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OSHA watch

Rule expanding requirements to report severe injuries published in Federal Register

The new rule, which we reported on last month, has been published in the Federal Register.

Safe Staff created a helpful infographic that contrasts the new requirements with the current requirements as well as illustrates changes to industries that need to keep OSHA records.

More information is available on the OSHA website.

Metrics confirm enforcement is on rise

An OSHA official speaking at the National Safety Council annual convention noted that the average proposed fine for a serious violation, the number of inspections in which proposed fines exceed $100,000, and the percentage of inspections resulting from complaints are up in fiscal year 2014. As of July, the average proposed fine for a serious violation was $2,067, a 9% increase over last year's average of $1,897. Through July, there were 125 significant cases (total proposed fines exceeding $100,000), compared to 118 for all of last year. Inspections prompted by complaints are 27% this year, rising from 23% in 2013.

Seventy-five percent of inspections resulted in citations in FY 2014, compared with 74 percent in 2013. About 50 percent of the FY 2014 inspections involved construction companies, compared with 52 percent in FY 2013.

Regional emphasis program (REP) focuses on vehicle struck-by

Effective Oct. 1, the REP covers OSHA Region 7, which encompasses Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska. In those four states, 36 percent of all investigations from fiscal year 2011 to 2013 involved vehicle struck-by fatalities. The program targets hazards associated with material handling and personnel handling motorized equipment, including powered industrial trucks, cranes and aerial lifts. Inspections will focus on whether employers are following vehicle-related standards.

Directive for inspecting cranes and derricks on construction worksites

The new directive provides compliance personnel with direction on performing inspections where power-operated equipment, covered by Subpart CC - Cranes and Derricks in Construction, is present on a construction worksite.

Training materials loan program

An OSHA fact sheet describes the free safety training materials, including videos and books, as well as how to access and borrow them from the Resource Center.

Whistleblower fact sheet now available in Spanish

Filing Whistleblower Complaints under the Consumer Financial Protection Act fact sheet is now available in Spanish.

Recent fines and awards

Contractor cited for 25 serious violations at Hockanum Mill renovation site - Connecticut

Manchester-based Rockville Construction LLC was cited for 25 serious violations of workplace safety and health standards and faces $107,100 in fines for inadequate safeguards against lead exposure, respirator deficiencies, falls and electrical hazards.

FedEx Ground Packaging System Inc. cited for machine guarding hazard - Massachusetts

FedEx Ground Packaging System Inc. failed to guard a conveyor belt properly at its Wilmington, MA shipping distribution center and exposed its employees to potential injuries and faces $44,000 in fines. The company was cited in 2010 and 2011 for similar hazards at company facilities in Grove City, Ohio, and Syracuse, New York.

Contractor with history of safety violations faces $61,600 in fines - New Hampshire

Employees of Ken Stanley, doing business as A+ Roofing, were exposed to potentially fatal falls of up to 25 feet at a Somersworth job site because their employer failed to ensure the use of required fall protection. Inspected as a result of a report from a passer-by, the Milton-based roofing contractor, who has been cited five times previously for the same hazard, faces $61,600 in proposed fines.

Aerosol paint and coatings manufacturer cites for willful, repeat safety violations - Wisconsin

An inspection conducted after a complaint alleging three separate fires at Quest Specialty Coatings has resulted in the issuance of eight safety violations. Many of the violations were cited under Process Safety Management Standards, which contain specific requirements for managing highly hazardous chemicals in work processes. Proposed penalties total $132,800.

Detailed descriptions of the citations above and other OSHA citations can be found here.