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Posts Tagged ‘compliance’

Can Apps Simplify Regulatory Compliance?

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2011

Can Apps Simplify Regulatory Compliance?The announcement of a couple of new apps connected to the gases and welding industry caught my eye over the last week. First, OSHA launched a phone app that allows workers to measure the heat index of their work environment. Something like this might be more useful for welders than welding distributors, but it shows that regulatory agencies are paying attention to mobile technology.

Perhaps an Hours of Service compliance app could prove useful to distributor drivers in navigating complicated rules and exemptions, or maybe a medical gas compliance guide can make sure everything is in order. There are some definite possibilities that could make compliance easier and simpler.

Also, researchers at Purdue University are developing an app that allows users to interpret a hazmat placard by taking a picture. While geared at emergency responders, this sort of app could offer some potential for distributors who deal with hazardous materials to help promote a safe environment. “These new capabilities include the use of image analysis methods to automatically determine the type of hazardous materials present based on an image taken of the sign or placard, as well as the appropriate response protocol and evacuation perimeters,” says David S. Ebert, Silicon Valley Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering.

Oddly enough, the hazmat app uses the same technology as an app that interprets gang graffiti. So if you are unfortunate to experience vandalism to your building, cylinders or trucks, the app can help you steer clear of danger.

What kind of app would you like to see to help with compliance?

Are You Close To A Serious Disaster?

Thursday, September 2nd, 2010

The big news this week is the unfortunate series of explosions at GAWDA member Scully Welding Supply in Collingdale, PA. A small fire broke out in the yard, which triggered a series of explosions for more than 20 minutes. From the videos I’ve seen, it was a scary sight.

It’s almost hard to believe the fact that it could have been much, much worse. Luckily, fire crews kept two larger propane tanks in check, one a18,000-gallon tank at 20 percent capacity and another a 30,000-gallon tank at 30 percent capacity. And thankfully, from what I’ve heard, those involved in the accident are doing OK. The latest news is that crews were called back to the scene a day later to extinguish hot spot fires among the rubble. Needless to say, it’s a bad situation, and we’re all hoping for the best.

For all gases and welding distributors, I’m sure it is a scary thought to think this can happen to your business. Whether or not you sell propane, there are plenty of potentially hazardous products in the gases and welding industry. Are you doing everything possible to prevent a disaster? We pray that it never happens, but does your company have a disaster plan if an accident occurs?

You can’t be everywhere at once, but keeping tabs on safety is a critical, even burdensome task. Does your company have a full-time safety and compliance officer? If it’s only a part-time responsibility, does your compliance officer have enough time to do their job well? See what others in the industry are doing in Welding & Gases Today.

 Let’s hope we can learn from this disaster and hopefully make sure it never happens again.