by Howard Mavity
Senior Partner, Fisher & Phillips
Readers already know to take photos whenever an OSHA Compliance Officer takes shots, and a few other standard labor lawyer recommendations, but I’d like to take a moment to talk about “why” we urge employers to take certain steps before and during an OSHA inspection.
1. Plan in advance
Every company site should have a number of managers who know the basic steps to take whenever any government investigator shows up. The most important step is for site managers to know who to call to obtain guidance. No executive or in-house counsel will be pleased to learn of an investigation upon receipt of a citation. This also means that every superintendent and project manager needs to at least know the “basics” of an OSHA inspection and who to call within the company.
Fatalities call for even better prepared systems. I have learned that no matter how tough one may be, they shut down when a co-worker or subordinate is killed. At most, site management can deal with evacuating and protecting employees, and dealing with first responders.
The company needs a system in place so that with one call, the site manager activates corporate support, including legal and risk management guidance, assistance to employees and families, and press and media management.
2. Make sure management takes an inspection seriously
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