Workplace Safety and Health Law Blog | Fisher & Phillips LLP
News, commentary and legal updates from Fisher & Phillips attorneys who
assist employers with workplace safety and health matters.

Would OSHA “Punt” on Inspecting an NFL Team?

October 5, 2015 07:48
by Travis Vance
The tragedy this August that claimed the life of one worker and injured another during construction of the new $1.1B Minnesota Vikings football stadium reminded us that serious accidents can happen at any site no matter the size or cost. As an avid football fan and OSHA lawyer, and with football season just getting started, it also got me thinking about workplace safety issues occurring at professional football stadiums on Sunday afternoons. Could (and would) OSHA actually inspect the “wo...


Tags: ,

What’s the Real Effect of OSHA’s Revamped Inspection Process, the “Enforcement Weighing System?”

October 2, 2015 08:54
by Howard Mavity
On October 1, OSHA started its “Enforcement Weighing System,” which means that OSHA Compliance Officers and Area Offices will be under less pressure to complete a number of inspections and will receive credit for separate “enforcement units” within an individual inspection. This means that potentially OSHA will conduct fewer inspections and/or routine/straightforward inspections will receive less time and scrutiny. Dr. Michaels explained that Industrial Hygienists can con...


Increased Criminal Prosecution of Employers – Part Two – Should You Be Concerned?

September 23, 2015 05:45
by Howard Mavity
Note: This series was prompted by the DOJ’s September 9 “Yates Memo” focusing on increased executive prosecutions and renewed interest by OSHA in criminal actions. We don’t see many employee or consumer safety criminal prosecutions, but when we do see one, people of all political persuasions tend to agree with bringing down the hammer. Anyone disagree with yesterday’s announcement of groundbreaking 28 year sentence for the peanut company CEO whose actions caused ni...

Is OSHA Going to Put You in Jail?

September 13, 2015 08:17
by Howard Mavity
  The answer to my admittedly provocative question is “probably not,” but recent developments demand that employers reconsider criminal exposure under labor laws, including the OSHAct. My partner and fellow OSHA nerd, Ed Foulke and I were struck by the Region IV OSHA Administrator’s statement this week at the Georgia Safety, Health and Environmental Conference that he was the first OSHA Regional Administrator to have met with all of the US Attorneys in the states of his ...

Would You Drop to the Floor If Shooting Broke Out In Your Workplace?

August 31, 2015 12:20
by Howard Mavity
With depressing regularity, we receive calls asking for guidance in evaluating and responding to potential workplace violence threats.  The threats are rarely serious but in this era, one can never ignore concerns.  There are no easy formulas to determine if a threat is genuine.  If you review the factors that may indicate that someone is ripe for workplace violence, you may decide that you fit the bill about mid-morning on a bad Monday.  I’ve written about the signs ...

New OSHA Directive to Assist in Early Resolution of Whistleblower Complaints

August 26, 2015 03:58
by Ed Foulke
On August 19, 2015, OSHA issued new policies and procedures (Compliance Directive: CPL 02-03-006) for applying a new process for resolving whistleblower disputes. This directive is OSHA’s attempt to institute an early resolution process. This process will be used in conjunction with a regional Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) program, as part of OSHA’s overall enforcement of whistleblower statutes. The ADR programs offer whistleblower parties opportunities to negotiate settlement...

Must Poultry Employers Comply with Terms of Letter from Heads of USDA and OSHA?

August 24, 2015 05:57
by Travis Vance
OSHA recently reminded the Poultry Industry that it has not lost interest in a multiple front attack on processors, as shown by the almost $1,000,000 in citations issued against a Midwestern processor. You should view these startling OSHA citations as part of an overall DOL strategy involving bringing actions and encouraging employees to bring ergonomic, wage-hour and other claims. In this context, senior officials of the Department of Agriculture and OSHA recently issued an unusual joint lett...

Does a Workplace Have To Be Perfect?

August 22, 2015 14:49
by Howard Mavity
I recently blogged about the debate on CEO and employee pay ratios.  I urged employers to seize the high ground and decide what their attitude is as to their “responsibility” is to their employees.  I’m a pragmatist.   I believe that in the long run, employers will prosper (and avoid the need for my services) by consciously focusing on improving their employees’ lives.  I’ve made it clear that I do not believe that employers are social wor...

OSHA Updates National Emphasis Program on Amputations

August 20, 2015 07:15
by Ed Foulke
On August 13, 2015, OSHA announced its updated National Emphasis Program (NEP) for Amputations will now include all industries that contain machinery or equipment which may cause amputations. Under the new National Emphasis Program, OSHA is using current enforcement data and statistics from the Bureau of Labor’s injury data report to assist with all site selection targeting. This new directive (CPL 03-00-019) comes on the heels of an OSHA change to its record-keeping requirements that bec...

The Quirks of Mid-Atlantic State OSHA Plans: North Carolina

August 17, 2015 02:41
by Travis Vance
While a “State-OSHA Plan” must at least meet Fed-OSHA standards, these plans often develop their own additional requirements and have widely varying enforcement and appeal processes. When Federal OSHA adopts a new regulation, such as the recently instituted requirement to report all amputations and single hospitalizations for treatment within 24 hours, the regulation became effective immediately in states where the Federal Government enforces the Occupational Safety and Health Act1....



Copyright 2007-2015 Fisher & Phillips LLP disclaimer
navbottom image