When the Trump Administration released their Spring 2018 Unified Agenda of Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions earlier this year, they promised a few regulation rollbacks that would affect the construction industry throughout the year.
Among those rollbacks was a plan to “reconsider, revise or remove provisions of Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses, also known as the Electronic Injury Reporting and Anti-Retaliation final rule in July 2018.” Just under the wire, on July 27, OSHA has issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that would remove the requirement for companies that have 250 or more employees to submit information from OSHA Form 300 (Log of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses) and OSHA Form 301 (Injury and Illness Incident Report).
Just like smaller companies, these larger companies will now only be required to electronically submit OSHA Form 300A, which is merely a high level summary of work-related injuries and illnesses. The Department of Labor stated that the proposed change was issued in order to protect privacy and reduce burdens on employers. OSHA Forms 300 and 301 contain sensitive information about individual workers who are injured or made ill.
July 1, 2018 was supposed to be the deadline for large companies to submit the OSHA Forms 300 and 301 with 2017 data through the online system, but OSHA is not currently accepting them, pending the rule change. OSHA is, however, currently accepting OSHA Form 300A with 2017 data, though any forms submitted past July 1 will be counted as late.
The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission has announced a recall of 3 different drills manufactured by Black & Decker due to safety concerns.
Just over a year ago, in September of 2017, Hurricane Irma blew through Miami, Florida, bringing extremely high speed wind with it. The wind caused 3 cranes to collapse in southern Florida, 2 in downtown Miami and 1 more in Ft. Lauderdale. Interesting video of the dismantling of one of the failed cranes was shared on Youtube.
In September of 2017, OSHA’s new standard on exposure to respirable crystalline silica went into effect in the construction industry. The rule lowered the allowable exposure to the harmful substance to 50 micrograms per cubic meter, a measurement that we’re all familiar with [/sarcasm]. After a full year of enforcement, OSHA is considering making a change to the rule.
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Last week, we shared some newly updated Trenching and Excavation safety information from OSHA, which was part of their priority goals for 2018. Those updates included a public service announcement and updated online resources. The administration has just announced the update of their National Emphasis Program (NEP) on trenching and excavation safety, which features a period of education and prevention outreach.
Earlier this year, it was announced that reducing injuries and deaths caused by trenching and excavation collapses would be a priority goal for OSHA in 2018. The administration planned to achieve this through increased inspection rates, public service announcements (PSA), updating online resources, and creating a better public-private partnership. Recently, OSHA made good on their promise to issue PSAs and update their online resources.
In a time where many industry groups are strongly fighting against new regulations of any kind, more than 130 organizations have co-signed a petition for OSHA to establish a national standard for heat protection across many industries.
As other organizations, like the NTSB, are busy analyzing the root cause of the pedestrian bridge collapse that killed 6 people and injured 8 others in Florida in March, OSHA has finished their investigation and issued safety violations to 5 different contractors.