OSHA Citations & Violations: The General Duty Clause
OSHA violations can have a significant impact on your business. Even when specific standards do not apply to your industry, with the General Duty clause, you may still find yourself being cited for a violation of those standards. Simply put, the General Duty clause mandates all employers to supply a safe working environment for their employees. This clause is often used when there are no specific standards that apply to an alleged hazard and the employer had prior knowledge of the hazard and knowingly exposed their employees. It is recommended that you speak with a licensed and experienced OSHA violation defense attorney if you have received an OSHA citation for violation of the General Duty clause.
In addition to knowing what specific standards are applicable, it is also important for contractors to be familiar with the requirements under the General Duty clause.
OSHA must prove all of the following criteria to prove a violation of the General Duty Clause.
- OSHA must prove that a hazard that poses a threat to the safety and well-being of employees exists;
- the alleged hazard is one that is recognized by the employer or its industry;
- OSHA must prove that the alleged hazard has the potential to cause injury or death;
- OSHA must prove that the employer had the ability and was capable of addressing the hazard
How to Avoid an OSHA Violation of the General Duty Clause
With our unique experience as OSHA citation defense attorneys and defending against violations of the General Duty clause, we have the privilege of understanding how OSHA General Duty clause violations can be prevented. To prevent OSHA violations, contractors should:
- routinely review hazard warnings and ensure they are incorporated into employee safety policies and procedures;
- understand and familiarize yourself with industry specific safety standards;
- provide employee training and enforce compliance (make sure to include proper documentation).
To schedule a consultation with an OSHA citation defense attorney from Cotney Attorneys & Consultants, please call us today.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.