Livingston Reporting

Report Suggests Need for Improved Electrical Shock Safety Training

According to a safety report by Littelfuse, electrical workers who were trained on safety practices weren’t necessarily aware of how to avoid injury or death from electrical shock. The Chicago-based circuit protection manufacturer surveyed 575 electrical workers across an assortment of industries. Technicians, design and project engineers, maintenance electricians, electrical contractors, and safety, plant, and purchasing managers participated in the survey.

Over 90 percent of surveyed employees were provided with safety equipment training if they work with or near equipment voltage up to 500 volts (V.) Most of the workers (62 percent) who said they believe it is safe to work with 500V experienced electrical shock by more than 220V while working. 

“If a worker cannot distinguish a safe working voltage from a hazardous condition, then their safety training failed. It is also probable that any pertinent safety practices the worker has retained are ineffective when they are unable to read a hazardous situation,” Littelfuse wrote.

Many electrical workers who went through electrical safety training use Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), such as gloves, to work on live equipment. The Littelfuse report stated, “If a worker believes they do not need to de-energize equipment if they wear PPE, then their safety training has failed.” Moreover, many facilities are required to send their electrical gloves to be tested by a laboratory; many do not, according to surveyed employees.

Facilities should be providing more than PPE to employees in order to prevent electrical shock. According to the Littelfuse report, “PPE is the least-effective preventative measure and responsible for many injuries and fatalities due to its human-based practices. GFCI protection, which is a much more effective preventative measure as it nearly eliminates the hazard, saves lives because it does not require human involvement for it to work. Its out-of-sight-out-of-mind practice requires zero energy from the workers to guarantee their safety.” Yet the National Electric Code does not require GFCI protection for circumstances as it does PPE.

For your electrical equipment and service needs, contact J&P Electrical. We can answer questions about safety and offer products to ensure your employees are protected. For further reading, check out the report by Littelfuse.

J&P Electrical is a full-service electrical equipment company. At J&P, we supply contractors, end-users, and supply houses with new surplus, quality reconditioned, and obsolete electrical equipment. We also purchase a wide range of electrical equipment, such as bus plugs, ducts, panel switches, substations, and transformers. Call us at 877-844-5514 or visit us at https://www.jpelectricalcompany.com.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

Ann Arbor’s Gelman Dioxane Plume to be Remediated in Landmark Agreement

Local officials in Ann Arbor announced a proposed settlement after years of fighting in court for better cleanup of the Gelman Dioxane Plume. A more aggressive plan includes thorough monitoring of the plume’s expansion through the city’s groundwater and treating pollution at the source. Gelman Sciences is to blame for the polluted water.

Washtenaw County Board Chairman Jason Morgan said, “This is a monumental moment in our 40-plus-year effort to clean up the Gelman dioxane plume. We finally have a new proposed consent judgment and have made the documents public. This is a big deal.”

Polluter Gelman Sciences would be required to install new groundwater extraction wells to remove dioxane pollution from the environment, as well as more monitoring wells to further investigate the migration of the toxic chemical, with new trigger levels for taking action. They would also be required to install two new remediation techniques to increase removal of dioxane in the ground at the source off of Wagner Road in Ann Arbor.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) classifies dioxane as a carcinogen by all routes of exposure. It can cause kidney, liver, and respiratory system damage. Just a few Parts Per Billion (ppb) in drinking water with long-term exposure poses a one-in-100,000 cancer risk, according to the EPA.

The proposed settlement formalizes the state’s newer standard of 7.2 ppb down from 85 ppb level of dioxane in drinking water.

The dioxane plume was first discovered in the 1980s, originating from Gelman’s filter manufacturing complex, and it has plagued the groundwater ever since. Gelman Sciences has done little to remedy the situation beyond pump-and-treat remediation. The plume has spread for miles, including east into Ann Arbor city limits, causing fears it could poison the city’s primary drinking water supply, Barton Pond, in addition to many wells.

For further reading, the Gelman Proposed Settlement Documents are on the city of Ann Arbor’s website. To protect yourself and your family from dangerous chemicals found in drinking water, contact the experts at Reynolds Water Conditioning today.

Reynolds Water Conditioning was established in 1931 and is Michigan’s oldest water conditioning treatment company. Still owned and operated by the Reynolds family, we take pride in providing the highest quality products at a cost-effective price. If your tap water lacks the quality you deserve, contact us today at www.reynoldswater.com or call 800-572-9575.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

Properly Winterize a Pool in Six Steps

With the crisp fall breeze upon us, winter will be here before we know it. Typically, pools are closed in the late summer or early fall. The process, called winterizing, helps protect pool’s structure from costly damage related to freezing water. It’s also a great way to ensure your pool is clean and ready for next year’s season.

Read the step-by-step winterizing process below:

  1. Balance water. Ensuring your pool water chemistry is correct can circumvent laborious maintenance issues when you re-open in the spring or summer. Pool testing kits are essential for this step. Levels such as pH, alkalinity, calcium hardness, and more are crucial to assess. Incorrect chemical imbalances can lead to corrosion, effect comfortability, and promote algae growth. Winterizing chemicals can help keep your pool water balanced.
  • Add a shock treatment. Chlorine is critical to pool water quality by preventing algae, breaking down bacteria, and keeping the water clean and fresh. Shocking pool water consists of adding a large amount of chlorine (10 to 12 PPM), then waiting a day or two for the PPM to be a normal level (1.5 to 3.5 PPM.) For best results, shock your pool a few days before you plan on shutting it down.
  • Remove/clean tools and accessories. Remove all skimmer baskets, heaters, slides, wall fittings, vacuums, pool cleaners, ladders, and handrails. Clean well, allow to dry thoroughly, and store in a secure, dry place. After removing the equipment, collect debris from the pool using a net.
  • Lower the water level. Use the filter pump or submersible pump to lower the water level in the pool. It needs to be roughly four to six inches below the plumbing line, which is normally the water return line. Ensure the water is below the skimmer; the above-ground skimmer can be removed.
  • Drain your pool equipment. Your pool pump, filter, heater, and chlorinator have drain plugs. Drain manually or blow water out with a Shop Vac or something similar. Wash your filter and store during the winter. If you have a chemical feeder, drain and empty it.
  • Add a winter cover. Solid pool covers keep out debris, block the sun, and discourage algae growth. Air pillows fit under the cover and help to relieve pressure and protect the pool’s walls as the water freezes. Air pillows also minimize the number of leaves, debris, and water that collects in the center of your pool cover.

Have more questions about winterizing a pool? Look no further; contact the experts at Pound Pool Plastering who can assist with winterizing and renovations.

Pound Pool Plastering offers free estimates and complete pool renovations. Dale Pound, owner, personally oversees each pool project to ensure the highest quality is delivered. We offer Diamond Brite, Sunstone, Hydrazzo, Marcite, Pebble finishes, Bead Crete, tile choices, coping stones, etc. We are pool renovation experts – contact us today at 248-476-4544 or poundpool@sbcglobal.net.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

How to Cope with Mask-Associated Dry Eye (MADE)

With the COVID-19 pandemic among us, expert and government recommendations have prompted mandates for face mask use in addition to social distancing. The use of face masks helps thwart coronavirus transmission. As the world emerges from shutdowns and the season changes from summer to winter, the imposed use of face masks for extended periods will increase.

To combat the spread of COVID-19, these preventative measures are essential. However, a new phenomenon is emerging: increasing reports of dry, uncomfortable eyes. Is there a science behind this trend, who is at risk, and what are the solutions?

Mask-Associated Dry Eye (MADE) was first described in June by an ophthalmologist who noticed an increase of these patients. A study published in July examined the issue further. Existing dry eye disease patients report worsening symptoms. Previously asymptomatic people are now complaining of dry, uncomfortable eyes, accompanied by inconsistent vision. These symptoms seem to occur most when reading or using digital devices for an extended amount of time.

Face masks drastically reduce the outward spread of air from the mouth and nose; however, exhaled breath still needs to diffuse. Masks that fit loosely against the nose cause the airflow to extend upward, forcing a stream of air over the surface of the eye. Those who wear glasses are familiar with this effect, as lens-fogging often occurs when a mask is worn. This repeated cycle can lead to dry eyes when masks are worn for extended periods. People who insert contact lenses daily are especially susceptible to dry eye since the ocular surface is already compromised by the lens.

There are a few ways to alleviate MADE. First, ensure your face mask fits appropriately, especially when wearing glasses. For prolonged use, consider applying athletes’ tape along the top edge and nose area. Consult with your eye care professional and utilize lubricating eye drops. When possible, limit time in air-conditioned, windy, or especially dry environments. Lastly, take regular breaks from digital devices.

To read further, check out the original article or read this manual for tips on how to wear a face mask if you suffer from dry eyes. For a more permanent MADE solution, contact the Rohr Eye & Laser Center to schedule an appointment for laser vision correction today.

Rohr Eye & Laser Center offers the most advanced technology available to provide personalized and extraordinary care to our patients. Whether your goal is to maintain or improve your natural vision, we are here to help you. Call us at 877-579-0202 or visit https://www.michiganlasik.com/ to schedule an appointment today.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

Benefits of Becoming a Resource for Clients

The key to unlocking a lifelong client can be found when you become an unwavering resource. Clients typically look for value; when you offer affordable expertise combined with quality products, they will be hard-pressed to seek services elsewhere. A strong, reliable business resource adds value to the client’s portfolio while continuing to provide top-tier products and services.

Some of the benefits of becoming a business resource or information hub for clients include:

  1. Authority: you become your client’s go-to for questions in the decision-making process. It is imperative to become a hub for your client when they have a decision to make. Financial planners, for example, consult hundreds of clients who share their entire monetary portfolios. Other life decisions are put into the hands of different business genres such as home, auto, and health insurance, mortgages, and attorneys for legal counsel. If you position yourself as a steadfast resource, you are further embedded as a business they trust.
  2. Retention: as a business hub, you are able to assist your clients with other stressors in their lives, which means they are far less likely to turn to your competition. They will value you for whatever primary product or service you are providing. Moreover, they will most likely value your insight and refer to you for other ideas. Your clients will appreciate a steadfast resource, making them more loyal to you.
  3. Referrals: the greater the number of loyal clients who trust your business, the higher your referral rate will skyrocket. Clients who are satisfied with your services and see your overall value will more-than-likely refer you to family, friends, and other businesses.

Becoming an authority, securing retention, and gaining referrals are all quite powerful benefits of acting as a valuable resource for your clients. Implementing these strategies will yield harmonious results.

Want to become a valuable resource for your Medicare clients? Contact the experts at Omega Business Strategies today to learn more about offering Medicare benefits to your company.

Omega Benefit Strategies provides senior credit union members and other groups an educational resource for Medicare. Our turnkey marketing package seamlessly integrates with existing market strategies. We can help businesses increase new member acquisitions, bolster retention, cross-sell opportunities via our “scorecard” system, and even earn an ancillary revenue stream. Accommodating any size membership, we maintain exemplary member service and offer top-notch products. Contact us today by going to www.omegabenefitstrategies.com or call 888-404-5049.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

Difference Between Medicare and Medicaid

Sharing the same prefix makes Medicare and Medicaid easily interchangeable, but in reality, they are entirely different. To add to the confusion, both are structured by the government to assist people with healthcare costs. Beyond sharing prefixes and the healthcare realm, the two programs have nothing else in common.

Medicare: an insurance program paid from trust funds which those covered have paid into.

  • For seniors 65+ or those with a qualifying disability
  • Federal government sets standard benefits and costs
  • Private plans might provide additional (varying) coverage and costs
  • Parts A and B provided by the government; Parts C and D provided by insurance companies

Medicaid: an insurance assistance program serving low-income people.

  • For individuals, families, and children with limited income and resources
  • State sets Medicaid programs based on federal guidelines
  • Different programs exist for specific populations
  • Both mandatory and optional benefits available

Both Medicare and Medicaid include premiums, deductibles, copays, and insurance costs. Specific Medicaid groups are exempt from out-of-pocket expenses, and there are four different Medicare savings programs available. Some people can have both Medicare and Medicaid; these people are called “dual eligible.”

To enroll for Medicare, enroll with either Social Security directly (Parts A and B) or a private insurance company (Parts C and D) to choose the coverage you need. To enroll for Medicaid in Michigan, visit their website.

Both Medicare and Medicaid are two very different healthcare programs. It is imperative to understand the differences. If you are dual-eligible, learn how they can work together for your benefit.

For more information about the differences between Medicare and Medicaid, visit the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services website. To enroll in Medicare Parts C and D, contact Senior Health Medicare today.

Senior Health Medicare is a superior resource for Medicare guidance, information, and ongoing client support. Selecting a plan is not a flippant decision. It requires annual revisiting and re-evaluating in order for the client to stay in the most cost-effective coverage. Senior Health Medicare is here to serve as your resource through all the years to come. Contact us today at 888-404-5049 or visit us on the web at www.seniorhealthmedicare.com.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

Combined Study Results Indicate Possibilities for Lung Cancer Screening in New Zealand

Lung cancer screening might be one step closer to fruition in New Zealand thanks to newly discovered results by the University of Otago, published by medical journal BMJ Open. The indigenous Māori people of New Zealand are particularly susceptible to lung cancer, as their mortality rates are between three and four times higher than other ethnic groups. Around 450 Māori are diagnosed with lung cancer, and approximately 300 die from it yearly. If caught in the early stages, health outcomes for the Māori and other ethnic groups will undoubtedly improve.

To assess whether low-dose computerized tomography (LDCT) might be a cost-effective way to screen for lung cancer, Waitematā and Auckland DHBs collaborated with University of Otago researchers. Led by Associate Professor Sue Crengle (Kāi Tahu, Kāti Mamoe, Waitaha) from the University of Otago, the researchers used scientific modeling to estimate the benefits and costs of LDCT screening when it comes to a high-risk population. LDCT uses a small amount of radiation to produce an extremely clear three-dimensional image from a computerized x-ray.

“Having clarity about the cost-effectiveness of lung cancer screening provides further impetus to get this work started,” Associate Professor Crengle says. “If this works for Māori, then it will work for everyone else as well.”

Study findings suggested a national biennial lung cancer screening program is likely beneficial in terms of cost-effectiveness for not only the Māori but also the entire population of New Zealand. With early screening, the number of deaths will be reduced among the indigenous people. Countries with screening trials have seen a 20 to 26 percent reduction in lung cancer deaths.

For further reading, check out the original article by News Medical Life Sciences or the journal reference by BMJ Open.

Acceletronics is an industry leader in delivering the best equipment performance and service reliability from CT Scanners and Linear Accelerators across all major brands and models. Call 610-524-3300 or visit our website: https://www.acceletronics.com.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com

Effects of COVID-19 Set to Change Packaging Design

According to a news article by Packaging Digest, shifted buying patterns, heightened health and safety concerns, and sustainability outlooks are presenting packaging design challenges to the post-pandemic realm. With increased packaging demand due to shelter-at-home orders, food delivery and e-commerce became a necessity. Additionally, concerns regarding surface contamination altered the way consumers interacted with packaging.

In the post-pandemic world, these trends will most likely continue. Hence, product packaging designers are ready to respond by adapting to shifting buying patterns, designing packaging with sustainability in mind, and meeting heightened health and safety standards.

Coronavirus has altered the way in which people purchase items. Online shopping has become the safest choice for most, as store trips risk the chance of coming into contact with the virus. E-commerce traffic has spiked exponentially from 16.07 billion visits to sites in January to 21.96 in June. This translates to an ever-increasing importance for packaging design to accommodate shipping and unboxing accordingly. Adapting to these shifting buying patterns is imperative for product packaging designers.

An article published by Scientific American states that the ocean pollution plastic problem has worsened due to COVID-19. As an increasing number of humans utilize plastic gloves, wear plastic masks, and order takeout, recycling programs are declining. Researcher projections claim that by 2050, there will be more plastic by weight in the ocean than fish. To counteract the damage being done, environmental awareness is re-emerging. For the foreseeable future, food delivery services and online shopping will be at the forefront of e-commerce. More sustainable packaging is not only desired by consumers, but will be in high demand in the coming months and years.

As health and safety concerns rise, so too must the packaging associated with those expectations. People worldwide question the safety of various products purchased and brought into their homes. Countless people disinfect packages or quarantine them in order to bypass the chances of contracting coronavirus. Physical and psychological health must both be prioritized in packaging design.  

To read more information, check out the original article by Packaging Digest. For any packaging measurement needs, contact Apex Measurement systems. At Apex, we measure in coat weight, coating thickness, lamination, and moisture to ensure repeatable production results.

Apex Measurement Systems brings clients to measurement success by optimizing their control processes. We are a global company with an expert team of scientists and engineers. Our area of expertise is vast; we handle materials, applications, data analysis, and calibrations. If you can’t measure it, you can’t make it. Contact us by phone at (810) 220-6084 or e-mail us at info@apexmarketing.com to learn more about our products and services.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

How to Create an Event Budget

Budget: the dreadful word that defines most of our lives is also an imperative factor when planning an event. Maintaining a budget while preparing to host a special occasion can be tricky, but not impossible. Consider the following before you blow through your entire financial plan on those swanky cocktails or entertainment ideas.

Have you hosted a similar event in the past, or perhaps you took a peek at recent trends relating to the occasion? Set specific goals and clarify your event budget strategy. Think critically about what you will be spending your money on. Create spreadsheets chocked with information that will be vital to outlining the social get-together. By having your finances and wish list documented, your overall plan will be mapped and easier to digest.

Some questions to help you create a budget include:

  • What are you budgeting for? (Clarify your major spending categories.)
  • What are the exact costs? (Mentally walk through the event lifecycle and note expenses.)
  • What is the projected revenue? (Estimate the monetary income in all aspects.)
  • Are there unknown variables? (What’s your “Plan B” or contingency plan?)
  • Are specific prices dependent on others? (If this, then that…how will things coincide?)

Sometimes, sly attempts to reduce overall budget appearances by making the number lower than actuality (to present better on paper) can backfire. Ultimately, this can be devastating for your expenses, so try to avoid doing this if possible.

An event planner will help you when it comes to the actual nitty-gritty of budgeting, but it is always a good idea to have some sort of budget prepared before you meet with the professionals.

Have your budget ready and need to start planning your next event? At Event Planning DC, we specialize in helping clients throw the best party while still being mindful of their budget. Contact us today for more information.

Event Planning DC offers precise planning and captivating event design inspired by your unique vision, exclusive style, and the things that matter to you most. We provide comprehensive event planning of all types within the DC, MD, and VA area. Call us at 301-742-6322 or email michele@eventplanningdc.com to start planning your future…today.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

Most Popular Web Browsers as of September

Web browsers play an integral role in supporting many peoples’ daily activities. These programs allow access to the World Wide Web. Websites host different types of information; web browsers retrieve that information from the web server, displaying the content on the device used by the user. Devices include smartphones, desktops, laptops, tablets, etc. Approximately 4.3 billion people used a browser in 2019. The most popular browser is Google Chrome, followed by Apple’s Safari, Mozilla Firefox, Microsoft Edge, and others.

Data shows Google Chrome’s September market share dropped to 66.3 percent, the first time it reached below 70 percent since May. The one-point drop was the first since October 2019 when Chrome decreased by 1.1 points. Apple’s Safari represented 16.73 percent of worldwide users, Mozilla Firefox stayed steady at 4.09 percent. The browser leader, Chrome, has fallen for two straight months, which is uncharacteristic of the behemoth.

Microsoft’s browsers Edge and Explorer both recovered nearly a fifth of previous losses from August, increasing by four-tenths of a percentage point combined. While Internet Explorer stayed steady, Edge increased three-tenths of a point. Microsoft is due to release Windows 10 20H2, which will come with Chromium Edge, and will be an opportunity for a market share bump. Microsoft has a difficult road ahead in its attempt to replace users’ main web browser, Chrome, with Edge. Chrome gained the majority market share after Microsoft abandoned several versions of Internet Explorer during 2016, which enabled Google’s web browser to jump ahead. Without another catastrophic event, it seems unlikely any other browser will compete with Google Chrome’s market share.

At Creative Programs and Systems, we are familiar with all browsers and can service most devices. Have a question or want to learn more about browsers, safety, and market share? Contact CPS or read this article to learn more.

Founded in 1994, Creative Programs and Systems provides professional results for all computer needs. We design, create, and code an array of custom software programs and websites; implement internet marketing strategies for enhanced Search Engine Optimization (SEO) results; repair and provide support for computers of both residential and professional nature; build custom systems and servers, and offer secure data backups. Need assistance or want to learn more? Call us at 810-224-5252 or e-mail info@cpsmi.com.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.