Since 1970, OSHA safety and health regulations have aimed to make the jobsite safer for construction workers everywhere
There are more OSHA regulations than the average construction worker, foreman, or owner could ever possibly memorize, but here are several that stand out due to their everyday-relevance, their importance, and their impact on the health and wellness of the worker. From this list, keep in mind that there are countless other regulations that are important and should be understood fully to ensure employee safety on the job.
- OSHA 1926.0501 – Duty to have fall protection: When looking at the construction industry as a whole, this is the most common citation issued by OSHA. More than 7,000 citations were issued during 2014 – representing over $20 million in fines levied on construction companies across the US. This is an incredibly high number when you consider that the entire construction industry received $61 million in OSHA-related fines for the year. Of the 794 total deaths in the construction field in 2014, 294 of them were from falls. This accounts for nearly 37% of the total death rate, and is an indicator that this regulation is absolutely crucial to abide by.
- OSHA 1926.1053 – Ladder safety: It is no surprise that ladders are one of the most dangerous pieces of equipment that can be used on the job site today. Improper ladder use can result in dangerous or deadly falls, and ladders that are placed within reach of electrical wires or power lines can pose a deadly electrocution risk for construction workers who fail to use a ladder properly. More than $4 million in fines was delivered to construction companies during the year 2014 – representing about 7% of the total penalties issued by OSHA. Ladder safety is of paramount importance for any type of construction company.
- OSHA 1926.0503 – Training Requirements: The requirements are simple – construction industry employees must be trained on how to properly use the entire range of equipment they may encounter. They must also understand and execute proper activities when it comes to the management and handling of dangerous or hazardous materials. Employees must use proper safety equipment, keep ladder safety in mind, and abide by the general job site safety guidelines as imposed by OSHA. Ten and thirty hour courses are available that will help new or existing employees understand these important safety requirements.
- OSHA 1926.1101 – Asbestos Safety: Though the incidence of violation is much lower than say, ladder safety or fall protection concerns, workers who are exposed to asbestos may place themselves in harm’s way without ever knowing it. This important OSHA regulation must be fully understood – and the only way to truly do so is to enact the services of a reputable asbestos-related organization to provide training services. While the violations are fewer than other major construction-related concerns, the penalties are severe. More than $2 million in fines was levied last year alone for asbestos related violations.
To keep your employees safe, healthy, and productive on the job site, make sure that you partner with a leader in the construction-safety field to provide sufficient training for your valued employees. You’ll take pride in knowing that your team members are safe and happy at work, and you’ll protect your business from the devastating financial consequences of non-compliance with OSHA regulations.