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DOL’s Strategic Plan with OSHA – Highlights from Chat

I just finished listening to the live chat regarding the DOL’s strategic plan with OSHA. It was very interesting to listen to and read the submitted questions regarding the strategic plan, as well as hear the response to those questions.

Did you miss the event? Here are some of the highlights:

  • The Compliance Staff will increase by 110 people (training will take 1-2 years before these members will be able to do independent field inspections.
  • OSHA plans to do 40,000 inspections this year
  • There will be increased focus on industrial hygiene (especially within noise and hearing loss)
  • OSHA does not have jurisdiction in transportation (in response to the concern that 40% of all workplace fatalities occurred in transportation)
  • The Voluntary Protection Plan (VPP) will lose funding. The House Education and Labor Committee is looking at ways to keep the program running and are considering a fee based system.
  • OSHA will be changing the penalty calculator soon to have increased dollars associated with fines
  • The National Emphasis Program will present inspection findings violations, and types of hazards
  • There are 27 states with state run plans. There is no plan to take back safety and health responsibility from states meeting their obligation.
  • The DOL’s Strategic Plan with OSHA is only looking at general goals.  Although ergonomics is not specifically in this plan, OSHA will be looking at ways to help employers look at all work hazards including ergonomics. According to David Michaels “OSHA’s field staff will be looking for ergonomic hazards in their inspection and we {OSHA} will be providing them with the support and back-up they need to enforce under the general duty clause.  In addition we will be examining employer logs to see if MDS’s are accurately reported”.

So that is the chat in a nut shell. To view the entire chat click here.

What do you think? Is OSHA on the right track?

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