Safety Violations

The following data is OSHA’s Top 10 list of the most frequently cited violations for fiscal year 2011, covering the period of Oct. 1, 2010, through Sept. 30, 2011.

1. Fall Protection
Violations: 7,139

Standard: 1926.501
This standard defines where fall protection is required, the systems appropriate for given situations, the proper construction and installation of safety systems, and the proper supervision of employees to prevent falls. It is designed to protect employees on walking and working surfaces (horizontal or vertical) with an unprotected side or edge above 6 feet.

2. Scaffolding
Violations: 7,069

Standard: 1926.451
This standard covers general safety requirements for scaffolding, which should be designed by a qualified person and constructed and loaded in accordance with that design. Employers must protect construction workers from falls and falling objects while working on or near scaffolding at heights at 10 feet or higher.

3. Hazard Communication
Violations: 6,538

Standard: 1910.1200
The purpose of this standard is to ensure that the hazards of all chemicals produced or imported are evaluated, and that information concerning their hazards is transmitted to employers and employees. This transmittal of information is to be accomplished by means of comprehensive hazard communication programs, which are to include container labeling and other forms of warning, material safety data sheets and employee training.

4. Respiratory Protection
Violations: 3,944

Standard: 1910.134
This standard directs employers in establishing and maintaining a respiratory protection program. It lists requirements for program administration; worksite-specific procedures; respiratory selection; employee training; fit testing; medical evaluation; respirator use; and respirator cleaning, maintenance, and repair.

5. Lockout/Tagout
Violations: 3,639

Standard: 1910.147
This standard covers the servicing and maintenance of machines and equipment in which the start up of the machines or equipment, or release of stored energy, could harm employees. This standard establishes minimum performance requirements for the control of such hazardous energy.

6. Electrical – Wiring Methods
Violations: 3,584

Standard: 1910.305
This standard outlines the minimum performance requirements for the control of hazardous energy during servicing and maintenance of machines and equipment.

7. Powered Industrial Trucks
Violations: 3,432

Standard: 1910.178
This standard contains safety requirements relating to fire protection, design, maintenance, and use of fork trucks, tractors, platform lift trucks, motorized hand trucks, and other specialized industrial trucks powered by electric motors or internal combustion engines.

8. Ladders
Violations: 3,244

Standard: 1926.1053
This standard describes the requirements for all ladders, including job-made ladders.

9. Electrical – General Requirements
Violations: 2,863

Standard: 1910.303
This standard covers general safety requirements for designing electrical systems.

10. Machine Guarding
Violations: 2,728

Standard: 1910.212
This standard covers guarding of machinery to protect operators and other employees from hazards, including those created by point of operation, ingoing nip points, rotating parts, flying chips, and sparks.

See Health + Safety magazine’s article on “OHSA’s Top 10 Most Cited Violations” to see the lists of the Top 10 Serious Violations and the Top 10 Willful Violations.