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Top 3 OSHA Violations of 2020

OSHA recently released their list of the top 10 violations of 2020. Although the order has changed, the 2020 violations report features the same 10 OSHA violations featured in the 2019 report. At EHS Management, health and safety are our top priorities. To help employers understand more about OSHA’s requirements, we’re breaking down the top 3 OSHA violations of 2020.

1. Fall Protection–General Requirements

For the tenth year in a row, fall protection – general requirements has taken lead of OSHA’s top 10 report with 5,424 total violations. It is an employer’s responsibility to provide a workplace that prevents employees from falling off overhead platforms, elevated surfaces, or into holes in flooring or walls. According to OSHA, “Fall protection [must] be provided at elevations of four feet in general industry workplaces, five feet in shipyards, six feet in the construction industry and eight feet in long-shoring operations.” Additionally, OSHA states that, “…fall protection [must] be provided when working over dangerous equipment and machinery, regardless of the fall distance.”

2. Hazard Communication

With 3,199 violations, hazard communication ranks second on OSHA’s top violations of 2020. This OSHA standard requires employers to educate their employees on all chemical identities and hazards that may be at risk. According to OSHA’s Hazard Communication Standard (HCS), manufacturers and importers of chemicals are required to evaluate all hazards of the chemicals they either produce or import, and prepare labels and safety data sheets that convey the hazards accordingly. Additionally, all employers who possess hazardous chemicals within their workplace must have labels and safety data sheets available to workers. According to OSHA, employers must also train all exposed employees to properly handle any hazardous chemicals being used.

3. Respiratory Protection

2,649 respiratory protection violations were reported by OSHA in 2020. This standard requires that employees wear protective face gear when working alongside harmful materials like gas, oil, and chemicals. Repeated exposure to these toxins can put employees at serious risk for health issues like cancer and Occupational Asthma. Protective gear, like Respirators, helps protect the working individuals by supplying them sufficient amounts of oxygen in areas or situations where limited oxygen is available.

The remaining top 7 violations included scaffolding, ladders, lockout/tagout, forklifts and powered industrial trucks, fall protection – training requirements, eye and face protection, and machine guarding. When operating a facility, there are many aspects of health and safety that must be taken into account at all times. EHS Management helps businesses organize and implement the necessary safety measures required throughout their space. Contact us today to learn how we can help keep your team and facility safe.