OSHA Issues List of Most Frequently Violated Safety Standards

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is the federal agency tasked with enforcing the laws related to workplace health and safety. In Fiscal year 2011 (October 1, 2010 through September 30, 2011), there were a total of 40,648 federal inspections. Because safety compliance can be a daunting task, knowing the safety issues which seem to draw the most OSHA attention can assist employers in developing compliance plans. OSHA recently issued a list of the 10 standards for which citations are most frequently issued—in the industries in which they occurred—for fiscal year 2011:

Scaffolding – construction (29 CFR 1926.451);
Fall protection – construction (29 CFR 1926.501)
Hazard communication – general industry (29 CFR 1910.1200)
Respiratory protection – general industry (29 CFR 1910.134)
Control of hazardous energy (lockout/tagout) – general industry (29 CFR 1910.147)
Electrical, wiring methods, components and equipment – general industry (29 CFR 1910.305)
Powered industrial trucks – general industry (29 CFR 1910.178)
Ladders – construction (29 CFR 1926.1053)
Electrical systems design, general requirements – general industry (29 CFR 1910.303)
Machines, general requirements – general industry (29 CFR 1910.212)
 
In a similar vein, OSHA identified the standards for which the highest penalties were assessed for the same period:
 
Fall protection – construction (29 CFR 1926.501)
Scaffolding, general requirements – construction (29 CFR 1926.451)
Control of hazardous energy (lockout/tagout) – general industry (29 CFR 1910.147)
Machines, general requirements – general industry (29 CFR 1910.212)
Ladders – construction (29 CFR 1926.1053)
Excavations, requirements for protective systems (29 CFR 1926.652)
Powered industrial trucks – general industry (29 CFR 1910.178)
General duty clause (Section 5(a)(1) of the OSH Act)
Electrical, wiring methods, components and equipment – general industry (29 CFR 1910.305)
Electrical systems design, general requirements – general industry (29 CFR 1910.303)
 
If OSHA contacts you, arrives at your door, or issues you a citation alleging a health or safety violation, contact your MSEC representative for assistance.