LONG BEACH, Calif. — Future risk management challenges facing public entity risk managers include working from home, earthquakes and safe drinking fountains, a risk manager says.
Gary Rosenblum, associate vice president, risk management, at California State University, Sacramento, discussed these during a session on future trends in risk management at the Public Risk Management Association’s annual conference on Monday.
The Swedish Work Environment Agency “does not regulate the home workplace,” he said. People are putting in longer hours working from home, and they’re going to get hurt, he said.
“In the future, I think OSHA will wake up and try to do something about regulating home work,”; Rosenblum said. “You’re going to find that this is going to be a big topic and it’s going to be very difficult to regulate.”
Rosenblum said technology has advanced to the point where there can be some warning of an impending earthquake. Those 30 miles away get 30 seconds of warning, for example, and those 60 miles away, one minute, he said.
California has dealt with the development by creating an earthquake warning system that sends messages to people’s cell phones.
But a better earthquake risk reduction system is needed that would provide information that industry, hospitals and utilities could use, Rosenblum said.
“We could have every elevator in the state of California have an earthquake-proof connection,” he said. When an earthquake is imminent, an elevator can stop at the next floor and open the door.
With a picture of an older water fountain, Mr. Rosenblum that it dispenses unsafe amounts of lead, “and one day someone will test it and say you’re killing them with lead.”
Rosenblum said, “To get ahead of that curve … we ended up testing every single fountain on campus,” a total of 975. They are tested every four years, and a sticker on each gives information about how little lead it dispenses.
“This is the future of water fountains, and if you’re an entity that has a lot of water fountains, think about that,” Rosenblum said.