Watch out for these top OSHA violations in industrial manufacturing and construction

14 November, 2018
Watch out for these top OSHA violations in industrial manufacturing and construction

The industrial manufacturing and construction industries fall under more stringent oversight from safety regulators than other industries, like retail or law.

Due to the type of work in industrial manufacturing and construction, workers are regularly exposed to dangerous hazards, and employers are mandated to conform to OSHA standards designed to minimize risks and lower injury rates. For employers in these industries, the higher degree of risk, high volume of touch points and strict OSHA oversight requires a high amount of safety procedures.

The most common OSHA violations point to where employers should be more vigilant, and from year to year, OSHA sees spikes in different kinds of violations. For instance, in 2014, Machine Guarding was the ninth most common violation type on for General Industry. In 2015, this violation rose to sixth. According to OSHA, the reason for the spike was new recordkeeping and reporting processes, specifically that OSHA made a new rule that mandated the reporting of all amputations. Then, when an amputation was reported, it activated an investigation, and in many instances, that led to OSHA inspectors discovering that safety standards associated with machine guarding were not being followed.

Ever since the new final rule for Recording and Reporting Occupational Injuries and Illnesses went into effect in 2016, OSHA has been ready for such spikes, with more workplace injuries being properly reported and examined.

For employers in industrial manufacturing and construction, knowing the top violations can allow them to develop, apply and enforce workplace safety practice that keep employees safe, and OSHA inspectors from becoming frequent visitors.

Common Manufacturing OSHA Violations To Avoid

Top violations in industrial manufacturing

It’s quite normal to see Respiratory Protection and Lockout/Tagout top the chart of violations in Industrial Manufacturing. Hazard Communication refers to ways that employers are supposed to warn employees about hazardous chemicals inside a workplace. In 2016, the new Hazard Communication convention went into effect, and many organizations had not yet applied and trained employees on the Globally Harmonized System (GHS) guidelines, leading to a boost in related violations.

Other top violations include those for Machine Guarding, Respiratory Protection, Powered Industrial Trucks, Electrical, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Abrasive Wheel Machinery, Mechanical Power Presses and Guarding for Floor and Wall Openings.

Top violations in construction

A dangerous industry by nature, construction has its own set of strict OSHA standards that frequently go beyond those in manufacturing. Fall Protection infractions are usually the No.1 kind of violation, followed by Scaffold and Ladders violations, which are inherently associated with fall hazards. While manufacturing recently saw a new final rule instated on walking-working surfaces and fall protection, the construction industry has always had more strict guidelines. Unfortunately, fall hazards are common in construction and the high number of OSHA violations associated with falls indicates the necessity for better safety management practices that include extensive fall protection plans.

Other top violations for the construction industry include violations for PPE, Excavation, Electrical, Hazard Communication General Safety, Aerial Lifts and Respiratory Protection.

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