Did you know OSHA has a free and confidential on-site small business consultation program to help companies identify and address hazards? Priority is given to high-risk industries like construction.
OSHA’s On-site Consultation Program offers free and confidential safety and occupational health advice to small and medium-sized businesses in all states across the country, with priority given to high-hazard worksites. On-site Consultation services are separate from enforcement and do not result in penalties or citations. Consultants from state agencies or universities work with employers to identify workplace hazards, provide advice on compliance with OSHA standards, and assist in establishing injury and illness prevention programs.
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Process and Benefits
This free safety and health consultation program is completely separate from the OSHA inspection effort. Primarily targeted for smaller businesses, employers can find out about potential hazards at their workplace, improve programs that are already in place, and even qualify for a one-year exemption from routine OSHA inspections.
The consultation is confidential and will not be reported routinely to the OSHA inspection staff. No citations or penalties are issued and your only obligation is to correct serious job safety and health hazards–a commitment which you are expected to make prior to the actual visit and carry out in a timely manner.
Using OSHA’s free consultation service lowers injury and illness rates, ultimately saving both employers and employees from the cost of accidents while raising morale and increasing productivity rates.
During an On-Site Visit
Because consultation is a voluntary activity, you must request it (see OSHA’s Consultation Directory). The consultant will discuss your specific needs with you and set up a visit date based on the priority assigned to your request, your work schedule, and the time needed for the consultant to adequately prepare to serve you.
The consultant will start with an opening conference with you before beginning the walk through. The consultant will study your entire workplace, pointing out safety or health risks (some which may not have an applicable OSHA standard). After the walk-through, the consultant will review the findings with you before leaving. Finally, the consultant will send you a detailed written report explaining the findings and confirming any abatement periods agreed upon. They may also contact you from time to time to check your progress.
Website: OSHA’s On-site Consultation Program