Search

OSHA Raises Penalties for Safety Violations

Posted on 1/14/2021 by Roger Marks

OSHA increased its civil penalties for violations of 29 CFR workplace safety Standards, effective January 15, 2021.

For willful and repeat violations, the maximum civil penalty increased to $136,532.

For serious violations, other-than-serious violations, failure to abate hazards, and violations of OSHA information posting requirements, the max civil penalty increased to $13,653.

The minimum penalty for a willful violation increased to $9,753

See OSHA's announcement in the Federal Register

Top 10 Most-cited OSHA Violations

While OSHA’s annual Top 10 most-cited violations list is not yet available for fiscal year 2020, the list does not change much from year to year.

The most recent Top 10 list features the five most commonly cited safety Standards that apply to general industry facilities.

Hazard Communication

Employers must communicate chemical hazards using written HazCom programs, hazard labels/warnings, Safety Data Sheets, and employee HazCom training. Failure to provide and document employee hazard communication training is among the most-commonly-cited violations of this Standard every year.

Since it was updated in 2012 to adopt elements of the Globally Harmonized System for Classifying and Labeling Chemicals, the Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) has consistently ranked among the top three most common OSHA citations.

Lockout/Tagout

According to OSHA, failure to control “hazardous energy” accounts for a significant percentage of industrial accidents. When energy is released during maintenance or servicing of machinery, employees can be badly injured and even killed.

Following a worker’s accidental death, a metal stamping plant in Alabama agreed to pay $1,500,000 earlier this year to settle allegations that the company allowed workers to ignore OSHA safety Standards.

OSHA requires lockout/tagout training for employees as part of a workplace program of energy control procedures.

Respiratory Protection

An OSHA Standard that’s taken on extra importance during the COVID-19 public health crisis is Respiratory Protection (29 CFR 1910.134). Common violations of this Standard include failure to maintain a written respiratory protection program and failure to provide required training and annual re-training for employees.

Check out our November 2020 COVID-19 Enforcement Report for details about employer violations related to the pandemic.

Forklifts/Powered Industrial Trucks (PITs)

Failure to train, certify, or re-certify forklift drivers is typically the most-cited violation of OSHA’s forklift Standard at 29 CFR 1910.178.

No employee may operate a forklift until he or she has been trained to safely operate it. The Forklift Safety Online Course is designed to help satisfy OSHA’s training standard for forklift operators at 29 CFR 1910.178(l).

Machine Guarding

OSHA requires employers to identify and guard workplace machinery that can cause injury to employees. Machine injuries can occur at the point of operation, from rotating or moving parts, or from flying chips or sparks.

Read more: Protecting Workers from Machine Injuries
Read more: Machine Guarding vs. Lockout/Tagout  

Violations common to the construction industry round out OSHA’s annual top 10 list: Fall protection, personal protective equipment, eye and face protection, ladders, and scaffolding. OSHA safety regulations for the construction industry are found in 29 CFR Part 1926.

Protect Employees and Avoid Common Safety Violations

Check out Lion.com/OSHA to find safety training to inform and protect your workforce. From 10-hour training for general industry workers to HazCom, HAZWOPER, and more, Lion offers courses that are informative and easy-to-use. 

Our OSHA course catalog includes training to help employees protect themselves from many of the most common workplace hazards in general industry, including: 

Hazard Communication 
Respiratory Protection 
Forklift Safety
Lockout/Tagout 

Browse all online safety training at Lion.com/OSHA.

Tags: fines and penalties, osha

Find a Post

Compliance Archives

Lion - Quotes

I chose Lion's online webinar because it is simple, effective, and easily accessible.

Jeremy Bost

Environmental Health & Safety Technician

The instructor was energetic and made learning fun compared to dry instructors from other training providers.

Andy D’Amato

International Trade Compliance Manager

The course was very informative and presented in a way that was easily understood and remembered. I would recommend this course.

Jeffrey Tierno

Hazmat Shipping Professional

This course went above my expectations from the moment I walked in the door. The instructor led us through two days packed with useful compliance information.

Rachel Stewart

Environmental Manager

This is a very informative training compared to others. It covers everything I expect to learn and even a lot of new things.

Quatama Jackson

Waste Management Professional

Lion's training was by far the best online RCRA training I've ever taken. It was challenging and the layout was great!

Paul Harbison

Hazardous Waste Professional

I was able to present my scenario to the instructor and worked thru the regulations together. In the past, I attended another training firm's classes. Now, I have no intention of leaving Lion!

Diana Joyner

Senior Environmental Engineer

Lion Technology workshops are amazing!! You always learn so much, and the instructors are fantastic.

Dorothy Rurak

Environmental Specialist

Convenient; I can train when I want, where I want.

Barry Cook

Hazmat Shipping Professional

Very well structured, comprehensive, and comparable to live training seminars I've participated in previously. I will recommend the online course to other colleagues with training requirement needs.

Neil Luciano

EHS Manager

Download Our Latest Whitepaper

Spot and correct 4 of the most common universal waste errors before they result in a notice of violation during a Federal or state inspection.

Latest Whitepaper

By submitting your phone number, you agree to receive recurring marketing and training text messages. Consent to receive text messages is not required for any purchases. Text STOP at any time to cancel. Message and data rates may apply. View our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.