Changes at OSHA – 1 of 3 – SVE Program

OSHA is implementing a new Severe Violator Enforcement Program (SVEP) and increasing civil penalty amounts in an effort to address urgent safety and health problems. The SVEP allows OSHA to focus enforcement on recalcitrant employers who endanger workers with indifference to their safety responsibilities.

This program has some interesting and significant changes from the Enhanced Employer Program which the SVEP replaces.

High Emphasis Hazards are targeted

To be targeted under the SVEP, the hazard must be classified as high-gravity serious. Low and moderate violations will not be considered for a SVEP violation.

High Emphasis Hazards are:

  • Fall Hazards
  • Amputation Hazards
  • Combustible Dust Hazards
  • Crystalline Silica Hazards
  • Lead Hazards
  • Excavation/Trenching Hazards
  • Shipbreaking Hazards
  • Hazards Due to the Potential Release of a Highly Hazardous Chemical Process Safety Management

Nationwide Inspections of Related Workplaces/ Worksites. OSHA has found that employer indifference to compliance responsibilities under the Act may be indicative of broader patterns of non-compliance at related employer worksites. When there are reasonable grounds to believe that compliance problems identified in the initial inspection may be indicative of a broader pattern of non-compliance, OSHA will inspect related worksites of the same employer.

A Nationwide Referral Procedure

A Nationwide Referral Procedure is being initiated in which OSHA may inspect related worksites/workplaces of a SVEP employer. When the Director of Directorate of Enforcement Programs (DEP) deems it necessary to notify Regional Administrators and State Designees regarding activity of a particular company with locations (or construction company with worksites) in more than one Region and/or State Plan States, the Director will issue a SVEP Nationwide referral. The scope of inspection of a related establishment will depend upon the evidence gathered in the original SVEP inspection, and will mainly focus on the same or similar hazards to those found in the original case.

Hopefully, this will protect workers from the unscrupulous employers who just dont care about safety.

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