OSHA Fines Are on the Rise for the First Time in 25 Years

On November 2, 2015, Congress passed the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015. Why should you care? Well, besides keeping our country running, contained in this piece of legislation is a provision that requires OSHA to adjust their “civil money penalties.” That adjustment is to be based on inflation. All penalties proposed or assessed after August 1, 2016 will be impacted.

OSHA fines are going up, folks.

The Department of Labor will be publishing an Interim Final Rule on the new penalty levels by July 1 of this year.

Additionally, there will be annual inflationary adjustments (i.e., generally increased fine amount because when has the cost of living ever gone down?) starting January 15, 2017.

Per the OSHA Frequently Asked Questions regarding the new fines, any employers inspected before August 1, but receive a citation after August 1, will be subject to the new, higher penalties. Click here to go to the OSHA page.

Folks, this is a big deal. It’s been 25 years since the OSHA penalty structure has been adjusted. I expect the fines to be raised significantly.

Now is the time to get your house in order. You want to find out what OSHA will see BEFORE OSHA sees it. That’s where LeadSMART comes in.

We have a couple of options. At the very least, you should make sure your crews are OSHA 10 trained (click here for the class schedule). I know, I know. The time out of the field means you’re losing money. But does it really? Think about how much you could potentially pay in fines with an OSHA citation. And what happens if a worker is injured? OSHA training helps keep injuries down and workers on the job site. And, keeping your crew safe is just the right thing to do. It’s worth the effort.

The second option the new LeadSMART Job Site Inspection Program (click here!). We inspect your job site(s) for safe and not-so-safe work practices. Our Job Site Assessment Report will tell you what OSHA will see BEFORE OSHA sees it. (I know I’m repeating myself, but it’s important!) LeadSMART then helps you get your job site(s), and workers, to where they need to be. LeadSMART can even act as your part-time Safety Officer and, if it comes to that, attend OSHA hearings with you. Click here for more information on the program or call us at 888-731-5323.

Remember, we are here to help! If you have questions or would like to discuss private training sessions, call our office and speak with Ken at 888-731-LEAD (5323) or 603-842-4282.

Stay Healthy, folks.

Peter & the LeadSMART Team

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