Everyone from political junkies to average citizens has an opinion on the January 2018 government shutdown, and some may have bets on its duration. However, while the government continues to flounder, the private sector economy continues to run. How does the shutdown affect OSHA and MSHA enforcement? Continue Reading What effect does the government shutdown have on OSHA and MSHA enforcement?
OSHA announced today that it will continue to accept electronic submissions of employer Form 300A illness and injury summaries through December 31st. The deadline for this first-ever electronic collection of these forms had been December 15th. Continue Reading OSHA extends acceptance of injury forms until December 31st
Today, OSHA announced a further two-week delay in the deadline for employers to submit their 2016 injury and illness data electronically to the agency. The new deadline will be December 15, 2017. That will mark the first time that employers are required to routinely submit such data under a new rule issued during the Obama administration. Continue Reading Does your business have to give OSHA injury data by December 15?
In the last few months, mine operators around the country have seen individual MSHA inspectors and districts suddenly enforce new interpretations for a number of regulations. The latest rule evolving right before our eyes in one district could have widespread effect: grounding and continuity testing. Is MSHA’s new approach justified? Continue Reading Discontinuity: A new change in MSHA enforcement with far-reaching impact
A few weeks back, MSHA announced a new “training and enforcement” initiative on “working alone,” which MSHA claimed was necessary because of five fatalities in 2017. But, I had to ask: do these incidents really have anything to do with each other or with working alone? Continue Reading Digging deep into MSHA’s working alone initiative – on solid ground?
by Mike Horowitz
For most of the last four years, OSHA has insisted that a union representative who is not your employee can participate in OSHA inspections at your work site. This spring, that changed when OSHA finally reversed this much-criticized policy. Continue Reading Who’s coming to the (OSHA) inspection party? Just folks on the inside.
In testimony before the Senate Appropriations Committee this week, Department of Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta emphasized OSHA’s future focus on compliance assistance to employers and said OSHA had abandoned Obama-era policies on “joint employers.” Continue Reading Acosta testimony emphasizes OSHA compliance assistance
Perhaps signaling that OSHA may be turning more toward cooperative and compliance assistance programs under the Trump administration, as many in industry have hoped, OSHA announced this week that it will hold a public meeting to receive suggestions from stakeholders on how to strengthen its Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP). Continue Reading Signs of turning to cooperation and compliance assistance? OSHA seeks input on VPP.
Department of Labor press releases issued during April suggest that DOL, including OSHA and MSHA, may have returned to the aggressive public relations strategy of calling out companies by name, which was utilized during the previous administration. Former head of OSHA, Dr. David Michaels, reportedly called this strategy “regulation by shaming.” Continue Reading Is the Department of Labor reverting to Obama-era media strategies?
In the recent issue of Rock Products, I look at a recent decision by the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit limiting MSHA’s jurisdiction. If you operate a shop that services mining equipment, you’ll want to take note of this case. Continue Reading Limiting MSHA’s jurisdiction: Is it connected to a working mine?