OSHA’s Guidance on Recording Cases of COVID-19

Please note: the article below is based on an OSHA guidance published on April 10, 2020. Since this article was written, OSHA has published a new, revised guidance covering recording COVID-19 cases. The older guidance is still currently in effect, but the second, but on May 26, 2020, the earlier guidance will be rescinded and the new guidance will be in effect. You can read the new, revised guidance here, and we’ll update the article below on May 26, 2020. The two primary differences are that in the new guidance, all industries are treated the same (so there are no different, more stringent sets of rules for healthcare, emergency response, and correctional facilities) and the rules for determining if an infection was likely to be work-related or not are more articulated. 

OSHA’s published a guidance on recording cases of COVID-19 infections for employers. You can read the entire guidance, and we recommend that you do that, but we’ve also summarized it for you below.

In addition, you might also want to check out the following from OSHA on COVID-19:

Beyond that, you might want to read our short article on 4 OSHA Training Requirements for COVID-19 and/or our much longer article about OSHA Safety Training Compliance & COVID-19.

But now let’s get into the details of OSHA’s guidance on recording COVID-19 infections. And if you scroll down to the very bottom, you’ll see we’ve included a free guide to OSHA Recordkeeping & Reporting you can download as well (the guide does not have this information specific to COVID-19, however).
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OSHA Offers Helpful Resource for Wearing Respirators Safely at Work

OSHA’s been creating a lot of helpful materials related to workplace safety and COVID-19, and they recently created some materials to help workers wear respirators correctly to preserve their safety.

One of those new OSHA resources is this OSHA Poster titled Seven Steps to Correctly Wear a Respirator at Work. Another is this OSHA Video titled Putting On and Taking Off a Mask.

Additionally, there are a lot of guidances at the OSHA COVID-19 Safety and Health Topic webpage regarding respirators at work that you should check out (in particular, check out the Enforcement Memoranda).

On top of all that, you might also want to check out the following, more general materials from OSHA on COVID-19:

And before you leave, you might want to read our short article on 4 OSHA Training Requirements for COVID-19 and/or our much longer article about OSHA Safety Training Compliance & COVID-19.

Stay safe, friends!

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OSHA’s Guidance for the Package-Delivery Workforce & COVID-19

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If you’re a safety professional or worker in the package-delivery industry, and you haven’t yet seen this, OSHA published a guidance for COVID-19 and the package delivery workforce. Do yourself a favor and check it out.

In addition, you might also want to check out the following from OSHA on COVID-19:

Beyond that, you might want to read our short article on 4 OSHA Training Requirements for COVID-19 and/or our much longer article about OSHA Safety Training Compliance & COVID-19.

Please use the comments to share any experiences, insights, suggestions, or cautions you may have. And stay safe and healthy!

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OSHA’s Guidance for the Construction Industry Workforce & COVID-19

If you’re a safety professional in the construction industry, and you haven’t yet seen this, OSHA published a guidance for COVID-19 and the construction industry workforce. Do yourself a favor and check it out.

In addition, you might also want to check out the following from OSHA on COVID-19:

In addition, you might want to read our short article on 4 OSHA Training Requirements for COVID-19 and/or our much longer article about OSHA Safety Training Compliance & COVID-19.

Please use the comments to share any experiences, insights, suggestions, or cautions you may have. And stay safe and healthy!

And be sure to download our free guide to OSHA Construction Compliance while you’re here. 

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Guide to OSHA Construction Industry Compliance

Get some helpful tips for complying with OSHA’s requirements for employers in the construction industry. Remember, all workplaces have unique hazards and compliance requirements and this guide can’t guarantee compliance for all workplaces.

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OSHA’s Guidance for COVID-19 and the Manufacturing Industry Workforce

If you’re a safety professional in the manufacturing industry, and you haven’t yet seen this, OSHA published a guidance for COVID-19 and the manufacturing industry workforce. Do yourself a favor and check it out.

In addition, you might also want to check out the following from OSHA on COVID-19:

In addition, you might want to read our short article on 4 OSHA Training Requirements for COVID-19 and/or our much longer article about OSHA Safety Training Compliance & COVID-19.

Please use the comments to share any experiences, insights, suggestions, or cautions you may have. And stay safe and healthy!

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4 OSHA Training Requirements for COVID-19

We’ll start this article with two quick reminders: (1) in the middle of the current COVID-19 pandemic, things are changing quickly and (2) we wrote this article on Wednesday, May 13, 2020. So be sure to check OSHA’s website dedicated to COVID-19 frequently for updates.

On April 13, 2020, OSHA released a guidance called Interim Enforcement Response Plan for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). We recommend you read the whole thing and make yourself familiar with the OSHA COVID-19 Safety and Health Topic page in general.

In this article, we’ll list out the four requirements for safety training related to COVID-19 mentioned in the guidance. As always, since this is a novel virus, we’re still learning about it, and things are changing quickly, keep checking in with OSHA and other credible, reliable sources to stay up-to-date on these issues.

In addition to this article, you might also want to check out our much longer, more comprehensive article looking at a range of issues related to OSHA compliance, safety training, and COVID-19 or the recent discussion on similar issues we had on the ASSP podcast channel.

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Preventive Maintenance to Improve Safety, Quality & Efficiency

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Maintenance programs in general, and preventive maintenance programs in particular, have obvious benefits in terms of keeping equipment running properly and preventing downtime. This brings an equally obvious benefit to operational efficiency and it decreases costs and waste as well.

But these aren’t the only benefits that come with a well-designed preventive maintenance program. If you’re practicing preventive maintenance at your facility instead of simply relying on reactive maintenance, you’ll see safety and quality improvements as well.

We’ll explain the benefits to efficiency, safety, and quality you’ll gain from practicing preventive maintenance further in this brief article.

Let us know if you need any help with the maintenance training at your facility as you try to improve your maintenance program and perhaps begin practice preventive maintenance yourself.

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Catch Us on ASSP Podcast Channel Talking Safety Training, OSHA Compliance & COVID-19

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Our friends at the ASSP and ASSP Podcast Channel asked us over to discuss some things related to safety training, OSHA compliance, and the current COVID-19 epidemic.

You can listen to the podcast episode here.

The discussion is based in part on our recent OSHA, Safety Training & COVID-19 article.

The very day of the discussion, OSHA released a new guidance that dealt with safety training and OSHA enforcement discretion. We didn’t know about the new OSHA guidance when we were recording the podcast episode, but we passed along relevant links to the ASSP afterwards and they’ve posted them at their site. Plus, we’ve included that new information in our article on OSHA & Safety Training linked above.

Let us know if you’ve got any questions, and be safe, friends!

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Free OSHA General Industry Compliance Guide Download

Download this free guide to assist with meeting your organization’s OSHA general industry compliance requirements.

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OSHA, Safety Training, and COVID-19

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Two quick notes: Since we originally wrote this article, Vector Solutions (the parent company of Convergence Training) created free online COVID-19 training courses for people to watch. You can view them here.  Also, since we published this article, OSHA has released an update on Safety Training Requirements for COVID-19…please check that link you just passed for our explanation on OSHA’s requirements. 

The COVID-19 pandemic has created many changes in society and at work. For those companies that are still operating, and for those employees who are still working, safety training and in particular mandatory, compliance-based safety training, is a serious consideration.

What’s the best way to complete mandatory safety training, and stay in compliance with OSHA requirements, during this pandemic? In particular, how to do this and still maintain the social distancing requirements of six feet personal separation? And, given the novel status of the COVID-19 virus, the fact that we’re still learning about COVID-19 and transmission routes, and increasing concern and evidence that the virus may be aerosolized and people could possibly be infected by an infected (but asymptomatic) person who is simply talking or breathing, is six feet of separation enough? Is face-to-face safety training a good idea or is it, perhaps, in some way counter to the goal of safety and health during a pandemic?

Can online safety training be used to avoid face-to-face compliance-based safety training or minimize it during the pandemic?

We’ll try to cover these issues in this article, explain what we know about OSHA’s current safety training requirements, and give you some tips for integrating online safety training into your safety training program while still staying in compliance with OSHA regulations in this article.

We wish you all good health and safety during a difficult time. Please feel free to use the comments section to share any tips or information you may have on these topics.

We encourage you to read teh article below, but you might want to know that our own Jeffrey Dalto, a member of the ASSP Z490 committee and a contributor to the ANSI/ASSP Z49.2 national standard for online EHS training, recently talked about OSHA Safety Training Compliance and COVID-19 for the ASSP podcast channel.

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OSHA Releases New COVID-19 Guidance: Discretion in Enforcement when Considering an Employer’s Good Faith Efforts During the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Pandemic

On April 16, 2020, OSHA released yet another new guidance related to COVID-19. This one is titled Discretion in Enforcement when Considering an Employer’s Good Faith Efforts During the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Pandemic.

We’re going to encourage you to read the entire guidance, but the excerpt below shows OSHA is giving their field officers discretion on enforcement of violations during an inspection if the employer shows evidence of “good faith efforts to comply.”

During the course of an inspection, OSHA Area Offices will assess an employer’s efforts to comply with standards that require annual or recurring audits, reviews, training, or assessments (see Annex below for some examples).  Compliance Safety and Health Officers (CSHOs) should evaluate whether the employer made good faith efforts to comply with applicable OSHA standards and, in situations where compliance was not possible, to ensure that employees were not exposed to hazards from tasks, processes, or equipment for which they were not prepared or trained.  As part of assessing whether an employer engaged in good faith compliance efforts,  CSHOs should evaluate whether the employer thoroughly explored all options to comply with the applicable standard(s) (e.g., the use of virtual training or remote communication strategies).  CSHOs should also consider any interim alternative protections implemented or provided to protect employees, such as engineering or administrative controls, and whether the employer took steps to reschedule the required annual activity as soon as possible.

The OSHA Safety and Health Topic Page for COVID-19 has become a daily must-read to keep on top of all the new stuff from OSHA re: COVID-19. You might want to bookmark it. Stay safe and healthy, friends!

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Free OSHA General Industry Compliance Guide Download

Download this free guide to assist with meeting your organization’s OSHA general industry compliance requirements.

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OSHA Releases Interim Enforcement Response Plan for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

During the COVID-19 pandemic, things seem to be changing super-quickly. That’s true in all walks of life, and it’s true if you’re trying to keep up with OSHA’s responses as well.

We’re actually a few days behind in noticing that OSHA released a new guidance related to COVID-19 on Wednesday, April 13, 2020 titled Interim Enforcement Response Plan for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).

It’s a longish one, so we’re going to leave you to read it instead of trying to summarize it, although we did touch on some part of it in our newly updated article OSHA, Safety Training & COVID-19.

Stay safe and healthy, friends!

 

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Developing a Risk-Competent Work Force

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In this discussion with Human Performance Improvement Specialist Joe Estey, we talk about risk at work and risk management in general, about the difference between being a risk-adverse organization and a risk-competent organization in particular, and Joe shares some tips for helping workers to become risk-competent.

Additionally, Joe offers some great resources to learn more, and we’ll provide links to those resources below.

Enjoy the interview in recorded discussion format below and good luck with your own efforts to create a risk-competent workforce that will assist your organizational continuous improvement efforts.

In addition to the discussion about risk-competency below, you might enjoy these earlier discussions we’ve had with Joe as well:

Enjoy the video immediately below. In a little while, we’ll offer a transcript of this discussion as well.

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