Top OSHA Violations for FY 2016

Top OSHA Violations for FY 2016

Health & Safety Safety

Are you aware of the top OSHA violations in FY 2016? Not much has changed since the 2015 version, but that’s no excuse to ignore these new numbers.

Are you aware of the top OSHA violations in fiscal year (FY) 2016? Not much has changed since OSHA published the 2015 version — in fact, the only change from the 2015 list is that number eight, electrical, switched places with number nine, machine guarding. Overall, OSHA’s hit list hasn’t changed much over time.

Citations resulting from OSHA violations aren’t within the business plan of most employers, and yet, like clockwork, they make their way in year after year. The top 10 violations on OSHA’s most-cited list in FY 2016 account for more than 35,000 violations nationwide. Topping the list once more is the perennial fall protection standard in the construction industry. Number two on OSHA’s hit list is the popular hazard communication standard in general industry, where employers were cited for written program violations.

How can this list help you? Whether you are a small employer or a larger company, the top 10 most-cited OSHA violations list offers a renewed opportunity to validate the effectiveness of your safety and health management system. Below are the most-cited violations in the U.S.

Top 10 Most-Cited OSHA Violations for FY 2016

1. Fall Protection in Construction (29 CFR 1926.501)

This violation has ranked No. 1 since 2014, tallying 6,906 cited violations in 2016. The top two sections cited by OSHA within this standard are 29 CFR 1926.501(b)(13) – Residential construction and 29 CFR 1926.501(b)(1) – Unprotected sides and edges.

2. Hazard Communication in General Industry (29 CFR 1910.1200)

Ranking second once more, these 5,665 issued citations fall under 29 CFR 1910.1200(e)(1) – Develop, implement and maintain a written hazard communication program, and 29 CFR 1910.1200 (h)(1) – Provide workers effective information and training on hazardous chemicals.

3. Scaffolding in Construction (29 CFR 1926.451)

The top two sections cited by OSHA within this standard are 29 CFR 1926.451(g)(1) – Employee fall protection above 10 feet, and 29 CFR 1926.451(e)(1) – Access to scaffold platforms through means such as stairs or ladders. FY 2016 saw 3,900 of these violations cited.

4. Respiratory Protection in General Industry (29 CFR 1910.134)

29 CFR 1910.134(e)(1) – General requirements for medical evaluation and 29 CFR 1910.134(c)(1) – Establish and implement a written respiratory protection program with worksite-specific procedures were the top two sections cited in 2016, totaling 3,573 violations. Visit OSHA for more information on respiratory protection-specific regulations and standards in regard to shipyards, construction, marine terminals or longshoring.

5. Control of Hazardous Energy (Lockout/Tagout) in General Industry (29 CFR 1910.147)

For this violation, 29 CFR 1910.147(c)(4)(i) – Development, documentation and utilization of energy control procedures and 29 CFR 1910.147(c)(1) – Energy control program were the most-cited sections, with 3,406 violations. Lockout-related incidents often go unreported, as many of the injuries can often be grouped under more commonly used classifications like burns, equipment failure, electrocutions or lack of machine guarding.

6. Powered Industrial Trucks in General Industry (29 CFR 1910.178)

The top two most-cited in this section are 29 CFR 1910.178(l)(1)(i) – Ensure competency of powered industrial truck operators and 29 CFR 1910. 178(l)(4)(iii) – Conduct an evaluation of powered industrial truck operator’s performance at least once every three years. 2,855 such violations were cited in FY 2016.

7. Stairways and Ladders in Construction (29 CFR 1926.1053)

The top two sections cited by OSHA, with 2,625 violations, were 29 CFR 1926.1053(b)(1) – Ladder side rails must extend at least three feet above an upper landing surface and 29 CFR 1926.1053(b)(4) – Ladders shall be used only for the purpose for which they were designed.

8. Machine Guarding in General Industry (29 CFR 1910.212)

This standard, totaling 2,448 violations, jumped a spot from number nine in 2015. The top two sections cited by OSHA within this standard in 2016 were 29 CFR 1910.212(a)(1) – Types of guarding and 29 CFR 1910.212(a)(3)(ii) – Guard the point of operation.

9. Electrical – Wiring Methods in General Industry (29 CFR 1910.305)

Falling down a spot from 2015, the top two sections cited within this standard were 29 CFR 1910.305(g)(1)(iv)(A) – Flexible cords and cables cannot be used as a substitute for fixed wiring of a structure and 29 CFR 1910.305(b)(1)(ii) – Unused openings in cabinets, boxes and fittings shall be effectively closed, with 1,937 violations cited in total.

10. Electrical Systems Design in General Industry (29 CFR 1910.303)

The top-cited sections in this standard were 29 CFR 1910.303(b)(2) – Install and use equipment in accordance with instructions included in the listing or labeling and 29 CFR 1910.303(g)(2)(i) – Guarding of live parts. Tally up another 1,704 violations cited for this section.

J.A. Rodriguez Jr.
J.A. Rodriguez Jr.

J.A. Rodriguez Jr., CSP, is the CEO of Make My Day Strategies LLC and a global Fortune 100 senior manager. Rodriguez was honored to be selected by EHS Today Magazine as one of "The 50 People Who Most Influenced environmental, health and safety in 2012-2013" and "2014 - 2015."