In a webinar entitled 'Safety Audit and Compliance Management:
Practical Strategies for Avoiding OSHA Citation Landmines Under Both State and Federal Law,' attorney James T. Dufour, CIH, REA, of Dufour Law & Regulatory Compliance and Dufour Seminars & Training discussed legal issues surrounding safety audits.
States with approved occupational safety and health plans can use federal OSHA standards or adopt their own standards. California is one state plan state that adopts novel standards and expands federal ones. Following are some of the differences between Fed/OSHA and Cal/OSHA.
Fed/OSHA requires employers to report a death or three or more serious injuries from the same accident. Cal/OSHA requires the reporting of one death or one serious injury. Fed/OSHA's penalty for not reporting within eight hours is less than $500, where in California the penalty is a mandatory $5,000.
The Fed/OSHA penalty for a serious violation is up to $7,000; usually ranging from $500 to $1,500. The Cal/OSHA penalty for a serious violation is up to $25,000, with a $18,000 minimum if it is accident related.
Fed/OSHA and Cal/OSHA define serious violation differently. For Fed/OSHA, serious violation requires employer knowledge or failure to exercise reasonable diligence. Cal/OSHA has strict liability; lack of knowledge or failure to exercise reasonable diligence can be shown as defense.
The Fed/OSHA penalty for failure to abate a violation is up to $7,000 per day. In California, it is up to $15,000 per day.
Attorney James T. Dufour, CIH, REA, of Dufour Law & Regulatory Compliance and Dufour Seminars & Training can be reached at 916-553-3111 or at firstname.lastname@example.org .
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