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Archive of: 2013

  • What is an IIPP?

    In this blog we are starting a periodic series which will answer frequently asked questions about Cal/OSHA and workplace safety.

    It seems appropriate to start with the most basic requirement found in Title 8: California’s Illness and Injury Prevention Plan (IIPP). We are starting with the IIPP because from time to time we still run into employers – usually new companies – who do not know they need to have an IIPP. So, here we go…

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  • Never Let A Serious Crisis Go To Waste

    Employer advocate Fred Walter discusses the effects of the brain drain at Cal/OSHA and asks why Cal/OSHA and management can’t work together to train new inspectors.

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  • Cal/OSHA Chief Ellen Widess Resigns

    The California Department of Industrial Relations announced today that Ellen Widess has resigned effective immediately from her position as Chief of the Division of Occupational Safety and Health. No specific reason was given for her resignation.

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  • Defining the Great Outdoors

    What does “outdoors” mean?  As the guardian of a new puppy, the definition is very clear to me, if not yet to her.

    The Division does not see it so clearly.  In 2007, it cited AC Transit for violations of the heat illness prevention regulation (Title 8 CCR 3395).  Specifically, the Division alleged that the public transportation agency failed to provide adequate drinking water and shade for bus drivers while driving their routes.

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  • New Cal/OSHA Appeals Board Rules Effective July 1, 2013

    The Cal/OSHA Appeals Board has adopted new procedural rules which will take effect on July 1st. Here are some highlights:

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  • Heat Illness Enforcement in High Gear

    With the second hot week of the summer season upon us, Cal/OSHA today held a conference call to go over their enforcement of the heat illness regulation for outdoor work, Title 8 California Code of Regulations section 3395. Some timely information came out of that hour-long presentation.

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  • The First Responder’s Dilemma Part II

    In the last episode of the First Responder’s Dilemma we learned that Cal/OSHA is now penalizing first responders as “employers” for failure to report serious injures encountered during accident response calls as required by Title 8 CCR section 342(b). We left you wondering if first responders have a duty to follow an injury to determine its “serious” nature. (see Title 8 CCR section 330(h))

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  • The First Responder’s Dilemma: Part I:

    The Orange County Fire Authority has had a bad couple of years, OSHA-wise.  Since March 15, 2011, the agency has been cited for at least six alleged violations of the reporting rule found at Title 8 Code of California Regulations section 342(b).  This is the public agency counterpart to the employer’s duty found in section 342(a) to report serious injuries and illnesses to Cal/OSHA. It requires police and fire agencies to report any “accident” which results in a serious injury, illness or death to an employee.

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  • Closing Conferences: The End of the Beginning

    When a Cal/OSHA or Fed/OSHA inspector sets a date for a closing conference it signals that the investigation has been completed and the content of the citations has been decided. In the conference, which usually takes place by telephone, the inspector will tell you what Cal/OSHA or Fed/OSHA is going to do. Specifically, you will be told which regulations they have concluded were violated, what classifications will be assigned to the citations, and how much the proposed penalty for each will be.

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  • Oooops.

    Well,  we’ve made our first error of the year. Probably not the last.

    Our prediction that Dr. Michaels will leave Fed/OSHA was premature. According to several sources, he has signed on to stay to the end of Obama’s term, as has his second-in-command Jordan Barab. There seems, then, no hope for any change in OSHA’s campaign against employers.

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