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OSHA Cites 10 Most Common Safety and Health Violations

Every year more than 4,500 workers are killed on the job and about three million workers are injured. In 2016, 21.4% of those fatalities were in construction. That means one out of five worker deaths were in construction.

Thomas Galassi, director of enforcement programs including OSHA, said “…we urge employers to go beyond the minimal requirements to create a culture of safety at work, which has been shown to reduce costs, raise productivity and improve morale”. In fact, OSHA estimates that just by eliminating the top four—the “fatal four”—602 worker’s lives would be saved every year.

  1. Fall Protection
  2. Hazard Communication
  3. Scaffolds
  4. Respiratory Protection
    • This is caused by breathing in asbestos, silica, or a variety of other toxic substances.
  5. Control of Hazardous Energy (Lockout/Tagout)
    • This occurs when machinery starts up suddenly while being repaired.
  6. Powered Industrial Trucks
    • With the high number of fatalities relating to forklift and powered industrial truck operations, there is a strong indication that many workers are not being properly trained to safely drive and operate this hazardous equipment.
  7. Ladders
  8. Machinery and Machine Guarding
  9. Electrical—Wiring Methods, Components and Equipment
  10. Electrical Systems Design

According to the 2017 Liberty Mutual Workplace Safety Index, serious, nonfatal workplace injuries amounted to nearly $60 billion in direct U.S. workers compensation costs. This translates into more than a billion dollars a week spent by businesses on these injuries. Because work place safety, OSHA, and worker’s compensation are such big topics and issues in today’s work, for the next few blog entries we will be covering work safety topics individually and in-depth. These will include OSHA violations and violation preventions, ergonomics, school safety, the top worker compensation claims and what can be done to prevent them, and more.


For additional information about this blog, please contact your Poms & Associates broker, or send your question to us through “Ask Poms.”

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This blog/material is provided for general information purposes only and is not a substitute for legal advice particular to your situation, and Poms & Associates, Insurance Brokers Inc. and the author expressly disclaim all liability relating to actions taken or not taken based solely on the content of this information.

The author makes every effort to offer accurate, and practical Human Resources management, employer, and workplace advice, both on this website, and linked to from this website, but he is not an attorney. The content on this site, while authoritative, is not guaranteed for accuracy and legality, and is not to be construed as legal advice. Additionally, employment laws and regulations vary from state to state and country to country, so the site cannot be definitive on all of them for your workplace.

When in doubt, always seek legal counsel or assistance from State, Federal, or International governmental resources, to make certain your legal interpretation and decisions are correct. The information on this site is for guidance, ideas, and assistance only.