Managing OSHA

Critical but practical advice for when OSHA comes knocking.

Managing OSHA

Agency News & Initiatives

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OSHA’s New Initiative to Enforce Exit Route Standards: How to Ensure that your Exit Routes are in Compliance

On June 17, 2013, in its newsletter “OSHA QuickTakes”, OSHA reported that it has issued a national memorandum on exit routes directing field inspectors to carefully examine whether employers have provided and maintained adequate exit routes from work areas. This comes in response to a massive fire and explosion at a Chinese poultry processing plant on June 4, 2013, in which an estimated 119 employees perished.  Survivors described workers struggling through smoke and flames to reach doors that turned out to be locked or blocked.

The memorandum directs compliance officers to pay particular attention to the following during an OSHA inspection: whether an adequate number of exit routes are provided, that the exit routes are free and unobstructed, and that exit doors are not locked.     

Employers can take the following internal steps to ensure the safety of their employees and that they are in compliance:

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Senate Committee to Vote on Secretary of Labor Nominee Thomas Perez May 16th, 2013 (UPDATED)

For a second time, the US Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) has postponed a vote on Secretary of Labor Nominee, Thomas Perez. The vote will be held on Thursday, May 16, 2013 at 9:15 AM. The vote had been scheduled for Wednesday, May 8, 2013, following an April 22, 2013 Committee Republican Letter to HELP Committee Chairman Tom Harkin (D-IA) requesting that the mark-up of Mr. Perez, first scheduled for April 24, be postponed due to “the number of requests for information that remain outstanding….”

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Obama Re-Nominates Attwood for OSHRC Commissioner

On March 21, 2013, President Barak Obama re-nominated Cynthia Attwood to the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission (OSHRC) in anticipation of her current term as Commissioner expiring on April 27, 2013. Ms. Attwood will need to be confirmed by the Senate in order to continue her work as an OSHRC Commissioner.

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Obama Taps Asst. Attorney General, Thomas Perez for Secretary of Labor

On March 18, 2013, President Barack Obama nominated Thomas Perez to replace former Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis, who resigned earlier this year. Mr. Perez currently serves as Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice (DOJ).

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