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    What Type of OSHA Inspection is Conducted When There's an Immediate Death?

    As an employer, you’re responsible for providing a workplace free from recognized hazards, which complies with OSHA standards.

    What Type of OSHA Inspection is Conducted When There’s an Immediate Death?

    Vanessa Leonardo May 25, 2021

    As an employer, you’re responsible for providing a workplace free from recognized hazards, which complies with OSHA standards.

    So, if an immediate death occurs at your workplace, OSHA has the authority to conduct an inspection.

    The purpose of the inspection is to establish whether company violations of OSHA standards and regulations led to the fatality.

    This article will cover:

    what type of OSHA inspection is conducted when there’s an immediate death;

    what it entails for a business owner; and

    how you can help protect your employees from workplace injuries or fatalities.

    What Are The Different Types of OSHA Inspections?

    The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 authorizes OSHA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, to assign compliance safety and health officers to conduct workplace safety checks for various reasons.

    Most commonly, OSHA responds to:

    employee complaints;

    imminent dangers; and

    accidents that result in severe injury or death with an inspection.

    Based on the report or complaint they receive, they’re entitled to perform a workplace inspection.

    There are four types of inspections:

    Imminent Danger Inspections: this inspection occurs when OSHA receives a report that a condition of imminent danger exists at the workplace. An imminent danger condition or practice is something that could reasonably cause death or serious physical harm to employees if action isn’t taken.Fatality and Accident Inspections: also known as investigative inspections, a fatality and accident inspection is warranted when an accident at the workplace has resulted in the fatal injury or hospitalization of three or more employees. The main goal of investigative inspections is to discover the cause of the accident and establish whether any OSHA standards were violated.Employee Complaint Inspections: these inspections occur after an employee or more than one employee files a complaint with OSHA. Employees have the right to submit a complaint to OSHA if they believe that certain OSHA standards are being violated.Programmed Inspections: these are random inspections that OSHA conducts on selected workplaces that engage in hazardous work activities. The idea behind programmed inspections is to reduce the hazard levels associated with these job sites and industries.

    What Type of OSHA Inspection is Conducted When There’s an Immediate Death?

    When immediate death or serious harm is likely, an imminent danger inspection takes place. However, if an immediate death has occurred, it must be reported, and a fatality inspection must take place.

    Where Serious Harm Or Death Is Likely

    Imminent danger inspections are given top priority by OSHA so that severe harm or death can be prevented.

    Employees should inform their supervisor or employer immediately if they detect, or even suspect, an imminent danger situation in the workplace.

    Suppose the employer does nothing to get rid of the danger. In that case, the employee or the supervisor is authorized to notify the nearest OSHA office and request an imminent danger inspection.

    If there is reasonable certainty that danger exists and it’s likely to cause death or physical harm immediately, then an OSHA compliance officer will attend the business premises within 24 hours.

    Where Immediate Death Has Occured 

    In cases where imminent danger is not reported to OSHA and the situation, unfortunately, leads to the death of one or more employees, then the employer must notify OSHA within eight hours of the incident occurring.

    The incident report usually brings about an immediate investigation by OSHA to establish whether or not the employer was at fault for the accident that led to the employee’s immediate death. In other words, was the employer complying with OSHA standards?

    Once the investigation is complete, the focus shifts to removing all hazards to prevent the same incident from occurring in the future.

    What Happens During The Immediate Death Investigation Inspection?

    Elements of an immediate death investigation include an opening conference, an on-site investigation, development of a report, and recommendations for prevention.

    Opening conference: before the OSHA compliance office starts with their inspection, they’ll have an opening conference with the company to discuss the reasons they are there.On-site inspection: the OSHA compliance officer will inspect the workplace conditions, collect evidence, and conduct interviews to get to the root cause of the incident that led to the immediate death. If you would feel more comfortable, you’re allowed to have an Insure Compliance team member represent you during the inspection stage.Development of a report: once the compliance officer has completed their inspection and collected sufficient evidence, the incident’s root cause can be established and must be documented in a report.Recommendations: if a violation of OSHA standards has caused the immediate death, the compliance officer will generally give the employer time to correct the violation through several recommendations to prevent the incident from occurring again.

    Source : insurecompliance.net

    The 6 priorities of an OSHA inspection

    The 6 priorities of an OSHA inspection - Learn More at Vector Solutions where we are making companies safer, smarter, and better.

    The 6 priorities of an OSHA inspection

    March 30, 2016

    Resource: BlogIndustry: All IndustriesTags: Vector EHS Management

    In order to effectively enforce safety and health requirements in the workplace, the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) will periodically conduct inspections at employer sites. With an estimated 7 million worksites to cover, OSHA prioritizes its inspections based on immediate danger situations, severe injuries, worker complaints, referrals, targeted inspections, and follow-up inspections.

    Most of the time OSHA will conduct these inspections without advanced notice in an effort to gain the most accurate insight into worker safety. If your worksite becomes subject to an OSHA inspection, it's helpful to know the inspection process and what reasons may have lead OSHA there.

    No time to read?

    You can also download a comprehensive guide of everything you need to know about how OSHA conducts workplace inspections.

    DOWNLOAD GUIDE

    How does OSHA prepare for an investigation?

    Before an inspection, OSHA inspectors prepare themselves by researching the history of incidents records at the worksite and reviewing the operations and processes in place. They also acquire all the protective and testing equipment needed to make the investigation go as smoothly as possible. When they show up to the workplace, they'll present their credentials and explain why they are there.

    In certain extreme circumstances, OSHA may let a company know an inspection will be conducted 24 hours or less in advance. Many of these situations arise from the highest priorities of an OSHA inspection. Other less dire situations include simply wanting to ensure that the employer will be available should an inspection have to occur after normal business hours.

    What can lead to an OSHA investigation?

    Since there's no way for OSHA to visit every workplace, there's a list of priorities that inspectors follow to make sure they are addressing the most serious hazards. If there are hazards within a workplace that could cause death or physical harm, it's important to have them eliminated immediately, and also essential for employers to record any deaths or injuries that may have occurred.

    Should the possibility of an inspection arise, here are six main priorities OSHA investigators consider before pursuing an OSHA investigation in order of importance:

    1. Imminent Danger

    While not common, this type of inspection is conducted when immediate death or serious harm is likely at a job site. Should the OSHA inspector see that the employer's workers are in danger, they will immediately demand that all endangered employees leave the premises.

    After these hazards are addressed and removed, workers will be able to return to their jobs. However, this situation can lead to serious OSHA penalties, especially if it is a repeated or willful violation.

    2. Employee injuries, illnesses, or deaths

    According to OSHA record-keeping standards, all companies must report work-related fatalities within 8 hours, while employers must report all hospitalizations and losses of limbs or eyes within 24 hours. This incident usually prompts an immediate OSHA investigation to determine whether the employer was at fault for the accident. The outcome of this particular investigative focus is to remove all job hazards and prevent future incidents.

    3. Worker complaints

    Allegations of hazards or violations receive high priority due to worker protection rights. OSHA makes it easy and confidential for employees to report a safety complaint, and the Whistleblower Protection Act protects these workers from facing serious company retributions for reporting their concerns to OSHA.

    During an OSHA inspection, workers have the right to talk to the inspector privately. This is true of all OSHA inspections, not just ones conducted due to worker complaints.

    4. Federal, state, or local hazard referrals

    This inspection occurs at the urging of a federal, state, or local organization or agency regarding the safety of a workplace. The media could even play a part in prompting an OSHA investigation should journalists uncover a serious safety problem within an enterprise.

    5. Targeted inspections

    There are certain high-hazard or high-risk industries, such as many manufacturing sectors, where OSHA officials frequently pursue agency investigations. Many of these organizations have higher-than-average rates for illness or injury, making them a serious threat to employee safety and health.

    6. Follow-up inspections

    This inspection receives the lowest priority because they are following a previous inspection to ensure that all violations were addressed after the visit. For example, if you were found not meeting OSHA's aerial lift requirements, OSHA will eventually return for one of these inspections to ensure you have made the necessary changes.

    While the goal of these inspections is to follow up on known issues, it doesn't mean OSHA won't look for any new violations. Additionally, for certain high-risk industries or repeat violators, these follow-up inspections may receive higher priority.

    Keeping Records for an OSHA inspection

    To avoid amassing citations and fines during an OSHA inspection, you should invest in safety management software to better track your safety efforts. This will help you make sure you're following OSHA's regulations without requiring you to be hovering over everyone's shoulder.

    Source : www.vectorsolutions.com

    What type of osha inspection is conducted when immediate death or...

    What type of osha inspection is conducted when immediate death or serious harm is likely? :Complaint, Programmed, Imminent Danger, Referral

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