Another Friday the 13th is upon us. This is the third time we will look at a few superstitions to see if there is any benefit to us in regards to safety. Keep in mind I am using superstition in a broad sense. For this blog, a superstition is any idea or belief that may not be entirely rational or scientific but is still used today.
Superstition #1: Holding Your Breath While Passing a Cemetery
Death is always an odd subject that triggers varied reactions in people. For many it is a sad time due to the loss of a loved one or friend. A wake and funeral are held to honor their passing. For others it is a chance to celebrate someone’s life, like the Second Line Parades in New Orleans. For this particular superstition, you are supposed to hold your breath to prevent recently passed or evil spirits from possessing you to live life again.
From a transport point of view, this probably isn’t too great of an idea and should never be done. In fact, there are several published articles in medical journals stating the negative effects of holding your breath for too long. Some of the negative impacts are issues with blood sugar, coordination and even neurological damage. Imagine a truck driver holding his breath as he passes a cemetery, especially a large one that Continue Reading…
With the holiday season many of us are opting out of the busy malls and stores, and simply shopping from the comfort of our own homes. To make this option even more enticing some retailers are even offering free 2-day shipping during the holiday season. While this seems like a win-win situation for all there are some obstacles that have been coming to the surface, and unfortunately we are not just talking about late deliveries. According to the Office of Hazardous Materials Safety, the world’s largest internet retailer, Amazon, has seen a sharp increase in reports of shipments allegedly violating the U.S. Department of Transportation regulations. In 2009, Amazon only had two incident reports, but that number jumped to 32 in 2016 before reaching 42 so far this year. This has caused Amazon to ultimately respond as they soon plan on adding new penalty fees for packages that fail to comply with its safety requirements.
The main issue here is many third-party sellers on Amazon aren’t trained to ship dangerous goods, and simply don’t understand that what they are shipping is indeed hazardous. These third-party sellers often don’t realize what actions need to be taken per the Hazardous Material Regulations that exist to safeguard those who may come in contact with the dangerous goods. For that reason, often times the correct labeling, packaging, and paperwork required to Continue Reading…
It is always a great time when a bunch of safety professionals get together to chat. This happened this past weekend when several of us in the field ended up on someone’s back patio. There were five of us discussing what we see at various facilities. A topic that was recurrent throughout was Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) particularly eye protection. This got me to thinking about how ICC can help get the word out about this. Oddly enough, August is National Eye Exam Month. Let’s put these two together and see what happens.
Back in 1989, Sears Optical created National Eye Exam Month. Many ophthalmologists and optometrists take this time to focus on eye safety. Just for general knowledge, an ophthalmologist is someone who specializes in medical and surgical eye disease, whereas an optometrist is a medical doctor who specialist in eye and vision care. Most of us spend at least 40 hours at work a week with many doing more. A large number of us work at computers, outside or even near chemicals. This puts stress on our eyes. Depending on your age, an eye exam could be useful even if you have no symptoms. The American Optometric Association provides some basic guidelines around when to get an exam.
Airplanes are a great way to reach far away locations. This wouldn’t be possible without Wilbur and Orville Wright’s first powered flight in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina in 1903. To honor this great accomplishment President Franklin Roosevelt declared August 19th as National Aviation Day in the United States. Many use this day to honor other pioneers in aviation and space exploration. It also happens to be Orville Wright’s birthday.
National Aviation Day can be celebrated in any number of ways. Schools dedicate lessons to air travel. Discussions focused on the Wright brothers, Amelia Earhart or Charles Lindbergh and their accomplishments is another. People interested can explore the history of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) which started as the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA). Visits to museums that have dedicated exhibits to aviation and aeronautics are another possibility. Build a model airplane. If you are stuck in an office, make a paper airplane and fly it around the office during your next break or lunch.
We have another Friday the 13th in July. Let’s take a look at a few more superstitions to see how they might impact safety in the workplace and home. As a reminder, a superstition for the purpose of this blog is a belief or notion that while irrational and not scientific seem to persist in society.
A black cat crossing your path brings bad luck
While many ancient civilizations held cats in high esteem like the Egyptians, there are others who feared them. In the Middle Ages people were very afraid of witches and magic. Throughout that craze, the belief was a witch could disguise or transform herself into a cat. The cat could then move more easily around a town causing mischief and mayhem. Cats were often blamed for disease outbreaks such as the plague.
Many sites have certain cleanliness standards. Those standards could include washing hands before and after work or leaving contaminated clothing at the facility. Now those rules don’t speak specifically to black cats, but you get my meaning. There is certainly nothing in any regulations in regards to having animals at home where they are often kept as pets. Certain city rules may limit the number of animals you can have or bans against certain breeds. I won’t go into my personal opinion on that topic. Animals at home just need to be taken care Continue Reading…
Every country has superstitions. Those beliefs or notions that while irrational and not scientific seem to persist in society. They can impact how people respond to situations at home and even at work. In honor of Friday, April 13th, let’s take a look at a few and how they might impact safety.
Superstition #1: Fear of Friday the 13th
People cite multiple reasons for being afraid of this date every year. Some trace it back to the Christian religion and the belief Jesus died on a Friday and there were 13 guests at the Last Supper. Others say this day coincides with the arrest of so many Knights Templar. Those skilled fighters tasked with escorting people to and from the Holy Land. Some still have nightmares from Jason in his hockey mask from the movies around this date.
Regardless of the history, there is nothing in any of the safety or transport regulations that says this date should be avoided. If you need a day off, follow your company policy and do it by the book. For those trivia buffs out there, the fear of the number 13 and/or this date is known as paraskevidekatriaphobia and friggatriskaidekaphobia. One is of Greek derivation the other is Norse.
Superstition #2: Do Not Walk Under Ladders
This one stems from either the Christian religion and the idea of the Holy Trinity or ancient Egyptian and the shape of Continue Reading…
Occasionally our Regulatory Helpline is asked a question by a customer that stretches our knowledge of the regulations. The most recent one was a call regarding shipping spaceship batteries. Apparently, they were visiting another planet in their system and got stuck due to a dilithium crystal ion battery that would no longer hold a charge. Their home planet of Nibiru wants to send some replacement spaceship batteries and asked if there were any regulations with which they should comply and any areas with which they needed to be concerned.
To show you how great our helpline is, let’s review the process we used to get them the answer they needed.
Step 1: Is the planetary nation a current customer of ICC?
It turns out they actually are a current customer.
This means they have ready access to our helpline anytime they should need it.
Step 2: By which mode of transport will these be transported?
To start, the Area 51 CFR Ground regulations for the home planet must be reviewed. This is necessary as the spaceship batteries would be transported by hovercraft from the home planet’s office to the intergalactic air and space launch facility.