Running a company is hard work. As someone who has held this professional role for an extended period of time, you have likely come across many instances in your career that you had not anticipated, including visits from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
Because employee safety remains a top priority, OSHA may schedule periodic visits to ensure that companies do not put their workers at unnecessary risk. However, they may also conduct an investigation if serious injuries resulted from a work-related accident. You certainly do not want to have OSHA cite you for any violations, so you may find it in your best interests to avoid major issues.
Depending on the type of business you run, your employees may face various hazards. However, OSHA commonly finds several of the same violations across many industries and issue citations as a result. Ten of the most common violations include issues with the following aspects of work sites:
- Training related to fall protection
- General requirements for fall protection
- Respiratory protection
- Machine guarding
- Hazard communication
- Electrical wiring
- Powered industrial trucks
The majority of these issues make the top 10 list annually, but the report noted that violations relating to training requirements for fall protection were new to the list in 2017. The violation that resulted in the most citations related to general requirements for fall protection, and OSHA issued over 6,000 citations for those violations last year.
Protecting against issues
By knowing what issues commonly come about, you may have a better chance of protecting your workers. Assessing the previously mentioned aspects that apply to your worksite as well as other factors may help you avoid any negative results from an OSHA inspection and help you make sure your workers do not suffer any avoidable injuries.
Of course, OSHA inspections can make anyone feel apprehensive, even if you do your best to maintain a safe work environment. You may not feel fully prepared for an OSHA inspection, so it may work in your best interests to better understand your rights in this type of situation. Consulting with a business attorney can help you know your best steps for handling an investigation and dealing with any citations that may come against your business.
Remembering that you have legal rights and options may help you protect your company when necessary.