Houston Matters

A Closer Look at How and Where Hazardous Chemicals Are Stored In Greater Houston

Posted on · Back in May (May 19, 2016), we spoke with Houston Chronicle reporters Matt Dempsey and Mark Collette about the first installment in an extensive series called Chemical Breakdown, looking at chemical facilities in the Houston region. In the initial piece, Dempsey and Collette looked at chemical inventories for 2,500 businesses in the Houston area and, working with […]

Houston Matters

Why Did it Take 25 Years for OSHA to Raise its Fines?

Posted on · In 1990, Vanilla Ice was on the charts, Ghost was a hit movie, and OSHA – the Occupational Safety and Health Administration – raised the amount of their penalties for employers who commit safety violations. Why is that important? Well, it would be the last time those fines changed for 25 years — until now. […]

Arts InSight

Texas vs. the Federal Government, and School Closures: Wednesday’s Show (August 17, 2016)

Posted on · Texas has always had a bit of a contentious relationship with the federal government — especially lately. One report says that, since Pres. Obama took office in 2009, his administration has been sued by the state at least 43 times. One of the most recent lawsuits deals with transgender children and bathrooms in schools, and […]

Houston Matters

In the Wake of Scaffolding Collapse — How is Construction Safety Monitored in Houston?

Posted on · Recently, huge scaffolding collapsed at an apartment complex under construction near Minute Maid Park. Several workers were injured in the incident. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating the accident. In light of the incident, we discuss how construction safety is regulated and monitored here with Jerry Nevlud, President and CEO of the Houston chapter of the […]

Full Show

Construction Safety, Grand Parkway, and Grady Gaines: Tuesday’s Show (November 3, 2015)

Posted on · Recently, huge scaffolding collapsed at an apartment complex under construction near Minute Maid Park. Several workers were injured in the incident. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating the accident. In light of the incident, we discuss how construction safety is regulated and monitored here, on this edition of Houston Matters. We welcome your questions and comments […]

Houston Matters

Booming Industry in Houston Means Greater Hazards for Workers

Posted on · Thursday marks 25 years since nearly two dozen workers died and 300 more were injured in a series of explosions and a fire at a chemical plant near the Houston Ship Channel. This anniversary of the “Phillips Disaster” reminds us that many jobs which draw people to Houston bring with them a certain degree of risk. […]

Houston Matters

Largely Invisible Tank Cleaning Industry Awash in Risk

Posted on · Rail cars, tanks and barges are routinely used to ship chemicals. These chemicals are key to the manufacture of all manner of everyday materials, from plastics to paint. Eventually, these cars, tankers and barges have to be cleaned, a procedure that is largely unregulated and raises health and safety concerns. As the Houston Chronicle reported Sunday, […]