OSHA Requirements for Employers

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is a large regulatory agency of the US Department of Labor that inspects and examines workplaces. The main goal of this agency is to ensure the safety of employees and reduce the incidence of workplace injuries and illnesses. Therefore, in order to obtain these goals, it is necessary to define OSHA requirements for employers. According to these requirements, employers are required to take certain actions in the workplace to enhance employee safety.

If you own a business with one or more workers, you can join us to review the OSHA requirements for employers.

 

OSHA requirements for employers: Which employers are subject to these requirements?

Any business with one or more workers must comply with OSHA rules. Simply put, whoever you pay is covered by this law, except for freelancers and independent contractors. Of course, it should be noted that self-employed business owners are not included in OSHA rules.

 

OSHA’s free workplace poster

Under OSHA’s rules, the employer is required to display posters in the workplace explaining workers’ rights under the Occupational Safety and Health Act. These posters are available for free on OSHA’s official website. Employers are required to use the new version of the posters at work.

 

Hazardous substances

As an employer, you need to train your workers to identify hazardous substances in the workplace and to take the right action in the event of injury. Think of substances that might cause injury to your employee or job-related illness. Even in a typical office, hazardous substances may be found. For example, any flammable substances and substances with bleach in it are considered dangerous.

All hazardous materials have Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) prepared by the manufacturer. The manufacturer can provide you with these sheets. These sheets should be made available to employees so that they can refer to them if necessary.

 

OSHA requirements for employers: Blood-borne pathogens

Blood-borne pathogens transmit infectious diseases through the blood and other body fluids. HIV, hepatitis B, and C are among the most common blood-borne pathogens. According to OSHA’s rules, you must inform your employees of the necessary information about these diseases, protection methods against these diseases in the workplace, and first aid procedures. This training is very important for people who work in a workplace like a hospital.

 

Personal protective equipment (PPE)

In order to minimize exposure to workplace hazards in the workplace, you as an employer must provide personal protective equipment for your employees. Respirators, face protection, and protective clothing are examples of personal protective equipment. Your employees should receive training in the selection, maintenance, and proper use of this equipment.

 

OSHA requirements for employers: Employee training

Based on OSHA, you as the employer must create an emergency action plan along with an OSHA training program to train your workers in all aspects of the plan.

 

What OSHA training must include

This training content should include the following:

  • Training about hazardous substances in the workplace, how to read the MSDS, and how to act properly in the event of an incident
  • Training about blood-borne pathogens. If your work environment is such that employees are more at risk for blood-borne pathogens, you need to consider further training.
  • Education on what to do in an emergency condition
  • Training in what to do if an OSHA inspector wants to inspect your workplace

 

Providing a safe workplace is one of your most important responsibilities.

According to OSHA laws, all employers are required to provide a safe work environment for their employees:

  • The work environment should be tailored to OSHA standards and free of serious recognized hazards.
  • As an employer, you need to make sure your workers use safety equipment and tools.
  • You must use color codes, posters, and labels in the workplace to warn workers about potential hazards.
  • All workers must receive safety training in a language they can understand.
  • Medical examinations and training should be in accordance with OSHA standards.
  • Employees must be aware of their rights and responsibilities under OSHA laws.
  • As an employer, you must report any work-related inpatient hospitalizations and amputations to the nearest OSHA office. You should also keep a record of work-related injuries and illnesses.
  • Provide access to employee medical records and exposure records to employees or their authorized representatives.
  • Under the Whistleblower Protection Act, you must not discriminate against workers who have exercised their rights under this law.

 

OSHA can inspect your workplace

According to OSHA’s rules, it is possible to inspect businesses. Inspections can be unannounced or pre-scheduled. It could be a routine inspection in your area or as a result of a worker complaint. You can accompany the OSHA inspector during the inspection or have a representative be present at the inspection. Imminent danger situations, reports of severe injuries or illnesses, and worker complaints determine OSHA’s prioritization for inspection. The OSHA inspector is allowed to inspect all areas of your workplace for possible violations, not just the area of a complaint. We recommend that you take lots of photos of any complaint areas so that you can document them, as well as document any improvements you might make. Include inspection information in your staff training program.

 

OSHA requirements for employers: The Whistleblower Protection Act

Under the Whistleblower Protection Act, an employer cannot take action against the employee who has filed complaints alleging OSHA violations. Therefore, as an employer, you are not allowed to lay off, fire, reduce wages or demote an employee for engaging in protected activities. If a worker files a complaint against your business, the investigator will notify you. Then try to work with you and the employee to examine and resolve the situation.

 

OSHA’s role in combating the COVID-19 pandemic

According to OSHA’s rules, the most important task of employers is to identify sick people in the early stages of the disease to maintain both the patient’s health and reduce the likelihood of the disease spreading. A few evaluations of contact tracing for COVID-19 have been published due to lack of cooperation from the public. Therefore employers must have their own incentive to prevent from spreading the disease to fellow workers.

This article helps you better understand the key elements of OSHA about pandemics. Based on what is described in this article, employees should be properly informed on COVID-19, transmission routes, and prevention methods.

Workers with suspicious symptoms should have a COVID-19 test. If you live in Las Vegas, the Southern Nevada Occupational Health Center offers COVID-19 testing to your employees. In this center, you can get reliable and accurate results in the shortest time.

 

OSHA’s new guidelines on COVID-19 vaccination

OSHA does not currently mandate staff vaccinations but encourages employers to provide vaccines available at no cost to eligible workers or at least provide adequate training materials on the benefits and safety of vaccinations.

The important tip to know is that despite vaccinations, your employees are required to wear masks, remain physically distant, and regularly wash or disinfect their hands.

 

Let’s sum up …

As it turned out, all of OSHA’s laws are in the interest of ensuring the safety of workers in the workplace. Increasing workers ‘safety means reducing occupational injuries, increasing productivity and workers’ commitment. Therefore, you, as an employer, will get significant benefits from implementing these rules.

The Southern Nevada Occupational Health Center offers a variety of tests and examinations to workers and employers under OSHA standards. The purpose of these examinations is to prevent and diagnosis of imminent work-related injuries.

For more information about the services of this center, you can refer to the menu at the top of the page or schedule an online appointment.

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