OSHA Updates: What’s New & What’s Coming

OSHA Updates: What’s New & What’s Coming

Last updated on July 22nd, 2022

Even though summer has started, OSHA never takes a vacation. Here are a few highlights of Federal OSHA activities you may want to keep on your radar.

OSHA’s Heat Illness National Emphasis Program (NEP)

Federal OSHA’s Heat Illness NEP is leading the way to prevent heat-related illnesses and injuries at work.  On days when the heat index is 80 degrees F or higher, Federal OSHA intends to do field inspections; ask employers about heat hazard prevention programs; and assess the potential for heat-related illnesses and injuries. It will prioritize inspections for complaints and employer-reported hospitalization for heat hazards, while also conducting random inspections of employers in 70 high-risk industries on days when a heat warning or advisory is issued.

To protect your employees from heat-related dangers, educate them about heat-related illnesses; provide rest breaks, shade, and cold drinking water; and develop a heat illness prevention plan. Indoors, make sure cooling fans, air conditioning, and adequate ventilation is available. If you’re interested in doing more or learning more, here are some OSHA resources to help you get started.

OSHA starts process to update rules for occupational lead exposure.

According to recent research, adverse health effects from lead exposure can occur at lower blood levels than recognized in OSHA’s lead standards. Recognizing this, OSHA published an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to revise the standards and is seeking public input to help prevent harmful health effects in workers exposed to lead. The public is invited to comment on blood lead level triggers for medical removal protection; medical surveillance provisions; exposure limits; and provisions for personal protective equipment, housekeeping, hygiene, and training. Submit comments online by August 29, 2022 (refer to Docket No. OSHA-2018-0004). 

Proposed recordkeeping rule has state support.

OSHA’s proposed reporting rule for injury and illness has the support of 17 state Attorneys General. The proposed rule would require certain high-hazard industry establishments to electronically submit more information from Log of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses plus Injury and Illness Incident Reports annually and to include company name on submissions. The Attorneys General believe this will help employees and consumers take workplace safety into consideration when deciding where to work and what to buy, while empowering states to target enforcement. They are also encouraging that the proposed rule cover all workers (not just employees). If you have some thoughts about this matter, now’s your chance to be heard. Submit comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal.

While you’re working hard to keep your employees, customers, and the public safe and healthy, you can depend on RBT CPAs to ensure your audits, financial statements, taxes, and more are healthy and beyond scrutiny. What’s more, our Human Resources Services division is available to assist you with all employee-related matters, including OSHA. To find out more about what we can do for you, give us a call today.