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  • Eve Robles

Lessons Learned: Frequently Cited Standards Related to COVID-19 Inspections

Updated: Nov 17, 2020

In conducting COVID-19-related inspections, OSHA has frequently cited employers for violating certain standards. Employers can learn more about those frequently-cited standards and relevant resources in OSHA’s in-depth analysis of Common COVID-19 Citations. Employers must be vigilant to meet all OSHA requirements. The following are examples, to date, of requirements that employers have most frequently failed to follow:

 Provide a medical evaluation before a worker is fit-tested or uses a respirator.

 Perform an appropriate fit test for workers using tight fitting respirators.

 Assess the workplace to determine if COVID-19 hazards are present, or likely to be present, which will require the use of a respirator and/or other personal protective equipment (PPE).

 Establish, implement, and update a written respiratory protection program with required worksite-specific procedures.  Provide an appropriate respirator and/or other PPE to each employee when necessary to protect the health of the employees (ensuring the respirator and/or PPE used is the correct type and size).

 Train workers to safely use respirators and/or other PPE in the workplace, and retrain workers about changes in the workplace that might make previous training obsolete.

 Store respirators and other PPE properly in a way to protect them from damage, contamination, and, where applicable, deformation of the facepiece and exhalation valve.

 For any fatality that occurs within 30 days of a work-related incident, report the fatality to OSHA within eight hours of finding out about it.

 Keep required records of work-related fatalities, injuries, and illness.

Employers are also encouraged to learn more about OSHA’s On-Site Consultation Program, which offers no-cost and confidential occupational safety and health services to small- and medium-sized businesses.

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