Abatement is the correction of the safety or health hazard/violation that led to an OSHA citation. – Source OSHA
If your company has received a violation notification from OSHA then a company must go through OSHA’s abatement process to rectify the source of the violation. According to OSHA, a company must…
Step by Step procedure to conduct an abatement. (Source OSHA)
- Correct the source of the violation.
- Certify that the source problem has been corrected.
- Notify employees and their representatives that the problem has been corrected.
- Send documents to OSHA that informs the agency that the issue has been abated.
- Tag any cited movable equipment with a warning tag or a copy of the citation.
A company needs to comply with abating violations to prevent additional fines. The exact procedure for abating a violation can be found here
It is important for a company to correct violations and notify its employees in a timely fashion. OSHA expects a company to be in compliance within 30 days of the violation presentation. It is also possible to contest a violation in writing within 15 days.
In 2018, it was again cited by OSHA that Trips and Falls were the number one source of violations issued by OSHA. When it comes to fall protection, there are many things a company can do to reduce the number of violations due to a trip or fall. They include..
- Conduct an internal safety audit and look for Fall Hotspots.
- Look carefully at the loading dock area to determine if there are more fall protection elements that can be deployed.
- Does your company still use old fashioned scaffolding? If so replacing scaffolding with modern fall protection platforms is a good step.
- Look at the entry areas to see if there are adequate absorbent mats for inclement weather.
- Are there any pipes or conduits that form condensation that drips in an area?
- Are stairways unobstructed?
- Are the handrails on stairways loose?
- Are any stair treads loose?
- Look at the plant floor crossovers. Are any of the stair systems old and in need of replacement or repair.
- Are there any fixed ladders that are loose?
- Look on the roof. Is the rooftop adequately railed to prevent falls?
- Are there areas that need Crossover points?
This is far from a complete list but it is a good start. A slip or a fall starts the OSHA paperwork to flow so constant attention to OSHA’s number one violation is very important. Stay on top of any violations to address them on time.