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This website is maintained by the Law Offices of Dean Malone, P.C., a Dallas, Texas law firm representing people across Texas for work injury cases. We have attempted to provide useful information for those harmed by work injuries.

New OSHA Rules in Effect as of January 1, 2015, with No Grace Period

Tuesday, January 13th, 2015
An example Material safety data sheet (MSDS), ...

An example Material safety data sheet (MSDS), giving instructions for handling a hazardous substance. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) has made changes to the illness and injury reporting rules, which went into effect on the first day of 2015. Employers should take note because there is no grace period for compliance with new regulations, and OSHA has said rules will be immediately enforced. Other changes are also in the works. Some details about OSHA changes follow:

  • All hospitalizations of workers due to on-the-job injuries must now be reported, whereas previously reporting was only required when there were three or more workers hospitalized.
  • Another regulatory deadline is June 1, 2015, and it is aimed at distributors and manufacturers. By mid-year, all new safety data sheets and chemical labels must conform to the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS). Old labels may still be used for shipping until December 1.
  • OSHA will conduct fewer inspections by a small margin, but companies can expect that they will pay higher fines for citations given for violations of OSHA’s health and safety rules.
  • From 2013 to 2014, there was an increase in the number of companies fined more than $100,000. OSHA also showed an increase in the number of cases deemed “egregious.”
  • In 2013 and 2014, state-plan states had approximately 50,000 workplace safety inspections.
  • There have been increasing numbers of OSHA inspections instigated by employee complaints. Last year approximately 27% of all inspections were the result of complaints; in 2013 and previous years, the percentage was between 20 and 24%. The trend is expected to continue because of OSHA’s direct outreach to workers.

Learn more about OSHA trends and changes in this ongoing series.

–Guest Contributor

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