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OSHA's Top Ten Safety Violations - 2018

These 10 violations represent about 60 percent of the total incidents for 2018.

Easily the most well attended presentation at the annual National Safety Council Congress and Expo, which was held this week in Houston, was the unveiling of OSHA’s preliminary Top 10 Violations for 2018.

Although there wasn’t much change in the list, there was one newcomer and a significant increase in the total number of violations. Patrick Kapust, deputy director of OSHA’s Directorate of Enforcement Programs, provided the countdown, with these 10 violations representing about 60 percent of the total for 2018.

At #10 is the only new entry to the list, with OSHA registering 1,536 violations for Personal Protection and Lifesaving equipment related to the use of eye and face protection. According to Kapust, this often involved the wearer using prescription lenses in addition to PPE, which led to obscured views.

Down a spot and coming in at #9 are the 1,972 violations related to machine guarding. It seems a number of plants are still struggling to properly secure the guards and properly attach them.

Last year’s rookie sensation and this year’s #8 is Fall Protection – Training Requirements. It seems employers are still failing to provide the proper training materials and programs for employees as it relates to Fall Protection – only in greater numbers. There are 400 more citations this year than last.

Holding steady at #7, thanks to 2,294 violations, is the improper use of Powered Industrial Trucks, but more specifically, the certification and qualifying of operators for fork trucks and similar vehicles.

Improper ladder use came in at #6 with 2,812 violations, and despite OSHA’s concerted efforts in developing an amputation prevention program, Lock-Out-Tag-Out came in at #5 with 2,944 violations.

At #4 is Respiratory Protection, with facilities either providing ill-fitting equipment or failing to implement a proper program.

Coming down the home stretch, there were 3,336 violations related to #3 on the list – Scaffolding. The inability to properly implement and manage a Hazard Communication program led to the #2 most cited OSHA violation, tallying over 4,500 violations.

And still leading the way, and holding the #1 position with over 7,200 violations so far in 2018, is Fall Protection. This has been the number one OSHA violation for the last six years.

Perhaps the most concerning dynamic of this list is that the total number of violations comprised by 2018’s top 10 represents a 10.19 percent increase, or 2,942 more violations, than last year.


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