OSHA Targets Warehouses, Distribution, and Retail with New NEP

Posted on 7/14/2023 by Nick Waldron

On July 13, OSHA announced the same-day launch of their latest National Emphasis Program (NEP)—a program meant to address workplace hazards in warehouses, package processing facilities, distribution centers, and high-risk retail establishments.

Workers in these industries have experienced up to twice the rate of injury and illness over the last 10 years when compared to private industry overall, OSHA says.

Focus and Scope

The goal of this three-year program, per OSHA, is to “lead to permanent change in workplace safety.”

Safety inspections under the program will focus on:

  • Powered industrial vehicle operations,
  • Material handling and storage,
  • Walking and working surfaces,
  • Means of egress, and
  • Fire protection

While inspections of retail establishments will focus more on storage and loading areas, OSHA inspectors maintain the authority to expand the inspection to include other areas where evidence provides reason.

Finally, heat and ergonomic hazards are covered by this NEP, and OSHA may conduct health inspections if these hazards are present in a workplace. 

Who will be inspected?

OSHA will select establishments from two lists.

  1. Establishments with industry codes covered under this emphasis program.
    • List one covered NAICS codes:

  2. Retail establishments with the highest rates of injuries and illnesses resulting in days away, restricted duty, or job transfer.
    • List two covered NAICS codes:

Online Training for Forklift Drivers, Package Handlers, and Others

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Check out for a full range of convenient online safety training that includes Lion Membership for ongoing regulatory compliance support.

Tags: osha, OSHA inspection, retail, warehouse

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