Friday, January 30, 2015

Awareness and Prevention of Trips, Slips and Falls

Slips, trips and falls are among the most common workplace injuries according to the US department of Labor. 


A PowerPoint presentation Slips, Trips and Falls Identification and Prevention from OSHA explains the economic and personal costs of slips, trips and falls. It also makes the point that many of these types of injuries are preventable and it outlines the causes of various accidents. Prevention and awareness of the environmental and human factors that contribute to these types of incidents can reduce injury and lost productivity.

ASTM 2966-13 Standard Guide for Snow and Ice Control for Walkway Surfaces details some of the measures to reduce the hazards of snow and ice. These include barricading, plowing and treating walks, preventing obstructed drains, monitoring conditions, and providing mats to remove water and snow from shoes. The ASTM standard also recommends developing written plans and diagrams to indicate how clean up, deicing and ice prevention will be prioritized and accomplished.

ASTM F1637 Standard Practice for Safe Walking Surfaces covers design and construction guidelines and minimum maintenance criteria for new and existing buildings and structures. This practice is intended to provide reasonably safe walking surfaces for pedestrians wearing ordinary footwear. 

Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics for the number of non-fatal falls, slips and trips from 2011-2013 is shown below. The CDC reports "Fall injuries constitute a considerable financial burden: workers’ compensation and medical costs associated with occupational fall incidents have been estimated at approximately $70 billion annually in the United Sates [NSC 2002]."

Area: All U.S.
Ownership: Private industry
Data Type: Injury and illness Cases
Category: All industry
Years: 2011 to 2013
Year Annual
2011  229,630.00
2012  223,700.00
2013  229,190.00

Friday, January 23, 2015

ANSI/ISEA Z308.1-2014 Standard for Workplace First Aid Kits

Did you know ANSI/ISEA Z308.1-2014 is a new standard for workplace first aid kits? You can stay up to date on new standards by subscribing to RSS feeds on the ANSI webstore. The RSS feed for ISEA lists the latest standards.

ANSI/ISEA Z358.1-2014 is the latest American National Standard for Emergency Eyewash and Shower Equipment.

Find out more about ISEA standards on the ANSI webstore. ISEA, the International Safety Equipment Association, is a nonprofit organization that develops and publishes standards regarding the protection of workers from hazards and the mitigation of the effects of accidental exposure. ISEA is an ANSI accredited standards developing organization.

ISEA standards are widely used in construction safety, such as high visibility safety apparel, protective headwear, emergency eyewash and shower equipment, respiratory protective devices, personal eye and face protection devices and more. ISEA standards are equally applicable in industrial settings, hospitals, laboratories, and factories. You can find the full selection of ISEA standards and many other workplace safety standards on the ANSI webstore.

Construction workers wearing PPE equipment

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Searching for Standards - Comparing Search Tools

What is the best way to search for standards?

Standards generally have highly structured meta data, consisting of the title, abstract and the document number plus additional fields.

The search technology on is very different from Google and Bing. Autocomplete on Google and the both begin recommending search terms when you begin typing a search query. Google recommendations are based on the popularity and the frequency of searches that ran before and may also be related to your past interests. Searching for "windows" on Google you might see recommendations or results for either the Microsoft operating system or Andersen replacement windows depending on your recent search history.

Autocomplete on is based on an alphabetic match to document numbers in the store catalog and it has nothing to do with past history or popularity. Document number searches on really only query the document number field in the catalog database. This eliminates false positive matches in the case where other parts of related documents may mention the document number. But both the autocomplete function and the actual search are quite unforgiving if the number is not exactly formatted properly. By contrast, if you misspell, you may notice on Google and Bing, the phrases "did you mean" or "showing results for". On Google, if you are looking for a standard, you may find related services or products intermingled with the actual standard you are looking for. That can be very helpful unless your present intent is simply to find the standard you need.

So keep in mind, that the is a vertical search engine specifically for standards and it relies on dashes, slashes and colons being entered exactly as they are used in the document. As an experiment, you might try to see how Google and Bing treat the query ISA-TR84.00.02-2002 with and without the dash. Google ignores the dash and presents the same results in both instances. Bing treats both queries differently and returns different search results in each case. On the ANSI webstore, entirely different results are returned depending on whether the dash is included or not. Slashes, dashes and colons are interpreted as literal characters on  So searching for ANSI-ISA produces no results but searching for ANSI/ISA returns several documents.

As a final example: if you were to search the webstore for ANSI/ISA 103.00.08, as you began typing, you'd see various autocomplete suggestions. But if you left out the slash and typed ANSI ISA 103, the search would fail as shown in the two screenshots below. A secondary search box is presented, when the webstore returns no results. That search box uses a different search algorithm that isn't sensitive to the dashes, slashes and other special characters. It broadens the search and may produce a wide variety of results. It often will return what you were looking for or at least can then show you the proper structure of the document number you are looking for. Another suggestion might be to search for the core designation, such as 103.00.08 as shown in the third screenshot below.

Friday, January 16, 2015

We Are Standards People

We are standards people, so it's only natural that we see standards everywhere. This short movie begins with everyday images of cars and work at a construction site. It goes on to show where standards are used in aircraft, automotive, construction, safety and much more. (Keep the sound on.)


Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Accessibility Guidelines and the Americans with Disabilities Act

Accessiblility guidelines on the ANSI webstore cover ergonomics in office equipment for the elderly and disabled; for vehicles and information technology. Accessible building standards and standards for Americans with Disabilities Act are also part of the collection of standards available for architects and builders.

The Department of Justice’s revised regulations for Titles II and III of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) were published in the Federal Register on September 15, 2010. These regulations adopted revised, enforceable accessibility standards called the 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design, "2010 Standards." On March 15, 2012, compliance with the 2010 Standards was required for new construction and alterations under Titles II and III. March 15, 2012, is also the compliance date for using the 2010 Standards for program accessibility and barrier removal.Get more information on the Americans with Disabilities Act from

Love Manufacturing?

Packaging machinery runs on standards from conveyors to roller bearings, lubricants, belts, valves, design, maintenance and sanitation. ANSI has the manufacturing and production standards that make machinery work. Love manufacturing? We do too. Hungry for more? The video below shows a bread packaging line in operation.

Have You Tried Mobile

Have you tried mobile