Every year OSHA publishes their Top 10 most-cited violations by federal OSHA. They have recently released fiscal year 2019 list and all the top 10 citations accounted for 31,002 violations. (All state programs like WA L&I violations are included in this data.) Below is a summary of the top 10. Be sure to pay extra attention to these areas when doing your pre-task analysis and throughout your work day!
1. Fall Protection – General Requirements (1926.501), 7,014 violations:
This is the ninth year in a row this construction standard has had the most OSHA violations. OSHA Deputy Director for its Enforcement Directorate, Patrick Kapust, says “unprotected sides or edges, fall protection for sloped roofs, and workers not being protected from falling through a roof via structures like skylights are some primary places where employers are missing the mark.” Among those most cited: roofing contractors, masonry contractors, and commercial and home builders.
2. Hazard Communication (1910.1200), 4170 violations:
Problems that come up the most: no HAZCOM program, no worker training on HAZCOM, and lack of safety data sheets (SDSs). Employers most cited: masonry contractors, painting and wall covering contractors, machine shops, and general contractors.
3. Scaffolding (1926.451), 3,228 violations:
Where companies are going wrong: using cross-braces as scaffold access, not fully planking, scaffolds not on firm foundations, and no guardrails. Employers most cited: masonry contractors, roofing contractors and commercial builders.
4. Lockout/Tagout (1910.147), 2975 violations:
Companies cited don’t have LO/TO rules for specific machines, employees aren’t trained, there’s no periodic evaluation of the program, and LO/TO devices aren’t affixed. Among industries most cited: product manufacturing and sawmills.
5. Respiratory Protection (1910.134), 2,826 violations:
Companies aren’t providing employees with a medical evaluation before they use respirators, they don’t have a respiratory protection program, and employees don’t receive a fit test. Most cited: Auto maintenance, masonry contractors, cut stone contractors and painting and wall covering contractors.
6. Ladders (1926.1053), 2,766 violations:
Problems inspectors find most: ladders not extending at least three feet above a landing, using the wrong type of ladder, employees using the top step, and ladder structural defects. Most cited: Roofing, framing, siding and painting contractors.
7. Powered Industrial Trucks (1910.178), 2,347 violations:
Problems inspectors find most: trucks not operating in a safe manner, operators not re-evaluated every three years, no certificate of training, and trucks in unsafe condition. Most cited: warehouses, framing contractors and machine shops.
8. Fall Protection – Training Requirements (1926.503), 2,059 violations:
Inspectors find employees weren’t provided training, there’s no written certification, training is inadequate, and employees don’t retain training. Most cited: roofing, framing, siding, commercial and residential contractors.
9. Machine Guarding (1910.212), 1,987 violations:
Employers aren’t guarding points of operation, equipment isn’t anchored properly, and fan blades aren’t guarded. Most cited: machine shops and metal shops.
10. Personal Protective Equipment – Eye and Face Protection (1926.102), 1,630 violations:
Workers aren’t protected from flying parts, liquid chemicals and radiant energy (welding), and there’s no side protection for eyes. Most cited: roofing, framing, masonry and siding contractors.
However, WA L&I has three citations that did not make the federal list:
• First-Aid Training/Certification (WAC 296-155-120) – 1 person onsite at all times with a current Certificate, all crew leaders must have a valid certificate
• Accident Prevention Program (APP) (WAC 296-155-110)– Having a current written program
• Excavation, Trenching, and Shoring (WAC 296-155-655) – General Requirements
Use this knowledge to make proper plans and extra focus on these area. Remember, safety is your best tool!