OSHA stands for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. This is a governmental department whose aim is to provide, regulate, and enforce safety and health standards in various workplace settings. In most cases, if an employee has any complaints or concerns regarding workplace safety, they will need to file a complaint with OSHA. This can lead to an investigation by OSHA agents, as well as subsequent legal action if needed.
What Are Safety Topics?
OSHA provides a list of topics that may be of concern to employers and employees who may have questions involving their right to a safe work environment. This list of topics is known as the "OSHA Safety Topics" list. OSHA often provides specific information for employers and employees, and also provides OSHA standards for that topic when available. These topics often form the basis of many OSHA complaints and workplace lawsuits.
The OSHA topics list is quite exhaustive; a few examples of some commonly referenced OSHA topics include:
- Agricultural Processes and Operations
- Chemical Hazards/Toxic Substances
- Fall Protection
- Hazardous Waste
- Musculoskeletal Disorders
- Occupational Conditions such as Occupational Asthma, Occupational Heat Exposure, Occupational Noise Exposure and other conditions
- Ventilation and Indoor Air Quality
- Welding and other Metal Issues
- Wood Dust
There are many, many other topics on this list. Researching this list can often be a good way for an employee to learn whether or not they’ve been subject to or exposed to a safety and health violation at work. Remedies for violations often include damages awards for lost wages, medical expenses, damaged property, and other costs.
What to Do about a Violation of Safety and Hazard Standards at Work
If you suspect that there has been a violation of OSHA standards or state/federal employment standards, you may need to file a claim with OSHA. This may entail some preparation on your part. You may wish to document the events and incidents leading up to your injury or economic loss. Also, it may be necessary to begin compiling papers, forms or other documents that could be used as evidence during the investigation. Lastly, in some cases, a lawsuit may be necessary if an OSHA investigation doesn’t provide an adequate remedy.
Do I Need a Lawyer for Help with OSHA Safety Topics?
OSHA Safety Topics can sometimes be quite comprehensive; you may need some legal assistance when it comes to understanding them. It can be in your best interests to hire an experienced employment lawyer near you if you need legal advice or representation. Your attorney can help you with your case and can assist with filing, reviewing, and supporting your case. Also, if you need to appear before an OSAH panel or in a court of law, your attorney can represent you during those times.