Tag Archives: OSHA Enforcement

OSHA Issues Three New Enforcement Directives

During a particularly busy September, OSHA issued three new enforcement directives that employers should review: Enforcement Procedures for Investigating or Inspecting Workplace Violence Incidents.  On September 8, 2011, OSHA issued its first ever directive instructing compliance officers on how to conduct inspections that occur as a result of workplace violence incidents.  The directive "clarifies and expands" OSHA policies in the … Continue Reading

Sports and OSHA Standards, They Go Together, Really

As sports fans begin their annual football watching, rivalry matches, and tailgating, most forget that sporting teams are often “employers” or associated with an “employer.” Like other employers, Colleges and Universities, School Districts, and Professional Sports Teams must comply with Occupational Safety and Health Act (“OSHA”) standards. These employer obligations recently were spotlighted in a fatal … Continue Reading

Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission Establishes Test for Applying Attorney-Client Privilege to Third-Party Reports

In a case of first impression, the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission has established a three-part test for employers claiming third-party safety and health audits protected from disclosure by the attorney-client privilege. Applying underlying legal principles of privilege to the technical area of safety and health assessments, the Commission has set forth steps that all … Continue Reading

Nevada OSHA Beefs Up Enforcement Efforts

Facing charges of ineffectiveness and an overall failure to protect Nevada workers, Nevada OSHA, has come under fire recently from both the media and the federal government. In response, Nevada OSHA has effected changes to its investigative practices that could spell trouble for unwary and unprepared employers. As reported in the Las Vegas Review Journal earlier … Continue Reading

OSHA to Revise Whistleblower Investigations Manual

In response to external and internal reviews of the operation and effectiveness of OSHA’s Whistleblower Protecton Program, OSHA has announced significant changes in how the Agency runs the program.  OSHA enforces the whistleblower provisions of 21 different statutes, including Section 11(c) of the OSH Act and other workplace and environmental safety and health laws. The significant changes … Continue Reading

OSHA Provides Residential Construction Employers an Additional Three Months to Comply with New Enforcement Directive

OSHA has announced that it will give employers in residential construction an additional three months to come into compliance with its new fall protection directive.  OSHA published the new directive on December 16, 2010 and originally gave employers until June 16, 2011 to ensure their fall protection practices were compliant.  The three month extension, according to OSHA … Continue Reading

OSHA Enforcement Directive on Fall Protection in Residential Construction to Take Effect

An OSHA compliance directive requiring contractors performing residential construction comply with the residential fall protection standard will take effect as scheduled on June 16, 2011. The Standard (29 C.F.R. § 1926.501(b)(13), Duty to Have Fall Protection) generally requires that guardrails, safety nets or personal fall arrest systems be used on residential jobsites that are more than six … Continue Reading

Review Commission Holds Employers Accountable for Recordkeeping Inaccuracies During Five Year Retention Period

In a much anticipated decision, the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission (Commission) has ruled that OSHA can enforce its requirement for employers to record work-related injuries and illnesses on the OSHA 300 Log even when the employer’s duty to record the injuries and illnesses occurred more than six months before the issuance of the citation.  The employer … Continue Reading

OSHA’s PPE Compliance Directive — A Deeper Dive

OSHA’s new Enforcement Guidance for Personal Protective Equipment in General Industry (CPL 02-01-050) has been “on the street” for a few weeks and employers are still working through its details. While employers need to go through the directive carefully on their own and incorporate the aspects of the directive that are applicable to their facilities, after … Continue Reading

OSHA Issues New Enforcement Directive for Personal Protective Equipment

OSHA has established new procedures for enforcing its personal protective equipment (PPE) standards in general industry.  The compliance directive "provides general guidance for the enforcement of standards applicable to personal protective equipment (PPE) in general industry, including guidance on payment for PPE."  The new procedures became effective on February 10, 2011. The directive provides useful information to employers to help them understand … Continue Reading

OSHA Withdraws Proposed Noise Interpretation

Citing "concerns raised" and the need for "more public outreach," OSHA is withdrawing its  proposed interpretation on occupational noise.  The proposal would have altered existing Agency enforcement policy for determining when an employer could utilize PPE to protect employees from noise exposures, as opposed to relying on engineering and administrative controls.  Existing policy provides that employers will … Continue Reading

Employers: Time to Prepare And Post Your OSHA 300A

It’s that time of year again!  Employers covered by OSHA’s recordkeeping rule must prepare and post the OSHA Form 300A "Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses" by February 1 and keep the form posted until April 30.  The form must be posted at each establishment covered, in a conspicuous place where notices to employees are customarily posted. After … Continue Reading

What To Do When OSHA Comes Knocking?

With the recent increase in OSHA enforcement activity, many employers are being forced to answer the question:  "If an OSHA compliance officer visits my workplace, is my company prepared?"  Hopefully, for most employers the answer is a resounding "yes."  However, for employers who are not so sure about their ability to handle an OSHA inspection, the start … Continue Reading

OSHA Enforcement in 2009: More Serious Violations Issued

In a recently issued 2009 Enforcement Summary, OSHA claims that violations issued against employers in fiscal year 2009 were up 2.8% since fiscal year 2005.  Furthermore, the total number of serious and repeat violations were up 10.9% and 17.5%, respectively, over the same five year period.  According to the Agency, "OSHA is committed to refocusing OSHA’s priorities through … Continue Reading

Don’t Forget OSHA’s Severe Violator Enforcement Program!

It has been several months since OSHA unveiled its Severe Violator Enforcement Program (SVEP), which focuses OSHA’s enforcement resources on employers "who have demonstrated indifference to their OSH Act obligations by committing willful, repeated, or failure-to-abate violations."  This is the time for employers to ramp up their safety and health efforts to ensure that they do not become a … Continue Reading

OSHA: No Holds Barred

In what is certainly one of the most active periods in OSHA’s history, the Agency is using every tool at its disposal to ensure that employers are in compliance with OSHA’s standards and rules.  OSHA is pushing forward with new rules, enforcement initiatives, interpretive letters, media initiatives, and so forth, at an unprecedented pace. A review of OSHA’s website … Continue Reading

ADA at Loggerheads with OSHA Policy?

Check out this interesting blog post from Frank Alvarez, head of Jackson Lewis’s Disability, Leave, and Health Management practice group:  Time to Revisit ADA Medical Inquiry Rules at "Loggerheads" with OSHA Policy.  The post describes the EEOC’s narrow interpretation of the ADA rule that employee medical inquiries be "job-related and consistent with business necessity" and questions whether such a narrow interpretation … Continue Reading

OSHA’s Severe Violator Enforcement Program Effective June 18

OSHA has just announced that its Severe Violator Enforcement Program (SVEP) is effective June 18th.  The SVEP “concentrates resources on inspecting employers who have demonstrated indifference to their OSH Act obligations by willful, repeated, or failure-to-abate violations.” Under the program, an inspection of an employer meeting the criteria of an SVEP case may result in enhanced follow-up inspections of … Continue Reading

OSHA to Speak on Safety Incentive Programs

On Wednesday, May 12, at 3:00 pm ET, OSHA Assistant Secretary David Michaels will lead a special free webcast related to the issue of safety incentive programs.  Titled "A Conversation with Assistant Secretary for OSHA Dr. David Michaels:  What to do About Safety Incentives," the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) event will discuss "the difference between appropriate … Continue Reading

OSHA Updates and Extends its Recordkeeping National Emphasis Program

OSHA has updated its Recordkeeping National Emphasis Program (NEP).  The NEP, initated originally in September, 2009, was designed to investigate whether, and to what extent, injuries and illnesses are being underreported by employers.  The original NEP, as well as the revision, targets employers with low rate establishments operating in historically high rate industries.  Click here for a Special Report … Continue Reading

OSHA Unveils Severe Violator Enforcement Program and Increase in Penalties

In moves designed to enhance the effectiveness of its enforcement activities, OSHA has unveiled a new “Severe Violator Enforcement Program” and a memorandum to Regional Administrators that has the effect of increasing penalties for employers receiving citations. These enhancements are further evidence of OSHA’s emphasis on enforcement and all employers must take note. Severe Violator Enforcement … Continue Reading