Contractor, Hispanic worker deaths up in 2013, BLS says

By Talia Buford

The number of contractors and Hispanic workers who died on the job increased in 2013 even as the overall tally of worker deaths declined.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Jerry Brown":

"… ety violations. Employee advocates herald the bill, which is awaiting Gov. Jerry Brown’s signature, as a blueprint for worker protection laws around the countr …"

CPI-NPR collaboration wins Edward R. Murrow Award

A 2013 investigation of worker deaths in grain bins has won an Edward R. Murrow Award from the Radio Television Digital News Association

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… pments in 2010, the worst year in decades. And yet, from 1984 to 2013, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration cut initial fines for entrapment deaths by nearly 60 percent overall, an a …"

Saturated with oil money, Texas legislature saved industry from pollution rule

By David Hasemyer, Ben Wieder and Alan Suderman

An effort to impose stricter rules on Texas oil and gas operators in 2011 fizzled after the state legislature got involved.

Excerpts from this story referencing "oil":

"… Texas — In January 2011, with air quality worsening in Texas’ booming oil and gas fields and the federal government beginning to take notice, state …"

"… applied in the Eagle Ford Shale region of South Texas, the fastest-growing oil shale play in the nation and maybe the world. Since then, more than 2,400 …"

"… thed by 1.1 million people. The Texas legislature’s rush to protect the oil and gas industry reflects a culture in which politics and business are alm …"

"… m Craddick, who championed the House version of SB1134, owns stock in nine oil companies, five of which are active in the Eagle Ford. At the end of 2013, …"

High bladder cancer rate shrouds New York plant, exposing chemical hazards in the workplace

By Jim Morris

A decades-long spate of bladder cancer at a Goodyear plant in Niagara Falls, N.Y. spotlights limits of regulation over dangerous chemicals.

Excerpts from this story referencing "National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health":

"… ka alerted the OCAW international, which requested an investigation by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health — NIOSH, part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Things …"

OSHA rule targets worker exposure to silica

By Jim Morris

Citing concerns over the deadly lung disease silicosis and lung cancer, OSHA on Friday proposed a rule to control worker exposure to silica.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… e not being able to live to see his grandchildren?” Monforton asked. …"

IMPACT: OSHA strengthens rules for 'model workplace' program

By Chris Hamby

IMPACT: Companies exempted from some safety inspections under an OSHA program will face automatic removal after work-related deaths.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… deaths or particularly serious violations. The new policy, issued by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, comes after a 2011 Center for Public Integrity investigation found a sign …"

'Retail exemption' shields some fertilizer facilities from stringent safety inspections, rules

By Chris Hamby

An exemption carved out two decades ago allows some fertilizer and other chemical facilities to skirt stricter rules and inspections.

Excerpts from this story referencing "spokesman":

"… eamlined prevention program” with environmental regulators, a government spokesman confirmed. The owner of the facility near Waco, West Chemical and Fertili …"

"… Administration is investigating whether this claim was justified, an OSHA spokesman said. By claiming the exemption, the company became subject to other, les …"

"… eck on the validity of an exemption unless it inspects the site, an agency spokesman confirmed. The Fertilizer Institute said in a statement to the Center for …"

"… th low reported injury rates off-limits for regular inspections, an agency spokesman said. The site had not been inspected since 1985. Invocation of the “re …"

OSHA strengthens protections for temp workers

By Jim Morris

Amid reports of high injury rates for temporary workers, OSHA announces new measures aimed at training and safety.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… ned in a Chicago-area factory in November 2011 and died three weeks later. Occupational Safety and Health Administration records obtained by the Center concluded that Centeno’s bosses refused t …"

Workplace deaths up slightly in 2011

By Jim Morris

Worker deaths rose slightly in 2011, though the jobsite fatality rate fell, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Labor":

"… as fertilizer plant explosion last week that killed 14, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today that 4,693 workers died on the job in 2011, thre …"

Thoughts from our board chair, Bruce Finzen

By Bruce Finzen

Chair of Center's Board of Directors will match donations through May 7.

Why strong regulatory agencies matter

By Bill Buzenberg

If the Center is doing its job right, then our work should anticipate the news. Unfortunately, that happened with an explosion in Texas.

Excerpts from this story referencing "chemical safety":

"… releases. The proposal received support from many organizations focused on chemical safety which have long advocated for a more complete reporting system that would …"

As critics press for action, Chemical Safety Board investigations languish

By Jim Morris and Chris Hamby

The U.S. Chemical Safety Board, which probes chemical accidents, is under attack for its slow investigative pace.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Kim Nibarger":

"… We have been harping on how dangerous it is for quite some time,” said Kim Nibarger, a health and safety specialist with the Steelworkers. The union thought …"

Report urges phaseout of deadly acid

By Chris Hamby

A survey of refinery workers found deep concern about the handling of hydrofluoric acid and recommends safer alternatives

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… ng. The report also recommends stronger oversight by regulators. Both the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency should better use their authority …"

U.S. asbestos imports condemned by health experts, activists

By Jim Morris

More than 50 countries have banned asbestos, a toxic mineral linked to cancer and other diseases. The United States isn't one of them.

Excerpts from this story referencing "chemical industry":

"… t challenge. The USGS says the chlor-alkali industry — a segment of the chemical industry that makes chlorine and a caustic soda called sodium hydroxide – account …"

New federal scrutiny in wake of Center and NPR grain bin 'drownings' report

By Howard Berkes

The Justice Department might again consider criminal charges in case reported by Center and NPR.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Haasbach LLC":

"… was unable to save his friends and co-workers. The owner of the grain bin, Haasbach LLC, was initially fined $555,000 but OSHA cut the fine by more than 60 percen …"

"… s that happens this kind of thing is not going to stop," Whitebread says. Haasbach LLC has declined comment given wrongful death and injury lawsuits filed by Pip …"

Bill aims to strengthen OSHA workplace enforcement

By Chris Hamby

Senators propose tighter workplace safety rules, targeting breakdowns highlighted in Center for Public Integrity reports.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… s did not respond to interview requests Thursday. The bill would give the Occupational Safety and Health Administration more powerful enforcement tools. Currently, an employer whose willful vio …"

Worker suffocations persist as grain storage soars, employers flout safety rules

By Jim Morris and Howard Berkes

The 2010 deaths of a 14-year-old boy and a 19-year-old man in an Illinois grain bin highlight unsafe practices, spotty enforcement.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… in the corn,” Piper told investigators with the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Grain storage in the United States is surging, in part because of the bo …"

Rethinking OSHA exemption for farms

By Jim Morris and Howard Berkes

Most farms are exempt from federal workplace safety rules. Given ongoing grain entrapment problems, some say they shouldn't be.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… nvolving workers under 16. Commercial operations are overseen by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Most farms aren’t — but perhaps should be, some say. “We’ve …"

How industry scientists stalled action on carcinogen

By David Heath

Tens of millions of Americans drink tap water tainted with chromium. But industry pushback has made it hard for the EPA to regulate.

Excerpts from this story referencing "spokesman":

"… all of the significant authors or the funding. Paustenbach said through a spokesman that the rules did not require disclosure because the amount paid Zhang wa …"

House bill targets deadly dust explosions

By Chris Hamby

House Democrats are pushing a bill requiring safety steps to curb combustible dust explosions -- a hazard examined in a 2012 Center report.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… rs from materials as varied as sugar, coal, wood and plastic. The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration began the process of issuing a rule to address the hazard in 2009, but its …"

Report suggests OSHA safeguard contingent workers

By Chris Hamby

Regulators should launch an enforcement blitz of companies using large numbers of contingent workers, a nonprofit group concludes.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… ercent of his body. The company failed to call 911, according to a federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration report obtained by the Center, and more than 98 minutes passed between the …"

Labor secretary leaves legacy of worker protections and unfinished business

By Chris Hamby

Labor Secretary Hilda Solis leaves behind a department advocates say increased enforcement but left worker safety rules unfinished.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… ringing stronger enforcement of worker safety laws. During her tenure, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Mine Safety and Health Administration expanded initiatives to crac …"

Even after workplace deaths, companies avoid OSHA penalties

By Chris Hamby

Following jobsite fatalities, OSHA vows crackdowns -- but sometimes collects nothing, a Center investigation found.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… d a few months later. “We pulled him out, and that was it.”The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited Crucible for more than 70 violations and levied almost $250,000 in f …"

About the Methodology

Across the U.S., workers die in preventable accidents. Yet often, a Center investigation found, OSHA reduces fines or waives them entirely.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… Integrity’s analysis relies on data from multiple sources, including the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the Treasury Department and the Justice Department. Using the Freedom of …"

IMPACT: OSHA's 'model workplace' program needs reform, report finds

By Chris Hamby

Companies exempt from some inspections under a special OSHA program should face tighter scrutiny, a report finds, echoing a Center series.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… ndustry leaders.A report suggesting reforms, from a task force of the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration, comes more than a year after a Center for Public Integrity series reveale …"

Kentucky death case: Another black eye for state workplace safety enforcement

By Jim Morris

Kentucky's deletion of all violations in worker death case criticized by victim's family, feds.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… a formal complaint against Kentucky with the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration, which concluded in June 2011 that the state had erred.“Deleting citatio …"

Landmark worker death case continues against UCLA chemistry professor

By Jim Morris

UCLA Professor Patrick Harran stands accused of a felony in the death of research associate Sheri Sangji after a lab fire.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Center for Investigative Reporting":

"… respond to interview requests from the Center for Public Integrity and the Center for Investigative Reporting. In a 2009 statement to the Los Angeles Times, he called Sangji’s death …"

"… er people.” This story was produced in collaboration with the Center for Investigative Reporting.   …"

BP to pay $13 million for safety violations at Texas refinery

By Alice Su

Oil giant BP has agreed to pay $13 million to settle safety violations at a Texas refinery that blew up in 2005.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… ations stemmed from a 2009 inspection of BP’s Texas City refinery by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. OSHA conducted the inspection to see if BP had corrected safety problems …"

Dust reforms stymied by years of inaction

By Ken Ward Jr.

For more than a quarter-century, government efforts to end black lung have hit brick walls

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… ls was to eliminate MSHA. Mine safety duties would be given instead to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, weakening the greater protections federal law gives to miners. McAteer an …"

OSHA reforms Voluntary Protection Programs

By Alice Su

Labor Department official announces changes to a program that rewards supposedly safer-than-average workplaces

Excerpts from this story referencing "Occupational Safety and Health Administration":

"… ntegrity investigation, a Labor Department official said Thursday that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has reformed a program that rewards workplaces reporting lower-than-averag …"

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