Unavoidable Employee Misconduct

As you know, OSHA has announced that its focus will be enforcement, including aggressive inspection of workplace accidents, particularly fatalities. In order to be able to avoid potential citations arising out of a fatality, an employer must develop and enforce safety and health programs that address the hazards in its workplace. The enclosed article discusses an unfortunate fatality involving a fall at a telecommunication tower site. OSHA issued citations and the employer contested and took the case to trial. We tried the case on behalf of the employer. The Review Commission Administrative Law Judge carefully analyzed the evidence of the employer’s fall protection programs and found that they were compliant and that any violation that caused the fall was due to unavoidable employee misconduct. The citations were vacated. The article discusses what type of effort and documentation an employer must be prepared to present to successfully defend an OSHA fatality case. Please feel free to circulate the article and to reprint it and use it in training. Your comments are appreciated.

Read full article here.