The enclosed article is an extensive discussion of a recent OSHA Review Commission case that illustrates how an employer can become involved with OSHA in escalating citations and penalties that can be overwhelming and potentially threaten the employer’s existence. The employer, a construction company, received a series of OSHA lead citations over a two year period which started out with one inspection in 1992 at a bridge renovation site resulting in serious citations and $50,000 in penalties, followed by a series of later inspections also involving lead compliance, respirators and training. Because the agency contended that the employer did not comply with the requirements outlined in the earlier citations, the employer received four serious and 202 willful citations in 1993 at the same bridge site with a proposed penalty of $5,008,500. The article discusses how this situation occurred and sets out a strategy that employers may wish to consider when they receive citations to avoid the liability pyramid that can occur with an escalating history of citations with the agency. Please feel free to use this article for training or to publish it for your use.
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