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What is the top OSHA violation?

Many employees work in environments that cause workers to encounter many dangers and risks. For example, construction workers often work at great heights or with tools or machinery that could cause serious injuries or even death. Because of this, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has implemented safety regulations. However, despite their efforts to enforce safety, violations still commonly occur.

During the fiscal year of 2014, fall protection topped the list of OSHA violations, resulting in nearly $20 million in penalties across all industries in the nation. The construction industry received most of OSHA's scrutiny, for good reason. According to reports, in 2013 falls were the leading cause of worker's deaths at construction sites. In fact, 294 fatalities out of the 796 that occurred that year took place at construction sites.

While inspections can lead to citations for failing to comply with safety concerns regarding fall protection, non-compliance or failing to take remedial action could still lead to injured workers or even fatalities. It is important that construction workers and employers are familiar with the standards regarding fall protection. In addition, providing adequate training and up-to-date safety equipment could help ensure compliance.

Despite the efforts to raise awareness of this OSHA violation, fall protection violations still occur. Additionally, this leads to workplace injuries causing serious and even fatal injuries. Those harmed in a workplace accident due to faulty or lack of fall protection should understand their rights regarding the situation. Workers' compensation could be available for workers harmed on-the-job. This could help cover expenses related to medical bills, rehabilitation and lost wages.

Source:, "Top OSHA Violations: Fall protection," Jan. 5, 2015

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