Keeping Up With OSHA Requirements for Manufacturers

Established in 1971, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) sets and enforces standards for all employers, regardless of the industry, to provide a safe work environment for their employees. From a business perspective, OSHA requirements can seem burdensome. But staying up to date with OSHA standards isn’t optional and failing to do so can land you in hot water.

OSHA keeps records not only of the most frequently cited standards overall, but also within particular industries. The most recent statistics from OSHA revealed the top 10 standards cited in the fiscal year 2017 for the manufacturing industry.

1. Control of Hazardous Energy (Lockout/Tagout) – Following minimum performance requirements for controlling energy from the unexpected start-up of machines or equipment.

2. General Requirements for All Machines – Providing proper machine guarding to protect the operator and other employees from hazards.

3. Process Safety Management of Highly Hazardous Chemicals – Preventing or minimizing the consequences of catastrophic releases of toxic, reactive, flammable or explosive chemicals that may result in toxic, fire or explosion hazards.

4. Hazard Communication – Properly transmitting information on chemical hazards through a comprehensive program, container labeling, SDS and training.

5. Mechanical Power-transmission Apparatus – Following the general requirements on the use of power-transmission belts and the maintenance of the equipment.

6. Powered Industrial Trucks – Ensuring safety of employees on powered industrial trucks through fire protection, design, maintenance and proper use.

7. Wiring Methods, Components and Equipment for General Use – Using proper wiring techniques and equipment to ensure safe electrical continuity.

8. Respiratory Protection– Properly administering a respiratory protection program, selecting correct respirators, completing medical evaluations to determine which employees are required to use respirators and providing tight-fitting equipment.

9. General Electrical Requirements – Ensuring electric equipment is free from recognized hazards likely to cause death or serious physical harm to employees.

10. Grain Handling Facilities – Taking proper measures to prevent grain dust fires and explosions by having safety programs in place for quick response and control.

OSHA publishes their list to alert employers about these commonly cited standards so that you can take steps to find and fix recognized hazards addressed in these and other standards. By being proactive, you’ll not only keep your workers safer, but you’ll avoid costly fines and penalties that can really hurt your business moving forward.