As a small business owner or manager, you know that OSHA compliance is essential. It’s the law. But did you know there are different categories of OSHA regulations? Which ones apply to your business and your employees? Do you know what the consequences are for not complying with these standards? It’s not just about meeting the letter of the law. When it comes to safety, there is also substance behind the rules. To ensure that everyone remains safe while working for your company, read on to find out more about OSHA regulations, site safety training requirements, and why it’s so important.
What is OSHA?
OSHA stands for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. It is responsible for inspecting workplaces around the country to ensure that employees operate safely. This organization has been around since 1971, although the regulation of safety in the workplace goes back even further.
Employment and Training Requirements
Employers must comply with all OSHA regulations pertaining to the workplace environment. Most of these regulations pertain to safety, but there are some that also relate to cleanliness. When it comes to safety, employers must provide employees with the necessary training they need to do their jobs safely. Certain job categories are subject to additional training requirements. All employers must follow these rules. While it is possible to be fined for not following these regulations, it is much more likely that an employee will be hurt or killed because of unsafe work conditions.
Health and Safety Regulations
There are a number of OSHA regulations that pertain to health and safety. Most of these regulations deal with ensuring that proper safety equipment is used in the workplace. For example, employees must wear hard hats when operating heavy machinery and eye protection when operating welding equipment. Other regulations pertain to the cleanliness of the work environment. Examples of these include keeping work areas free of debris and limiting the presence of rodents and insects.
Penalties for Non-Compliance
If you are found in violation of OSHA regulations, you could be fined. The amount of the fine will be determined by the inspector. Keep in mind that this is just the initial fine. If you fail to correct the violation within the given time frame, you will be fined again. Depending on the type of violation and how many times you’ve been cited for it, the fines can add up quickly. Keep in mind that the fines are not the only costs associated with non-compliance. You may also be required to correct the violation. This could come with an additional cost.
Company Culture of Safety
In addition to following OSHA regulations, it is important to have a company culture that promotes safety. If employees understand the importance of keeping themselves and their co-workers safe, they are more likely to do so. This can be accomplished by having regular safety meetings and encouraging employees to report any unsafe conditions they see. In fact, the best way to ensure that a company culture embraces safety is to hold employees accountable for it. Make sure everyone knows that it’s not just something you talk about, but something everyone does.
Safety should be a priority at all businesses, but especially at those that rely on manual labor. Employers must comply with all OSHA regulations, provide employees with the necessary training, and create a company culture that promotes safety. While it may seem like an impossible feat, meeting these three goals will help keep both your employees and your business safe and sound.