OSHA’S Top 10 Safety Violations in 2022
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is a federal agency of the United States Department of Labor. Established by the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, it is responsible for setting and enforcing workplace safety standards for employers and employees across the country. This article will explore the top 10 safety violations of 2022 and discuss what employers can do to avoid them.
1. Fall Protection – General Requirements
According to OSHA, fall protection – general requirements topped the list of the most frequently cited violations in 2022, with 5,260 instances cited. This isn’t entirely surprising, as falls are one of the most common causes of workplace injury and death. Employers must make sure that they have proper safety measures in place, such as guardrails, safety nets, and personal fall arrest systems, to ensure that their employees are protected from falls. Additionally, employers should provide workers with training and materials to reinforce safe practices when working at heights.
2. Hazard Communication
Hazard communication was the second most frequently cited violation in 2022, with 2,424 citations reported. The OSHA Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) requires employers to develop and implement a written hazard communication program that includes a list of hazardous materials used in the workplace, labels and other forms of warning, safety data sheets for hazardous materials, and training for employees on how to handle hazardous materials. Employers must also provide their workers with information and training on the appropriate handling and storage of hazardous chemicals and the health effects associated with exposure to such chemicals. By ensuring that their workers are properly trained and informed about hazardous materials, employers can help protect their employees from potential injuries and illnesses.
3. Respiratory Protection
Respiratory protection came in third on the OSHA list of the most frequently cited safety violations in 2022, with 2,185 citations. This is unsurprising, considering that many jobs involve workers using respirators to protect themselves from hazardous airborne materials. Employers must develop a written respiratory protection program that includes training employees on the proper use and maintenance of their respirators. They are also required to provide workers with appropriate respirator filters and cartridges depending on the environment they are working in and the type of hazard they are exposed to.
Ladders were the fourth most frequently cited safety violation by OSHA in 2022, with 2,143 citations reported. Employers must ensure that ladders are properly maintained and inspected regularly. Additionally, employers should train employees on the proper use of ladders, including the importance of keeping three points of contact with the ladder at all times. Employers should also ensure that their ladders are the appropriate size and type for the job they are being used for and that they are placed on a stable and secure surface.
Scaffolding was the fifth most frequently cited safety violation by OSHA in 2022, with 2,058 citations reported. Employers must ensure that scaffolding is appropriately constructed and inspected before use. Additionally, workers should be trained on the proper use of scaffolding, including the importance of not overloading and not using the scaffolding in a manner inconsistent with its design specifications. Employers should also provide workers with appropriate fall protection, such as guardrails or personal fall arrest systems, which are essential for protecting workers from falls when working at heights.
Lockout/tagout was the sixth most frequently cited safety violation in 2022, with 1,977 citations reported. The OSHA Lockout/Tagout Standard (LOTO) requires employers to develop and implement a written program to protect workers from the unexpected startup or release of stored energy that can occur during servicing and maintenance activities. Employers need to train workers on properly using lockout/tagout devices and ensure they are appropriately used when servicing and maintaining equipment. By following these requirements, employers can help protect their employees from potential injuries or fatalities.
7. Powered Industrial Trucks
Powered industrial trucks, commonly referred to as forklifts, were the seventh most frequently cited safety violation in 2022, with 1,749 citations reported. OSHA requires that employers ensure that their workers are appropriately trained to operate the powered industrial trucks and aware of the associated hazards. Additionally, employers must ensure that the powered industrial trucks are inspected regularly and that any necessary repairs or maintenance is performed promptly. By following these requirements, employers can help protect their workers from potential injuries or fatalities resulting from improper use of powered industrial trucks.
8. Fall Protection – Training Requirements
The eighth most frequently cited safety violation in 2022 was fall protection – training requirements, with 1,556 citations reported. Employers must provide workers with fall protection training to protect them from potential falls that can occur while working at heights. This training must include instruction on identifying the fall hazards they may be exposed to, proper use of personal fall arrest systems and guardrails, and the appropriate inspection and maintenance of fall protection equipment. Additionally, employers must ensure that their workers know the importance of following safe work practices when working at heights.
9. Personal Protective and Lifesaving Equipment – Eye and Face
The ninth most frequently cited safety violation in 2022 was personal protective and lifesaving equipment – eye and face protection, with 1,401 citations reported. OSHA requires employers to provide workers with the appropriate eye and face protection for the task. It is necessary to select the correct eye protection based on the type of hazard present, such as flying particles, liquid or chemical splashes, or harmful light radiation. Employers must also ensure that workers properly use and maintain their eye and face protection, such as cleaning and storing it safely, to help ensure their safety.
10. Machine Guarding
Machine guarding was the tenth most frequently cited safety violation in 2022, with 1,370 citations reported. According to OSHA, employers must ensure that their workers are adequately protected from hazards associated with the operation of machines and equipment, such as rotating parts, flying particles, and other hazardous motions. Employers must provide guards and other safety measures to protect workers from these hazards and ensure that these are maintained in good repair. Additionally, employers are required to train workers on the proper use of machine guards and other safety measures to help ensure their safety while working with machinery.
EMR Safety and Health provides training on all 10 of these violations. To learn more click here OSHA/Safety Training – EMR Safety and Health.