Employers cited for workplace safety or health violations could find themselves facing significantly higher penalties and possible felony prosecution under a new federal initiative to use alleged OSHA violations as a launching point to investigate whether companies are also violating environmental laws.
OSHA continues to cite employers aggressively, and at the same time is suggesting and frequently mandating certain types of abatement. This may overstep their authority, but many employers enter into a formal or informal OSHA settlements trying to avoid expensive litigation and abate alleged violations following agency’s suggestions or mandates.
If you are like me, when you first heard that Congress and the President had agreed upon a bipartisan budget bill that would fund the government for the next two years, you said to yourself, “It’s about time.” But as proof that nothing comes free, buried deep in the bill is a provision that will raise the maximum OSHA fines by over 50 percent in 2016.
General contractors at construction sites are being held to a higher level of responsibility for coordinating the safety activities of contractors when it comes to confined spaces in what may be a little-noticed provision of a new OSHA standard.
New OSHA recordkeeping rules that went into effect this year are creating confusion among employers about the definition of an amputation and how to quickly determine if an incident that occurred after work hours is actually work-related, according to an article in Business Insurance magazine.
A federal appeals court has ruled against OSHA in a case stemming from a fatal accident involving a lathe at a manufacturing plant, saying that the agency’s interpretation of its regulations on machine guards “strains a common sense reading.”