratory illness you are experiencing, as the flu and common cold have similar symptoms. Why is that important to know? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), colds generally do not result in serious health problems, such as pneumonia, bacterial infections, or hospitalizations, but the flu can have very serious associated complications.

So, let’s dive into the issues and preventative care you can do today to avoid getting sick, keeping you – and your workplace – healthy.

Shoo, Flu

Now’s a great time to be talking about the flu – influenza activity often begins to increase in October and November. Flu symptoms can include fever or feeling feverish/chills, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches and fatigue (tiredness). The CDC says that the flu is a serious contagious disease that can lead to hospitalization and even death, but there are 3 things you can do to fight the flu:

  1. Take time to get the flu vaccine.
    • The CDC recommends a yearly flu vaccine as the first and most important step in protecting against flu viruses.
    • While there are many different flu viruses, a flu vaccine protects against the viruses that research suggests will be most common.
    • Flu vaccination can reduce flu illnesses, doctors’ visits, and missed work and school due to flu, as well as prevent flu-related hospitalizations.
    • Everyone 6 months of age and older should get a flu vaccine every year before flu activity begins in their community. CDC recommends getting vaccinated by the end of October, if possible.
    • People at high risk of serious flu complications include young children, pregnant women, people with certain chronic health conditions like asthma, diabetes or heart and lung disease and people 65 years and older.
    • Vaccination also is important for health care workers, and other people who live with or care for high risk people to keep from spreading flu to them.
    • Children younger than 6 months are at high risk of serious flu illness, but are too young to be vaccinated. People who care for infants should be vaccinated instead.
  2. Take preventative measures everyday to help stop the spread of germs.
    • Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
    • While sick, limit contact with others as much as possible to keep from infecting them.
    • If you are sick with flu symptoms, CDC recommends that you stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone except to get medical care or for other necessities.
    • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread this way.
    • Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs like the flu.
  3. Take flu antiviral drugs if your doctor prescribes them.
    • If you get the flu, antiviral drugs can be used to treat your illness.
    • Antiviral drugs are different from antibiotics; they are prescription medicines and are not available over-the-counter.
    • Antiviral drugs can make illness milder and shorten the time you are sick and may also prevent serious flu complications.
    • Studies show that flu antiviral drugs work best for treatment when they are started within 2 days of getting sick, but starting them later can still be helpful, especially if the sick person has a high risk factor or is very sick from the flu.

Hit the Road, Cold

Did you know that common colds are the main reason that children miss school and adults miss work? Each year in the United States, the CDC reports millions of cases of the common cold, with adults having an average of 2-3 colds per year and children even more. Cold symptoms are usually milder than the symptoms of flu and generally do not result in serious health problems. People with colds are more likely to have a runny or stuffy nose with some chest congestion and nothing more. Here’s how to send that cold to the curb:

  1. Take small preventative measures throughout the day.
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer; viruses that cause colds can live on your hands, and regular hand-washing can help protect you from getting sick.
    • Disinfect frequently touched surfaces, and objects such as toys and doorknobs
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands; viruses that cause colds can enter your body this way and make you sick.
  2. Protect others from catching your cold.
    • Sick people can spread viruses that cause the common cold through close contact with others.
    • Avoid close contact with others, such as hugging, kissing, or shaking hands.Stay at home while you are sick.
    • Practice good cough and sneeze etiquette: always cough and sneeze into a tissue or your upper shirt sleeve, completely covering your mouth and nose.
  3. There is no cure or antibiotic for a cold.
    • To feel better, you should get lots of rest and drink plenty of fluids.
    • Over-the-counter medicines may help ease symptoms but will not make your cold go away any faster.
    • Call your doctor if you have one or more of these conditions:
      • A temperature higher than 100.4° F
      • Symptoms that last more than 10 days
      • Symptoms that are severe or unusual

Prevention and Treatment Video

As a safety consulting company, we are fortunate to work with several companies that understand the need for prevention, care, and awareness of sickness in the workplace, especially during the cold and flu season. One of our trusted partners – Vivid Learning Systems – is just one of those companies. Vivid works to deliver an effective, memorable training experience with training software that’s designed for smart simplicity.

That being said, we’d like to share with you a free 5 minute video presentation on what you can do to prevent contraction of and transmission of cold and influenza viruses, as well as actions to take if they become infected. Take a peek at what this course will cover:

  • Describe the route of exposure for both cold and flu viruses
  • List methods to reduce exposure and the effects of exposure to the common cold and influenza
  • List the benefits of an annual influenza vaccination
  • Describe high-risk people who should make an annual influenza vaccination a priority
  • Identify symptoms of infection
  • Describe the actions one should take if they feel sick
  • Recognize emergency warning signs of influenza-related illness

To watch, visit here:

https://vividlearningsystems.com/courses/5-minute/cold-flu-and-transmissible-illness-prevention

Need training or more info on what to do in your workplace regarding illness? Give us a call to discuss your options… and stay healthy!

It’s Time to Check in with 2018 – What’s on OSHA’s Docket for Next Year?

Another year has flown by, but that’s okay; it’s another year where we get to do what we do best – help our clients and their employees stay safe and in compliance… and stay prepared. And now’s a better time than ever to get prepared for 2018 by checking in with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and their plans for next year.

Over the past year, there’s been talk of budget cuts and otherwise, but OSHA is working harder than ever to ensure workplaces are kept safe in 2018. Here’s what you can look forward to:

Respirable Crystalline Silica – To better protect workers exposed to respirable crystalline silica, OSHA has issued two new respirable crystalline silica standards: one for construction, and the other for general industry and maritime. OSHA began enforcing most provisions of the standard for construction on September 23, 2017, and will begin enforcing most provisions of the standard for general industry and maritime on June 23, 2018.

General Industry Walking-Working Surfaces and Fall Protection – OSHA has issued a final rule on Walking-Working Surfaces and Personal Fall Protection Systems to better protect workers in general industry from these hazards by updating and clarifying standards and adding training and inspection requirements. Must of this rule came into effect in January 2017, but here’s what’s ahead for November 19, 2018:

  • Installing personal fall arrest or ladder safety systems on new fixed ladders over 24 feet and on replacement ladders/ladder sections, including fixed ladders on outdoor advertising structures.
  • Ensuring existing fixed ladders over 24 feet, including those on outdoor advertising structures, are equipped with a cage, well, personal fall arrest system, or ladder safety system.

Cranes & Derricks in Construction – With the significant safety issues to be considered, both for the operators of the diverse “lifting” devices, and for workers in proximity to them, a lot of careful training and extensive workplace precautions have been developed for these operations – the most recent being a notice of proposed rulemaking for the Crane Operator Certification Extension. OSHA is proposing to delay the enforcement date for crane operator certification for one year from November 10, 2017, to November 10, 2018.

What does this mean for you? If your company or employees are involved in any of these areas, it’s time for some updated consulting and even training to ensure you’re up-to-date and in compliance. Now’s a great time to get ahead of the game, and Evolved Safety can help. If you have any questions or comments, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Consistency & Best Practice

As someone with safety responsibility we understand that you will most likely have a health and safety management program in place and that’s great news!

Here at Evolved Safety, we work with businesses like yours and often find safety management combines multiple systems with spreadsheets and databases to achieve ‘fingers crossed’ compliance.  This is then replicated across multiple sites and locations…and then the human factor is added in. All of this combines to make it very difficult to work to your agreed standard.

To show how we could drive consistency and best practice to underpin compliance across the organization, we have arranged for one of our experts to put together an informative 20-minute webinar that will cover the common issues we see and the how we can assist you to solve them.   This is complimentary and without obligation.

The webinar will run on Tuesday, November 14th from 2:00- 2:30 pm EST.

Click here to secure your place »

Places are limited so please don’t hesitate to register should you wish to attend.

Welcome to Fall – And Fire Prevention Week Do You Know What to Do at Home? At Work?

National Fire Prevention Week is this month, and we want to make sure you know what to do should a fire break out not only at home, but at work, too – and the key is prevention.

Every year in October, the National Fire Protection Association works to bring awareness to the public regarding fire safety, fire prevention, and emergency planning. This year, Fire Prevention Week is taking place Oct 8-14 with the theme: “Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!”. Here’s this year’s key campaign messages for your fire prevention plan at home, straight from NFPA:

  • Draw a map of your home with all members of your household, marking two exits from each room and a path to the outside from each exit.
  • Practice your home fire drill twice a year. Conduct one at night and one during the day with everyone in your home, and practice using different ways out.
  • Teach children how to escape on their own in case you can’t help them.
  • Make sure the number of your home is clearly marked and easy for the fire department to find.
  • Close doors behind you as you leave – this may slow the spread of smoke, heat, and fire.
  • Once you get outside, stay outside. Never go back inside a burning building.

Fire Prevention at Work

Aside from “stay calm, and exit the building,” do you know your company’s fire safety strategy? Take a moment and think about your workplace fire prevention and emergency plan… do you have one? Has your employer discussed it with you and your coworkers?

The same procedures listed above can be applied to your workplace, albeit on a larger and more specific scale. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) states that employers should train workers about fire hazards in the workplace and about what to do in a fire emergency. For example, if workers need to evacuate, they should be trained on how to escape, or if workers must know how to fight small fires, they should be given the appropriate equipment and trained to use the equipment safely.

As stated by OSHA, all fire prevention plans must:

  • Include housekeeping procedures for storage and cleanup of flammable materials and flammable waste.
  • Address handling and packaging of flammable waste. Additionally, recycling of flammable waste, i.e. paper, is encouraged.
  • Cover procedures for controlling workplace ignition sources, such as smoking, welding, and burning.
  • Provide for proper cleaning and maintenance of heat producing equipment, such as burners, heat exchangers, boilers, ovens, stoves, and fryers, and require storage of flammables away from this equipment.
  • Inform workers of the potential fire hazards of their jobs and plan procedures.
  • Require plan review with all new employees and with all employees whenever the plan is changed.
How can you stay safe at home and at work? Download this list to hang at home, at work, or both for an excellent reminder of what you can do to prevent and prepare for a fire. »

Stay Informed, Faster – We’ve Updated Our Catalog!

Why are you good at your job? Because you stay in “The Know”. You know what’s going on in your company, and if you don’t, you figure it out. And that is exactly how we want to help you stay successful – by keeping you in The Know with Evolved Safety.

We’ve had so many additions and changes in this past year that we had to update our catalog before next year’s edition! With new vendors and training materials hitting us left and right, you’ll want to take a look.

Check out these additional new resources:

  • New Safety Management System offering from SHE Health & Safety Software
  • New training titles from SafetySkills, UL, and more!
  • More courses available in more foreign languages
  • New vendors include SHE Health & Safety Software, Digital 2000, Advantage Alert Driving, and more!

Our goal is to help meet your requirements and solve your challenges, and we hope that with these new and additional resources, we can continue to help find the right products and services for you.

See for yourself and download now! »

No Translation Needed… SafetySkills has NEW Courses in Foreign Languages

When SafetySkills says they work hard to develop high-end, competency-based, custom-built e-learning courses to help industries around the globe stay up-to-date and in compliance with environmental and occupational needs – they mean it. Our trusted partner SafetySkills just launched courses in German, Portuguese, and Mandarin to help you meet your EH&S training needs.

Take a look… and listen!

  • Electrical Safety
  • Compressed Gas Safety
  • Basic First Aid
  • Bloodborne Pathogens
  • Fall Protection
  • Slips, Trips and Falls
  • Forklift Operator Training
  • Personal Protective Equipment
  • Ladder Safety
  • Fire Safety
  • Hearing Conservation
  • Lockout/Tagout

Courses are available as highly interactive, engaging online training, with student training activity, scheduling, and reporting easily managed in their learning management software.

Any of these titles sound like training you need? Contact us at 844-528-4486 or info@evolvedsafety.com for more information.

NSC is Happening THIS MONTH! Come visit us at Booth #602!

We’ll be hittin’ the road later this month… Join us at the 2017 NSC Congress & Expo in Indianapolis, IN September 25 – 27!

Aside from the fact that we love it – the NSC Congress & Expo is the world’s largest annual “must attend” event for safety, health, and environmental professionals. It’s been around for over 100 years to demonstrate the industry-leading technology, education, networking opportunities, and products and services needed to stay at the top of your safety game.

And for Evolved Safety, it gives us a chance to showcase our current offerings and help us keep a pulse on the industry so we can continue to offer products and services that are innovative and relevant for YOU. We’ll be on the expo floor, Booth #602, all three days of the exhibition.

And for you? The best thing is that you get to come say hi to us in person, with the added benefit of seeing all kinds of vendors, speakers, products, and more! But in all honestly, it’s a great way to learn more about an industry that we all love – safety.

Contact us for information on registration and more!

Break Down the Language Border – Train Your Global Workforce with Evolved Safety

A company doesn’t have to have locations around the world to require training in multiple languages. Maybe you outsource your manufacturing or have an office in another country. Or maybe you employ immigrant workers whose native language isn’t English. Whatever your situation, do you have the training that will accommodate those workers to ensure their safety?

We found a very notable statistic we’d like to share with you – according to the International Labour Organization, everyday, 6,300 people die as a result of occupational accidents or work-related diseases – more than 2.3 million deaths per year. That’s hard to imagine, as here in the United States, we had just under 5,000 fatal workplace injuries in 2015, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. And of the U.S. fatalities, Latino workers had a significantly higher fatality rate compared to non-Latino white workers, with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) reporting that language differences between immigrant workers and their supervisors/coworkers are one of the most frequently cited challenges companies face in promoting safety among immigrant workers. Around the world, this situation is one that companies with global workers face every day.

That being said, there is a greater need than ever to consider if a global safety training plan is relevant to you and your organization.

It’s true, though, that training a global workforce can be tricky – there are all kinds of articles out there to support the the challenging aspects of offering globalized workplace safety training. Take an article in the Huffington Post, for one, that talks about the mistakes companies make when considering global safety training. It mentions that many companies focus on the fact that the law said they have to have a plan instead of focusing on how important it is for the well-being of their employees, as well as fail to take into account things like linguistic diversity, high costs, and time zones that can present additional challenges all of their own.

The good news? The benefits outweigh the challenges. And some of the challenges are made easier or aren’t challenges at all when you find the right workplace safety training. That’s where we come in.

Train smarter, not harder with Evolved Safety. As the employer, creating a health and safety plan that encompasses your global workers shouldn’t take more work than necessary. We get it – finding the right training can be difficult. But with the right consulting team by your side, finding a global safety training solution to fit your needs is easy.

We recommend an online training solution that includes a Learning Management System (LMS) to deliver your international training. We’ll work with you to find the perfect vendor that will solve all of the challenges mentioned previously and then some. Take a peek:

  • Customization – Customize courses to solve translation issues, cultural concerns, and education levels for a highly tailored online training program that fits the needs of even a very small segment of your workforce.
  • Time-Efficient and Inexpensive – Online training is perfect for any size company looking for something budget-friendly that doesn’t require hired professionals for content creation or instruction.
  • Time Zone Friendly – Access you and your employee’s online training from anywhere, at any time, regardless of location. With online training, you can even include recorded webinars and video training sessions for an in-person experience.
  • Consistent Training – Ensure consistency and compliance with a LMS that gives you and your employees a centralized dashboard to manage training and performance.

For more questions or concerns regarding your global safety training needs, shoot us an email or give us a call today for a conversation.

 

Proactive Safety Management Webinar

In your role as the safety professional at your company, we understand that your role and responsibilities require you to react and follow up on a wide array of issues that come up daily. We are introducing short informative webinars that will focus on the move away from reactive safety management towards a proactive culture.

Evolved Safety and SHE Software are regularly approached by organizations where safety professionals require support to help senior managers recognize the benefits of moving away from a reactionary culture to a more positive process.

We find that, in many of these organizations, the staff responsible for managing safety have a high administrative burden and spend most of their time re-entering data, reworking incorrect records, searching for information, updating documents, manual reporting and chasing actions.  These inefficient processes prevent them from promoting proactive health and safety.

To demonstrate how we can help you free up that time to proactively manage health and safety across your company to improve safety performance as well as demonstrating financial and productivity benefits, we have arranged for one of our experts to run a 20-minute webinar that will cover the common admin burdens we see and how we can assist you to solve them.

You are invited to attend the webinar on Thursday, September 14th at 2:00 pm Eastern time.  Places are limited so please do not hesitate to register should you wish to attend.

We have over 850 global organizations using our solutions. Click here to view some of our customers.

Get Even MORE Choices in Driver Safety Training! Evolved Safety Partners with AlertDriving

We’re steering our way to increased safety on the road with our new partner… We are happy to announce that Evolved Safety has partnered with Alert Driving to offer you even MORE choices for your driver safety training needs, and we’re excited to tell you about it.

Let’s face it – we drive everyday, and that means your employees drive everyday, too… whether it be office workers, delivery workers, or otherwise. An upwards of 250 million people are licensed to drive in the United States, and the number is only growing. With it, come more driving accidents and incidents that can cause worker injury, time away from work, worker’s compensation, and more… so more vendor options means we can find a better training fit your company.

What we like about Alert Driving is that they work hard to deliver personalized, fully interactive training programs targeted to each and every driver’s specific risk factors. This gives you the ability to start tracking driver behavior fleet-wide from one location, all with worldwide content delivery, superior data scalability, and full-service program support from day one. Check out these driver topics:

  • Defensive Driver Training
  • Fuel Efficient Eco Training
  • Service Vehicle Training
  • Commercial Truck Training
  • Large Passenger Van Training
  • Medium Duty Vocational Trucks Training
  • CSA Driver Training
  • Powered-Two Wheel Training
  • Trailer Training

We love choices, especially when it comes to training. Why? Because it’s our job to find the training that best matches your needs, and more choice with companies like Alert Driving let’s us do that for you.

Want to see if Alert Driving has a topic you need? Give us a call and let’s discuss!