What Are OSHA Standards In Construction Industry?
The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (OSHA), was developed to ensure safe and healthy working conditions on construction sites. According to OSHA laws, employers are responsible for providing optimal working conditions for employees. It has come to attention that various violations have been addressed in regular checkups. We would like to focus on common violations, such as; not meeting scaffolding requirements or utilizing proper PPE, failure to meet required respiratory protection, fall protection violations and a lack of proper training. Let’s take a closer look at the standards that need to be met.
OSHA regulations are found in Title 29 (labor) of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). Safety and health requirements concerning the construction industry are described in this section as well. Companies meet the requirements by obtaining certification permitting employees to perform specific jobs in the construction field. OSHA construction standards are a set of rules that describe which requirements must be met by construction site supervisors in order to guarantee the safety of their employees.
To put regulations into practice, employers should make sure employees obtain the right construction training certificates. In accordance with Local Law 196 (NYC DOB Requirements) employees are required to have a minimum of OSHA 30 training, and supervisors - a total of 62 hours. As of September 1, 2020, employees need to obtain a total of 40 hours of training (including an 8-hour fall prevention course and two-hour drug and alcohol awareness course). Additionally, the mandatory SST (Site Safety Training) card is considered official proof of completing the training.
Furthermore, in order to be permitted to renovate, repair, or paint houses, schools or daycare buildings older than 1978, firms must have a valid EPA Lead Renovator Certification. Once obtained, it is imperative managers and employees make sure the certification has not expired. Once close to the expiration date, all should apply for renewal courses in order to obtain EPA renovator renewal. A failure to renew certifications is not only dangerous, but could lead to high fines of up to $37,500 per day.
A Better Understanding of OSHA
Attending and completing all the CEU (Continuing Education Units) equips construction workers and site managers with the necessary understanding of what OSHA specifications are and how to avoid potential construction hazards. This is possible by meeting PPE requirements and acquiring the proper fall protection gear, electrical protective equipment, respiratory protection, operating vehicles, etc. Being knowledgeable in these matters not only keeps employees productive, but most importantly safe and healthy.
OSHA construction standards shouldn’t be considered a written formality, nor should they be merely followed, but earnestly put into practice. A clear understanding of the rules and how they can be implemented is a prerequisite to creating an entirely safe and welcoming working environment on construction sites. Having a solid training background and responsible approach to implementation ensures completing goals while putting lives out of danger.