Protecting the health and safety of the U.S. workforce has improved over the years, but as recently as 2016, the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) reports that over 5,190 workers still died on the job. This is a dramatic improvement from the estimated 14,000 workers killed on the job each year before the creation of OSHA back in 1971, but a 7 percent increase from the 4,836 fatal injuries reported the year before.

Tragically, in addition to fatal injuries, millions of workers are injured on the job each year. Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing “safe and healthful working conditions” for their employees. To help prevent occupational injuries, illnesses and fatalities, there are a number of OSHA regulations that are enforced by the agency.

To help improve workplace safety, OSHA recently released its list of the 10 most frequently cited safety and health violations for the 2018 fiscal year. The preliminary list includes: 

1. Fall Protection – General Requirements (7,720 violations)

2. Hazard Communication (4,552 violations)

3. Scaffolds – General Requirements (3,336 violations)

4. Respiratory Protection (3,118 violations)

5. Lockout/Tagout (2,944 violations)

6. Ladders (2,812 violations)

7. Powered Industrial Trucks (2,294 violations)

8. Fall Protection – Training Requirements (1,982 violations)

9. Machine Guarding (1,972 violations)

10. Personal Protection and Lifesaving Equipment – Eye and Face Protection (1,536 violations)

“Employers that fail to protect their workers are not only putting people’s health and safety at risk, but also risking fines. Companies and institutions that don’t meet OSHA regulations can be subject to costly noncompliance fines,” said Zahid Iqbal, MPH, CIH and Technical Director at Clark Seif Clark. “These fines can be in the tens of thousands of dollars. To help in these efforts, our staff of industrial hygiene professionals are available to assist with developing, training, implementing, managing, and assessing occupational health and safety programs. These services create a culture of workplace safety that has been shown to improve morale, reduce costs and raise productivity.”

CSC also recently sponsored an educational video discussing OSHA’s Top 10 Citations for 2018 that can be seen here.