The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is an agency under the federal Department of Labor charged with assuring worker safety. The Administration’s mission is to assure “safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women by setting and enforcing standards and by providing training, outreach, education and assistance.” Most private employers, as well as some government employers, are covered under OSHA.
Simply put, OSHA establishes a set of rights and responsibilities for both employers and employees regarding workplace safety. Part of this duty includes establishing a series of workplace standards that all OSHA-covered employers are supposed to follow. These standards, generally based on relevant industry standards, are designed to ensure that all covered workplaces are safe for employees. OSHA periodically inspects workplaces and cites employers for violations of the standards.
According to a recent industry news report, OSHA proposed a series of 18 changes to the current standards that may go into effect later this year. The last change to OSHA standards was in 2011. Most of the changes are designed to bring current standards more in line with industry standards that may have fallen out of date as the industry evolved. Some of the changes also codify, or standardize, various standards across an industry that may be different in certain geographical areas.
Among the changes are:
- A requirement that employers implement uniform standards regarding how an employer determines if an employee’s hearing loss is “work-related,”
- Updates to lung-function tests to bring them in line with current medical standards,
- A requirement that employers ensure personal protective equipment properly fits employees and clarifications about when the equipment is necessary,
- A standardization of the required break-strength for all lanyards and lifelines throughout several industries, and
- A determination that a workplace hazard is presumed to exist in an excavation site at any time when there is loose rock or soil present.
This list represents just a few of the proposed changes. Anyone injured on the job should reach out to a dedicated Georgia workers’ compensation attorney to discuss how OSHA standards may affect their situation.
Workplace Injuries in Georgia
In Georgia, whenever a worker is injured on the job, they may be entitled to compensation through the worker’s compensation program. While worker’s compensation is a no-fault program, there are certain instances in which employer liability can be relevant to other civil proceedings above and beyond those available under the workers’ compensation program. To learn more, contact a dedicated workers’ compensation attorney.
Have You Been Injured on the Job in Atlanta?
If you or a loved one has recently been injured while on the job, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. Most private employers are covered, and if you file a timely application, benefits could begin in just a few weeks. To learn more about the workers’ compensation program, and to speak with a dedicated workers’ compensation attorney, call the attorneys at J. F. Burns Law at 404-303-7770. With nearly 15 years of experience representing injured workers, we know what it takes to pursue the benefits you need and deserve. We handle cases throughout the Atlanta area.