BREAKING NEWS: OSHA announces inspection changes

The federal agency confirmed a new planning and measurement system would come into effect.

BREAKING NEWS: OSHA announces inspection changes
Occupational Safety and Health Association announced today that it would be changing the way it measures and plans for workplace inspections.

“OSHA is changing the way it plans for and measures inspections, giving greater weight to those that require more time and resources,” Dr. David Michaels confirmed.

“The new inspection protocol will help us plan for and measure our inspections to improve the protections of workers, regardless of the complexity of their work environment,” continued the assistant secretary of labor. “As of today, we are giving added weight to the most demanding and complex inspections by introducing a new measurement: the Enforcement Unit.”

The Enforcement Unit
According to Michaels, the new Enforcement Weighting System will see routine inspections valued as one Enforcement Unit, while more complex categories will be valued at up to eight Enforcement Units.

Process safety management inspections are valued at seven units, workplace violence inspections are three units, and inspections involving a chemical for which there is no permissible exposure limit are also three units.

“We are introducing this system to improve our strategic planning process and ensure that sufficient enforcement resources are allocated to cases that require more,” he added, explaining that the values had been determined by analysing historical data.

“OSHA has never set quotas for inspections and that will not change,” Michaels stressed.

“I have long believed that we should not merely focus on the number of inspections that we conduct but also take into account their impact on improving health and safety. Our inspections send a message, and as a result employers abate hazards not just at the establishment we inspect but at other workplaces,” he added. “This change will allow us to better focus our resources on more meaningful inspections – the ones that have the greatest impact.”

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