Weekly Virginia OSHA Inspection Report; Friday, August 8- Thursday, August 14, 2014

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Each week, oshawlawfirm.com will keep you informed regarding OSHA inspection activity in the
Commonwealth of Virginia. We welcome you to visit our site to learn if OSHA is active in your
area of the state. In order to be prepared for an OSHA inspection, it is important to learn what
types of OSHA inspections are taking place in your area.

It was a moderately busy week in terms of the number of OSHA inspections occurring in Virginia. During the week
beginning Friday, August 8 and ending Thursday, August 14, 2014, the Department of Labor reported 19 OSHA
inspections taking place in the Commonwealth of Virginia, with one (1) inspection originating from the
Norfolk office, and 18 originating in other offices. Of interest, 15 of the 19 reported inspections
related to construction work, in both the residential and commercial settings.

OSHA (or its state equivalent, in this case, VOSH) may inspect a worksite under various sources of
authority, including inspections conducted as the result of a complaint- generally lodged by an employee
who reports purportedly unsafe working conditions to OSHA; as the result of a referral- generally from
the media due to reports of an incident (e.g, accident involving injuries) taking place at the worksite;
as part of an these inspections take place because the employer appears on a list created by OSHA relating
to an emphasis program it has undertaken, including National Emphasis Programs (e.g., fall protection,
chemical reported fatalities or injuries taking place at the facility (e.g., employer contacts OSHA pursuant
to regulations mandating reporting certain incidents).

This week the Department of Labor reported the following inspections in Virginia:

Total inspections: 19

Source of Authority:

Complaint Based: 3
Programmed/Planned: 14
Referral Based: 2

Municipality: Chatham- 1; Chesapeake- 3; Colonial Heights- 1; Fredericksburg- 1; Martinsville- 2;
Mechanicsburg- 1; Norfolk- 2; Richmond- 5; Thornburg- 2; Quantico- 1

Scope of Inspection

Partial: 13
Comprehensive/Complete: 4
Follow-up: 0
Other: 2

Nature of Inspection:

Construction: 15
General Industry: 4
Please note that not all OSHA inspections are reported on OSHA‚ inspection database website.
If your worksite is inspected, feel free to contact our firm with any questions you may have regarding
the OSHA citation defense process. OSHA will issue citations from any given inspection within six
(6) months from the beginning of the inspection. In federal OSHA plan states and Virginia, you only
have 15 working days to contest the citation, including the proposed penalties and abatement periods
set forth therein, from once it is received. If you participate in an informal settlement conference,
this participation may not toll the time in which you must issue a notice of contest. If a timely notice
of contest is not provided, you may lose your right to contest the proposed citations, including the
attendant penalties and abatement periods. Once your notice of contest is received, OSHA or its state-plan
equivalent will initiate the prosecution of the proposed OSHA citations by filing a complaint against
your company.

Previous Virginia OSHA Inspection Reports:

Weekly Virginia OSHA Inspection Report; Friday, August 1- Thursday, August 7, 2014

Weekly Virginia OSHA Inspection Report; Friday, July 25-Thursday, July 31, 2014

Weekly Virginia OSHA Inspection Report; Friday, July 18-Thursday, July 24, 2014

Source: www.osha.gov

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Mid-Atlantic OSHA Inspection Report; July 2014

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Two construction workers pouring concrete

Each month, oshawlawfirm.com will keep you informed regarding OSHA inspection
activity in the Mid-Atlantic States. We welcome you to visit our site to learn
if OSHA is active in your state.

During July 2014, the Department of Labor reported at total of 192 OSHA inspections
taking place in the Commonwealth of Virginia, with three (3) of those inspections
originating from the Norfolk office, and 189 originating in other offices.
By way of comparison, 11 inspections originating in the Norfolk office took
place during July 2013, with 298 inspections originating from other Virginia offices
taking place during that time.

Reported OSHA inspections occurring in other Mid-Atlantic States included the following:

West Virginia (federal OSHA plan): 26 inspections
Maryland (state plan): 72 inspections
North Carolina (state plan): 179 inspections
South Carolina (state plan): 87 inspections
Tennessee (state plan): 74 inspections
Pennsylvania (federal OSHA plan): 277 inspections

Please note that not all OSHA inspections are reported on OSHA‚ inspection database website.

OSHA may inspect a worksite under various sources of authority, including inspections
conducted as the result of a complaint- generally lodged by an employee who reports purportedly unsafe working conditions to OSHA; as the result of a referral- generally from the media due to reports of an incident (e.g, accident involving injuries) taking place at the worksite; as part of an OSHA program (programmed inspection)- these inspections take place because the employer appears on a list created by OSHA relating to an emphasis program it has undertaken, including National Emphasis Programs (e.g., fall protection, chemical issues (PSM-related processes)); or self-reported fatalities or injuries taking place at the facility (e.g., employer contacts OSHA pursuant to regulations mandating reporting certain incidents).

If your worksite is inspected, feel free to contact our firm with any questions you may have
regarding the OSHA citation defense process. OSHA will issue citations from any given inspection within six (6) months from the beginning of the inspection. In federal OSHA plan states, you only have 15 working days to contest the citation, including the proposed penalties and abatement periods set forth therein, from once it is received. If you participate in an informal settlement conference, this participation may not toll the time in which you must issue a notice of contest. If a timely notice of contest is not provided, you may lose your right to contest the proposed citations, including the attendant penalties and abatement periods. Once your notice of contest is received, OSHA or its state-plan equivalent will initiate the prosecution of the proposed OSHA citations by filing a complaint against your company.

Previous OSHA Inspection Reports:

Mid-Atlantic OSHA Inspection Report; June 2014

Source: www.osha.gov.

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Weekly Virginia OSHA Inspection Report; Friday, August 1-Thursday, August 7, 2014

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Worker at dusk
Each week, oshawlawfirm.com will keep you informed regarding OSHA inspection activity in the Commonwealth of Virginia. We welcome you to visit our site to learn if OSHA is active in your area of the state. In order to be prepared for an OSHA inspection, it is important to learn what types of OSHA inspections are taking place in your area.
It was a light week in terms of the number of OSHA inspections in Virginia. During the week beginning Friday, August 1 and ending Thursday, August 7, 2014, the Department of Labor reported only 6 OSHA inspections taking place in the Commonwealth of Virginia, with 1 inspection originating from the Norfolk office, and 5 originating in other offices.
OSHA (or its state equivalent, in this case, VOSH) may inspect a worksite under various
sources of authority, including inspections conducted as the result of a complaint- generally lodged by an employee who reports purportedly unsafe working conditions to OSHA; as the result of a referral- generally from the media due to reports of an incident
(e.g, accident involving injuries) taking place at the worksite; as part of an these inspections take place because the employer appears on a list created by OSHA relating to an emphasis program it has undertaken, including National Emphasis Programs (e.g., fall protection, chemical reported fatalities or injuries taking place at the facility (e.g., employer contacts OSHA pursuant to regulations mandating reporting certain incidents).

This week the Department of Labor reported the following inspections in Virginia:

Total inspections: 6

Source of Authority:

Complaint Based: 3
Programmed: 3
Referral Based: 0

Municipality: Abingdon- 1; Hopewell- 1; Newport News- 1; Springfield- 2; Virginia Beach- 1

Scope of Inspection:

Partial: 5
Comprehensive/”Complete”: 1
Follow-up: 0

Nature of Inspection:

Construction: 4
General Industry: 2

 

Please note that not all OSHA inspections are reported on OSHA’s inspection database website. If your worksite is inspected, feel free to contact our firm with any questions you may have regarding the OSHA citation defense process. OSHA will issue citations from any given inspection within six (6) months from the beginning of the inspection. In federal OSHA plan states and Virginia, you only have 15 working days to contest the citation,
including the proposed penalties and abatement periods set forth therein, from once
it is received. If you participate in an informal settlement conference, this participation may not toll the time in which you must issue a notice of contest. If a timely notice
of contest is not provided, you may lose your right to contest the proposed citations, including the attendant penalties and abatement periods. Once your notice of contest is received, OSHA or its state-plan equivalent will initiate the prosecution of the proposed OSHA citations by filing a complaint against your company.

Previous Virginia OSHA Inspection Reports:

Weekly Virginia OSHA Inspection Report; Friday, July 25-Thursday, July 31, 2014

Weekly Virginia OSHA Inspection Report; Friday, July 18-Thursday, July 24, 2014

Source: www.osha.gov

 

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Weekly Virginia OSHA Inspection Report; Friday, July 25-Thursday, July 31, 2014

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Crane at twilight

Each week, oshalawfirm.com will keep you informed regarding OSHA inspection activity in the Commonwealth of Virginia. We welcome you to visit our site to learn if OSHA is active in your area of the state. During the week beginning Friday, July 25 and ending Thursday, July 31, 2014, the Department of Labor reported a total of 23 OSHA inspections taking place in the Commonwealth of Virginia, with 1 inspection originating from the Norfolk office, and 22 originating in other offices. It is important for your worksite to keep informed
regarding the number of OSHA inspections taking place, as well as the types of inspections
being conducted, in order to prepare for an OSHA inspection at your worksite.

OSHA (or its state equivalent, in this case, VOSH) may inspect a worksite under various
sources of authority,including inspections conducted as the result of a complaint-
generally lodged by an employee who reports purportedly unsafe working conditions to OSHA; as the result of a referral- generally from the media due to reports of an incident (e.g,
accident involving injuries) taking place at the worksite; as part of an OSHA program
(programmed inspection)- these inspections take place because the employer appears on
a list created by OSHA relating to an emphasis program it has undertaken, including National Emphasis Programs (e.g., fall protection, chemical issues (PSM-related processes)); or self-reported fatalities or injuries taking place at the facility (e.g., employer contacts OSHA pursuant to regulations mandating reporting certain incidents).

This week the Department of Labor reported the following inspections in Virginia:

Total inspections: 23

Source of Authority:

Complaint Based: 5

Programmed: 16

Referral Based: 1

Follow-up: 1

Other: 0

Location by Municipality:

Abingdon- 1; Amelia Court House- 1; Bedford- 1; Cape Charles- 2; Chesapeake- 1; Christiansburg- 1; Gainesville- 3; Hampton- 1; Lynchburg- 1; Montvale- 1; Newport News- 1; Richmond- 1; Sandston- 1; Temperanceville- 1; Virginia Beach- 4; Waynesboro- 1; Williamsburg- 1

Scope of Inspection:

Partial: 16

Comprehensive/Complete: 5

Other: 2

Please note that not all OSHA inspections are reported on OSHA‚ inspection database website.

If your worksite is inspected, feel free to contact our firm with any questions you may have
regarding the OSHA citation defense process. OSHA will issue citations from any given inspection within six (6) months from the beginning of the inspection. In Virginia and federal OSHA plan states, you only have 15 working days to contest the citation, including the proposed penalties and abatement periods set forth therein, from once it is received. If you participate in an informal settlement conference, this participation may not toll the time in which you must issue a notice of contest. If a timely notice of contest is not provided, you may lose your right to contest the proposed citations, including the attendant penalties and abatement periods. Once your notice of contest is received, OSHA or its state-plan equivalent will initiate the prosecution of the proposed OSHA citations by filing a complaint against your company.

See Virginia OSHA Inspection Report for July 18-July 24.

Source: www.osha.gov

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Weekly Virginia OSHA Inspection Report: Friday, July 18-Thursday, July 24, 2014

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Construction Worksite with equipment and concrete columns

Each week, oshalawfirm.com will keep you informed regarding OSHA inspection activity in the Commonwealth of Virginia. We welcome you to visit our site to learn if OSHA is active in your area of the state. During the week beginning Friday, July 18 and ending Thursday, July 24, 2014, the Department of Labor reported a total of 25 OSHA inspections taking place in the Commonwealth of Virginia, with 1 inspection originating from the Norfolk office, and 24 originating in other offices. It is important for your worksite to keep informed regarding the number of OSHA inspections taking place, as well as the types of inspections being conducted.

OSHA (or its state equivalent, in this case, VOSH) may inspect a worksite under various sources of authority, including inspections conducted as the result of a complaint- generally lodged by an employee who reports purportedly unsafe working conditions to OSHA; as the result of a referral- generally from the media due to reports of an incident (e.g, accident involving injuries) taking place at the worksite; as part of an OSHA program (programmed inspection)- these inspections take place because the employer appears on a list created by OSHA relating to an emphasis program it has undertaken, including National Emphasis Programs (e.g., fall protection, chemical issues (PSM-related processes)); or self-reported fatalities or injuries taking place at the facility (e.g., employer contacts OSHA pursuant to regulations mandating reporting certain incidents).

This week the Department of Labor reported the following inspections in Virginia:

Total inspections: 25

Source of Authority:

Complaint Based: 3

Programmed: 19

Referral Based: 1

Other: 2

Location by Municipality:

Alexandria-1; Appomattox-2; Arlington-3; Ashburn-4; Berryville-1; Chesapeake-3; Evington-1; Forest-1; Harrisonburg-1; Lexington-2; Newport News-1; Norton-1; Richmond-1; Roanoke-2; Stafford- 1

Scope of Inspection:

Partial: 19

Comprehensive/”Complete”: 4

Follow-up: 1

Other: 2

Please note that not all OSHA inspections are reported on OSHA’s inspection database website.

If your worksite is inspected, feel free to contact our firm with any questions you may have regarding the OSHA citation defense process. OSHA will issue citations from any given inspection within six (6) months from the beginning of the inspection. In Virginia and federal OSHA plan states, you only have 15 working days to contest the citation, including the proposed penalties and abatement periods set forth therein, from once it is received. If you participate in an informal settlement conference, this participation may not toll the time in which you must issue a notice of contest. If a timely notice of contest is not provided, you may lose your right to contest the proposed citations, including the attendant penalties and abatement periods. Once your notice of contest is received, OSHA or its state-plan equivalent will initiate the prosecution of the proposed OSHA citations by filing a complaint against your company.

Source: www.osha.gov

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Mid-Atlantic OSHA Inspection Report – June 2014

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Black and White Shot of construction plans and tools

Each month, oshawlawfirm.com will keep you informed regarding OSHA inspection activity in the Mid-Atlantic States. We welcome you to visit our site to learn if OSHA is active in your state.

During June 2014, the Department of Labor reported at total of 259 OSHA inspections taking place in the Commonwealth of Virginia, with 18 of those inspections originating from the Norfolk office, and 241 originating in other offices. By way of comparison, only five (5) inspections originating in the Norfolk office took place during June 2013, with 297 inspections originating from other Virginia offices taking place during that time.

Reported OSHA inspections occurring in other Mid-Atlantic States included the following:

West Virginia (federal OSHA plan): 24 inspections
Maryland (state plan): 12 inspections
North Carolina (state plan): 185 inspections
South Carolina (state plan): 60 inspections
Tennessee (state plan): 69 inspections
Pennsylvania (federal OSHA plan): 301 inspections

Please note that not all OSHA inspections are reported on OSHA’s inspection database website.

OSHA may inspect a worksite under various sources of authority, including inspections conducted as the result of a complaint- generally lodged by an employee who reports purportedly unsafe working conditions to OSHA; as the result of a referral- generally from the media due to reports of an incident (e.g, accident involving injuries) taking place at the worksite; as part of an OSHA program (programmed inspection)- these inspections take place because the employer appears on a list created by OSHA relating to an emphasis program it has undertaken, including National Emphasis Programs (e.g., fall protection, chemical issues (PSM-related processes)); or self-reported fatalities or injuries taking place at the facility (e.g., employer contacts OSHA pursuant to regulations mandating reporting certain incidents).

If your worksite is inspected, feel free to contact our firm with any questions you may have regarding the OSHA citation defense process. OSHA will issue citations from any given inspection within six (6) months from the beginning of the inspection. In federal OSHA plan states, you only have 15 working days to contest the citation, including the proposed penalties and abatement periods set forth therein, from once it is received. If you participate in an informal settlement conference, this participation may not toll the time in which you must issue a notice of contest. If a timely notice of contest is not provided, you may lose your right to contest the proposed citations, including the attendant penalties and abatement periods. Once your notice of contest is received, OSHA or its state-plan equivalent will initiate the prosecution of the proposed OSHA citations by filing a complaint against your company.

Source: www.osha.gov.

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OSHA’s Multi-Employer Doctrine

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Two construction workers pouring concrete

On multi-employer work sites (in both the general and construction sectors), more than one employer may be cited for a hazardous condition that violates an OSHA regulation. The Multi-Employer Doctrine allows the Secretary of Labor to cite an employer for the violation of an OSHA regulation even for a regulatory breach by a non-employee working on a site controlled by the employer. OSHA generally will use a two-step process to determine whether it will cite more than one employer at a work site. OSHA first will determine whether the employer is a creating, exposing, correcting, or controlling employer. These terms, as defined by OSHA, are set forth below:

A. The Creating Employer

Employer that caused a hazardous condition that violates an OSHA regulation.

B. The Exposing Employer

Employer whose own employees are exposed to the hazard.

C. The Correcting Employer

Employer that is engaged in a common enterprise with the exposing employer and is responsible for correcting the hazard. This may arise where an employer is given the responsibility of installing and/or maintaining particular safety/health equipment or devices on a worksite.

D. The Controlling Employer

Employer who has general supervisory authority over the worksite, including the power to correct safety and health violations itself or require others to correct them.

E. Multiple Roles

A creating, correcting or controlling employer will often also be an exposing employer. Exposing, creating and controlling employers can also be correcting employers if they are authorized to correct the hazard.

If the employer falls into one of these categories, it has obligations with respect to OSHA requirements. After determining that the employer meets one of the above definitions, OSHA will determine if the employer’s actions were sufficient to meet those obligations. If not, OSHA may cite both the employer whose employees committed the safety violation, and a second employer who falls into one of the above categories.

Example: Company A hires Contractor X to replace a grain distributor at Company A‚ facility. Contractor X informs Company A that it will conduct all of the work, and provide its employees with training and personal protective equipment for the work required. Company A requires Contractor X to certify that it will comply with all applicable OSHA regulations, including those established by Company A for contractors at its site. Contractor X agrees to do so.

Contractor X oversees the work of its own employees. Contractor X‚ employees fail to use fall protection when installing the distributor, which is located 100 feet above the ground. An OSHA inspector drives by and notices the lack of safety equipment. An employee of Company A arrives at the work site around the same time to check on the work. After confirming that fall protection was not being utilized, OSHA cites both Contractor X and Company A for a violation of OSHA‚ fall protection regulations. OSHA claims that Company A was a controlling employer on the work site and thus was responsible for ensuring the safety of the persons working thereon, even non-employees of Company A.

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What are State and Federal OSHA Plans?

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Construction Worksite with equipment and concrete columns

[ABs_h type=”2″]”Federal” Plans[/ABs_h]

Federal government oversees enforcement of OSHA Act in 28 states, including West Virginia, Georgia, Florida, Texas, Alabama and Pennsylvania.

[ABs_h type=”2″]”State” Plans[/ABs_h]

Twenty-two (22) states enforce the OSHA Act (or its revisions thereto) under federally approved “state” plans, including Virginia, Maryland, North Carolina, and South Carolina (Kansas just applied to be a State Plan).

Va. Code Section 40.1-22; Virginia’s state plan “must be at least as stringent as standard promulgated by” Federal OSHA.

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Fundamental Requirements Under the OSHA Act

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Workers climbing on a rebar framework

There are certain fundamental requirements under the OSHA Act that are crucial for employers to remember:

  • An employer must report a fatality or catastrophic event (3 or more employees admitted to hospital) to OSHA within eight (8) hours of the incident (including fatal heart attacks if work related)
  • An employer must record most work-related deaths, injuries or illnesses on the OSHA 300 Log
  • Section 11(c) of the Act prohibits an employer from discharging, retaliating, or discriminating against an employee who has complained to OSHA, participated in an OSHA inspection, or participated or testified in any OSHA-related proceeding
  • Employees Can Now File Whistleblower Complaints Online
  • When you receive an OSHA Citation, you must post it (or a copy of it) at or near the place where each violation occurred to make employees awareof the hazards to which they may be exposed. The OSHA Citation must remain posted for 3 working days or until the hazard is abated, whichever is longer. (Saturdays, Sundays and Federal holidays are not counted as working days).
  • Most States have adopted largely verbatim Federal version of the Act
  • Secretary must file a Federal OSHA Complaint within 21 days of your notice of contest
  • States have varying times in which their complaint can be filed, if any at all
  • (e.g., Virginia ‚Äî immediately refer to Commonwealth‚ attorney and file complaint)
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