Benjamin Franklin Knew the Value of Risk Management

ben_franklinThe history of risk management can be traced back to the 1600’s. The modern day version is a five step process:

  1. Identify Risk
  2. Analyze Risk
  3. Control Risk
  4. Finance Risk
  5. Measure Results

Unfortunately business often get’s poor advice and finance their risk with insurance while skipping the first 3 steps. This is good for insurance companies but leads to higher cost for the business.

Benjamin Franklin said “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

The ounce of prevention he was talking about is the first 3 steps of risk management. The pound of cure is insurance.

To find out more about the Ottawa Kent Risk Management 365 Process go to:

Losing Weight Without Thinking

Mindless-EatingStudies by Dr Brian Wansink, PhD., showed that people lost up to two pounds a month after making several simple changes in their environment, including:

  • eating off salad plates instead of large dinner plates.
  • keeping unhealthy foods out of immediate line of sight and moving healthier foods to eye-level in the cupboard and refrigerator.
  • eating in the kitchen or dining room, not in front of the television.

“These simple strategies are far more likely to succeed than willpower alone. It’s easier to change your environment than to change your mind” Wansink said.

via Mindless Eating: Losing Weight Without Thinking.

OSHA’s Bloodborne Pathogens Standard

bloodborne-pathogen-trainingOSHA’s bloodborne pathogens standard, 29 CFR 1910.1030 applies to all persons who may reasonably anticipate contact with blood or other potentially infectious materials in the course of their employment. This includes contact with skin, eyes, mucous membranes or contact from piercing the skin. The focus of the regulation is the creation of a written exposure control plan that describes how the employer will protect employees from exposure.

via OSHA’s Bloodborne Pathogens Standard, 29 CFR 1910.1030 – Quick Tips #105 – Grainger Industrial Supply.

Tornado Preparedness and Response


Preparedness involves a continuous process of planning, equipping, training and exercising. Planning for tornadoes requires identifying a place to take shelter, being familiar with and monitoring your community’s warning system, and establishing procedures to account for individuals in the building. Employers may need to obtain additional equipment and/or resources (e.g. Emergency Supply Kits) identified in the plan. In addition, workers need to be trained and plans need to be practiced to ensure that personnel are familiar with what to do in the event of a tornado.


Identifying Shelter Locations

  • An underground area, such as a basement or storm cellar, provides the best protection from a tornado. If an underground shelter is unavailable, consider the following:
  • Seek a small interior room or hallway on the lowest floor possible
  • Stay away from doors, windows, and outside walls
  • Stay in the center of the room, and avoid corners because they attract debris
  • Rooms constructed with reinforced concrete, brick or block with no windows and a heavy concrete floor or roof system overhead
  • Avoid auditoriums, cafeterias and gymnasiums that have flat, wide-span roofs.
  • Personnel should also be aware of what to do if caught outdoors when a tornado is threatening. Seek shelter in a basement or a sturdy building. If one is not within walking distance, try to drive in a vehicle, using a seat belt, to the nearest shelter. If flying debris is encountered while in a vehicle, there are two options: 1) staying in the vehicle with the seat belt on, keeping your head below the windows and covering it with your hands or a blanket, 2) if there is an area which is noticeable lower than the roadway, lie in that area and cover your head with your hands.

Accountability procedures

The following steps are recommended to help ensure the safety of personnel if a tornado occurs:

  • Warning Systems
  • Tornado Watch – Tornadoes are likely to occur in the watch area. Be ready to act quickly and take shelter, and check supply kits. Monitor radio and television stations for more information.
  • Tornado Warning – Imminent threat – A tornado has been sighted in the area or has been indicated by radar. Take shelter immediately.
  • Your local emergency management office can provide information about your community’s tornado warning system.
  • Develop a system for knowing who is in the building in the event of an emergency
  • Establish an alarm system to warn workers
  • Test systems frequently
  • Develop plans to communicate warnings to personnel with disabilities or who do not speak English
  • Account for workers, visitors, and customers as they arrive in the shelter
  • Use a prepared roster or checklist
  • Take a head count
  • Assign specific duties to workers in advance; create checklists for each specific responsibility. Designate and train workers alternates in case the assigned person is not there or is injured

via Tornado Preparedness and Response – Preparedness.

Gambling Addiction and Problem Gambling: Warning Signs

1-1Do I have a gambling problem?

You may have a gambling problem if you:

  • Feel the need to be secretive about your gambling. You might gamble in secret or lie about how much you gamble, feeling others won’t understand or that you will surprise them with a big win.
  • Have trouble controlling your gambling. Once you start gambling, can you walk away? Or are you compelled to gamble until you’ve spent your last dollar, upping your bets in a bid to win lost money back?
  • Gamble even when you don’t have the money. A red flag is when you are getting more and more desperate to recoup your losses. You may gamble until you’ve spent your last dollar, and then move on to money you don’t have- money to pay bills, credit cards, or things for your children. You may feel pushed to borrow, sell, or even steal things for gambling money. It’s a vicious cycle. You may sincerely believe that gambling more money is the only way to win lost money back. But it only puts you further and further in the hole.
  • Family and friends are worried about you. Denial keeps problem gambling going. If friends and family are worried, listen to them carefully. Take a hard look at how gambling is affecting your life. It’s not a sign of weakness to ask for help. Many older gamblers are reluctant to reach out to their adult children if they’ve gambled away their inheritance. But it’s never too late to make changes for the better.

via Gambling Addiction and Problem Gambling: Warning Signs and How to Get Help.

No Lockout/Tagout Can Be Fatal


Worker killed at Michigan molding plant 

A worker was crushed to death March 5, 2014 in an industrial accident at a plastics molding plant in Shelby Township, Mich.

The victim was attempting to clear an obstruction from a press machine at about 6 a.m. when he was fatally injured, according to a news release from the Shelby Township Police Department.

“The machine cycled to stamp a part and crushed the victim,” the release says.

The victim died at the scene before police and fire personnel arrived.

via Worker killed at Michigan molding plant – News – Plastics News.

“While this is still under investigation by MIOSHA it’s obvious this machine was being worked on with out following Lockout-tagout procedures. Unfortunately this time it was fatal.”

Tips to Survive Spring Break

Spring_Break_logoIf you are a college student, you are probably counting down the days until spring break. Here are 12 spring break tips to keep you safe while you’re having fun away from school.

1. Don’t be stupid in the ocean.

If you are going to be swimming in the ocean, do you even know what rip currents and rip tides are? These strong currents can quickly carry you out to sea if you aren’t careful and how you swim out of these currents is counterintuitive. Talk to a lifeguard about swimming conditions before getting in the water.

2. Protect your location on social media sites.

Sharing too much information on your location on Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare may endanger your safety, warns the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network. Adjust your privacy settings and use your best judgment when checking in on Facebook and Foursquare. Be cautious about revealing personal information and location through status updates or tweets with Twitter trends like #SpringBreak and #SB2012./p>

3. Consider travel insurance.

Unfortunately, most student health policies don’t cover individuals once they leave U.S. soil. Stephanie Kaplan, Her Campus co-founder, recommends that students obtain a good travel insurance policy that covers illness, injury and emergency evacuation coverage.

4. Create a code word.

Create a secret signal or code word to let your friends know when you are uncomfortable and need them to intervene. When you are with friends, arrive together and leave together. Establish a place to meet in advance if you get separated.

5. Don’t drink in a hot tub.

Forget about all those MTV videos that makes drinking look essential for a hot-tub experience. Alcohol can dilate blood vessels and lower blood pressure to dangerous levels. The effects of drinking are felt faster and stronger if you’re sitting in a hot tub.

6. Before traveling get up-to-date on your vaccines.

That advice comes from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Click on the CDC’s vaccine quiz to find out if you need to be vaccinated.

7. Take a copy of your passport.

There is no worse way to end a vacation than to discover that your passport has been stolen or lost.

8. Practice safe drinking.

Never leave your drink unattended. If you lose sight of it, order a new one. Don’t accept drinks from people you don’t know or trust.

9. Tan safely.

To prepare for a beach destination, opt for spray tanning or self-tanning instead of a tanning bed. The risk of skin cancer is too great to spend time at a tanning salon.

10. Don’t stay on the first floor.

Avoid first-floor hotel rooms because they are bigger targets for thieves. If you bring your laptop, keep it in a hotel safe.

11. Carry phone numbers and cash.

On spring break, carry emergency cash and the phone numbers of cab companies. Keep in your wallet the address of the hotel or rental property that you are staying at.

12. Consider an alternative spring break.

Many schools and religious organizations offer alternative spring break options, including networking retreats and community service trips. Choosing one of these alternatives should make your parents happy.

via 12 tips to survive spring break – CBS News.

Safe Patient Handling

Safe-Patient-HandlingRates of musculoskeletal injuries from overexertion in healthcare occupations are among the highest of all U.S. industries. Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) show that in 2011, the rate of overexertion injuries averaged across all industries was 38 per 10,000 full time workers. By comparison, the overexertion injury rate for hospital workers was twice the average (76 per 10,000), the rate for nursing home workers was over three times the average (132 per 10,000), and the rate for ambulance workers was over six times the average (238 per 10,000). The single greatest risk factor for overexertion injuries in healthcare workers is the manual lifting, moving and repositioning of patients, residents or clients, i.e., manual patient handling.

via CDC – Safe Patient Handling – NIOSH Workplace Safety and Health Topic.

Sleep and Sleep Disorders

Sleeping-ManWhile we often consider sleep to be a “passive” activity, sufficient sleep is increasingly being recognized as an essential aspect of health promotion and chronic disease prevention in the public health community.

Insufficient sleep is associated with a number of chronic diseases and conditions—such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity, and depression—which threaten our nation’s health. Notably, insufficient sleep is associated with the onset of these diseases and also poses important implications for their management and outcome. Moreover, insufficient sleep is responsible for motor vehicle and machinery-related crashes, causing substantial injury and disability each year. In short, drowsy driving can be as dangerous—and preventable—as driving while intoxicated.

More than one-quarter of the U.S. population report occasionally not getting enough sleep, while nearly 10% experience chronic insomnia. However, new methods for assessing and treating sleep disorders bring hope to the millions suffering from insufficient sleep. Fundamental to the success of all of these efforts is the recognition that sufficient sleep is not a luxury—it is a necessity—and should be thought of as a “vital sign” of good health.

via CDC – Sleep Home Page – Sleep and Sleep Disorders.