FMA Communications Inc.

Vicki Bell

Web Content Manager
FMA Communications Inc.
833 Featherstone Road
Rockford, IL 61107

Welding fume health hazards

March 11, 2004

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According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), more than 400,000 U.S. men and women are employed in welding and related occupations. Some studies suggest that these workers are at risk of serious respiratory, neurological, and reproductive effects. More and better data is needed to assess the risks.

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Offshore outsourcing—an economic and political issue

March 11, 2004

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Listening to the current economic rhetoric, much of which contains formulaic doublespeak and political posturing, has led me to a couple of clichd observations. In terms of talk—which is not quite as cheap in an election year, when the stakes are higher—you ain't seen nothing yet. Political candidates and pundits will state, interpret, attack, defend, and regurgitate past actions and campaign promises ad nauseam from now until the November election.

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Employee training

February 12, 2004

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During the economic downturn, many companies cut employee training to help control expenses. At the same time, technical and vocational programs were and continue to be cut for a variety of reasons, including providers' budget concerns and low enrollment.

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Emergency preparedness: A critical safety program component

February 12, 2004

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You're at work and a fire alarm or other emergency warning device sounds. Do you know what to do? Where to go and the appropriate route to get there?

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Occupational injury and illness statistics

January 29, 2004

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In December 2003 the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released its 2002 occupational injuries and illnesses data. A total of 4.7 million nonfatal injuries and illnesses were reported in private-industry workplaces during 2002, resulting in a rate of 5.3 cases per 100 equivalent full-time workers. Among goods-producing categories, incidence rates ranged from 4.0 cases per 100 workers in mining to 7.2 cases per 100 workers in manufacturing. These numbers are overall averages of subsets in each major category.

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Resolve to have a healthy, injury-free 2004

January 13, 2004

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The beginning of a new year is a good time to think about what's important in life and what changes you can make to benefit yourself and those around you. Safety practices and good health should be on everyone's priority lists. Adopting certain behaviors will help optimize your health, ensure your safety in the workplace and elsewhere, and make your corner of the world better for everyone.

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Made in the U.S.A.

January 13, 2004

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For many years I lived in Belvidere, Ill., home of what was then known simply as the Chrysler plant. The local United Auto Workers union prominently displayed a sign in the parking lot that said, "Foreign cars will be towed." Now that the plant, which builds the Dodge Neon®, bears the name DaimlerChrysler, I'm wondering—is the sign still there? Probably not.

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Family business going strong after 100 years

December 11, 2003

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The average lifespan of a family-owned business is 24 years, and 60 percent of family-owned businesses do not have a clear succession plan. Tell that to the Peddinghaus Corporation and you might be in for a big "Oh really?" In business for 100 years and with a Peddinghaus still at the helm, the family-owned manufacturer of steel construction industry equipment clearly is a statistical exception.

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Is your company a breeding ground for workplace violence?

November 6, 2003

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Workplace violence—many of us think about it only when national or local media reports an incident. Most of us probably think it happens infrequently and never could happen where we work. And it's likely that workplace violence victims thought the same thing, before it happened to them.

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Shedding light on negativity—Part 2

November 6, 2003

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Read Part I.Negative thoughts, feelings, opinions, and comments are normal. Each of us thinks and expresses negative thoughts every day. Often the negatives illuminate problems that need to be addressed. When handled properly, they can lead to positive changes. But when negativity becomes chronic,...

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Shedding light on negativity—Part 1

October 9, 2003

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Read Part II. Are you a negaholic—someone who almost always sees the glass as half or totally empty? Do you live or work with one? If you answered, "No" to both of these questions, I'd like to know what planet you live on.These days—which are rife with economic uncertainty,...

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The Gates: remembering 9-11

September 10, 2003

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Two years after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, most people's lives have returned to some degree of normalcy, but what happened on that day will never be forgotten. For one metal sculptor, remembering has become a crusade to create from steel salvaged from the World Trade Center a lasting memorial of the tragic event and the resilience of the human spirit.

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Exposure to metalworking fluids

September 10, 2003

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In 1993, the International Union, United Automobile, Aerospace & Agricultural Implement Workers of America (UAW) petitioned the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to take emergency regulatory action to protect workers from the risks of occupational cancers and respiratory illnesses due to exposure to metalworking fluids (MWFs). Bureaucratic wheels turn slowly.

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Any good news in manufacturing?

August 14, 2003

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This article was inspired by a reader's reaction to Part IIof David Goodreau's two-part series about the state of manufacturing, The Perfect Economic Storm and the 100-year Flood in Manufacturing. The reader asked, "Can you find ANY good news out there for the industry?" While you may have to look...

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Workplace stress—Part 2

August 14, 2003

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If you've visited a doctor recently and were told that stress is the cause of or a contributing factor to what ails you, you're not alone. Although you can't expect to eliminate all of the stress in your life, you can learn to manage it and reduce its negative effects.

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