A Quick Guide on OSHA Safety Requirements

Weeding through letters of interpretation or researching OSHA standards for a quick answer can eat up precious time. This is why UASC’s safety consultants and training department wanted to provide you with a quick reference guide on our most commonly asked OSHA reporting, recording, and training questions.

Breaking Down What OSHA Wants

OSHA can be ambiguous in what they want in some cases. This is done intentionally so that workers have the most protection possible. However, there are some things that are black and white for employers to follow to help ensure the minimum requirements are being met. It’s important to ensure that your company is operating as safely as possible and our team is ready to help provide you with written health and safety plans (HASP), training, consulting, or a safety manager. In the meantime, here’s the bare minimum.

Companies are required to have a written safety program no matter what sector or industry they’re in. These help their employees work in the safest manner possible, and, per OSHA, must include the following topics:

  • Emergency Action Plan (EAP)
  • Fire Prevention Plan
  • Hazard Communication Program (HazComm)
  • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
  • Lock-out/Tag-out (LOTO)

Beyond this, established safe work practices are required for all tasks. Additional written plans or supportive documentations may be required, which depends on the task(s), duties, or environment. A professional safety consultant can easily walk you through these steps to ensure full compliance, but this is a great starting point.

Simplifying Company Safety Plans

There are also required written safety programs when they’re applicable to your company’s work environment. If your employee’s job requires them to use any of the following, then you need to have a written safety plan.

  • Respirator Program
  • Bloodborne Pathogens Plan (BBP)
  • Firearm Safety Program
  • Firearm Range Safety Program
  • Aerial Lift Program
  • Trench Safety Program
  • Permit Required Confined Spaces Program
  • Asbestos Management Plan
  • Hearing Conservation Program
  • Arc Flash Program

Maintaining Up-to-Date Training Certifications

Once the safety plans and programs are written, you now need to teach them to your employees to ensure full understanding and compliance. Some of these areas require specific training to ensure full compliance, which often comes with a required “retraining” date to ensure all employees have a refresher to maintain the information. Should you make any of your policies, even if they just had the training a few weeks ago, then a new training session needs to happen to ensure complete compliance. Many companies choose to hire a third party instructor to deliver the content to their employees so that it’s coming from an outside source who has experience with OSHA regulations and training, such as UASC.

Asbestos Cement Pipe (water/sewer)Every 5 Years
Bloodborne Pathogens (BBP)Annual
Fire Extinguisher Annual
Forklift Training (PIV or PIT) Every 3 Years
Hazardous Waste Annual
Hearing ConservationAnnual
Respirators Annual

*An OSHA 10 or 30 Hour course does not satisfy job-specific training as it is simply an overview and not specific to job tasks. Looking to fulfill your training needs? Visit our calendar full of upcoming public courses, or check out our online and private course catalogs.

In addition to written safety manuals/policies and job specific training, inspections play a key part in keeping a worker safe. These inspections need to happen prior to each use with proper documentation, showing it’s been completed and the condition of the item is noted. OSHA requires the following items to always be routinely inspected and removed from service if they’re deemed damaged in any way.

Routine Inspections

Chains and SlingsFire Extinguishers
Electrical GFCIMachine Guard
Emergency Detection
(lights, alarms, monitors, etc.)
Emergency Supplies
(First Aid, AED, eyewash, etc.)
Personal Arrest Fall ProtectionVehicles and Equipment

OSHA Assistance and Resources

These lists are provided as a courtesy to help understand what is required of companies per OSHA and OSHA may change their requirements at any time; thus, it is always important to have a safety consultant on hand to ensure complete compliance. Please feel free to reach out to us with any questions you may have regarding your safety manuals, policies, training, or inspections by visiting our website or giving us a call (774-302-4305). Providing a safe work environment ensure your employees go home to their families each day.