Operating within OSHA Standards
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has two primary functions. These functions consist of setting safety standards for private-sector businesses and conducting investigations to ensure these operational standards are being met. The purpose is to protect employees from unsanitary, hazardous, or dangerous working conditions. Under reasonable suspicion, OSHA has the right to conduct an inspection of your facility or job site with or without prior consent, so it is imperative to operate to these federal standards at all times. It is also important to have an experienced and knowledgable OSHA defense attorney in Brandon for legal representation should you be forced to defend your firm against an OSHA citation.
To ensure you are meeting the general safety regulations of the OSH Act, our Brandon OSHA defense lawyers have provided some primary expectations that should be met within your job site or facility.
Access to Medical and Exposure Records:
According to OSHA regulations, your business must allow employees, their legal representation, and OSHA representatives access to company records that relate to injuries, relevant medical records, and toxicity reports that outline exposure to hazardous substances.
Hazard Identification and Safety:
Companies are required to conduct self-assessments of hazardous or potentially hazardous material. Containers with hazardous material must be properly labeled. First time shipments of the material must also include a Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS). If receiving hazardous materials, employers must use the MSDS to train employees on how to properly handle the material.
Personal Protective Equipment:
Required personal protective equipment (PPE) may vary between industry and job type, but all PPE standards are designed to protect employees from workplace hazards. Items that must be provided and paid for by the employer may include hard hats, goggles, gloves, hearing protection, and respirators. Each employee found without proper safety gear can count as an individual violation.
Employers are required to train employees on hazards of the job site, facility, and their specific duties, along with safety and emergency procedures. Training must comply with the Training Requirements in OSHA Standards and Training Guidelines. As OSHA defense lawyers in Brandon, we also recommend developing a standard training program for all employees upon hiring.
Maintain Injury and Illness Records:
If your construction business has more than 10 employees, you must maintain OSHA injury and illness forms, OSHA Form 300, OSHA Form 300A, and OSHA Form 301. OSHA Form 300 is used to record all major injuries and illnesses that happen over the course year. Events that should be logged include, work-related deaths and serious injuries or illnesses. By February 1st of each new year, employers are required to post OSHA Form 300A in the facility with the previous years reports. OSHA Form 301 is the individual incident report that includes specific details and employee statements about injury. If a workers’ compensation form is filed, the form can take the place of the individual incident report in the company’s records.
Report Fatalities and Injuries:
Employers are required to notify OSHA within 8 hours of an accident that results in the death of one or more employees or the hospitalization of three or more employees. If a major job-related accident occurs, it is also important to contact your OSHA defense attorney in Brandon to assist in gathering the appropriate information to thoroughly investigate the incident.
Trust The Experienced OSHA Defense Lawyers from Cotney Construction Law
The Brandon OSHA defense lawyers from Cotney Construction Law know the steps your business should take to defend against OSHA violations. Over the past 15 years, Trent Cotney has represented contractors, subcontractors, suppliers, manufacturers and others in the construction industry from the initial Notice of Contest to the appellate courts.
To schedule an appointment with one of our Brandon OSHA defense attorneys, please call us at 813.579.3278 or submit our contact request form to request a consultation.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.