Last year OSHA proposed fines of $290,100 to Altamont Ambulance Service, Inc. after investigators found specific guidelines to protect emergency healthcare workers from exposure to bloodborne pathogens and other hazards while providing patient care, were not followed.
Federal safety and health investigators found the employer failed to:
- Establish an exposure control plan for bloodborne pathogens and other potentially infectious material.
- Make Hepatitis B vaccination series available to employees.
- Train workers about chemical and bloodborne pathogen hazards and precautions.
- Develop an emergency response plan.
- Dispose of, clean or launder contaminated personal protection equipment.
- Train workers in operations level emergency response.
- Communicate decisions on the use of personal protective equipment to employees.
- Develop a respiratory protection program to protect against infectious diseases.
- Train workers about the use of hazardous chemicals in their work area.
- Conduct an exposure determination for blood borne pathogens.
- Provide injury and illness logs to inspectors within four hours.
- Mark, keep clear and properly light emergency exits.
- Follow electrical safe work places. Investigators found opened breaker panel boxes, extension cords used as fixed wiring, exposed light sockets.
- Train workers in the use of fire extinguishers.
How an OSHA self inspection and hazard risk assessment could have prevented fines?
Performing an OSHA Hazard Risk Assessment (HRA), such as HCP's HRA, is an evaluation of your workplace that helps you determine what hazards your employees are exposed to and what Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) they need to wear to protect themselves. Performing self-inspections periodically, such as HCP's OSHA self-inspection, allows you to act as an OSHA inspector in your workplace. HCP's self-inspection tool looks at your General Work Environment, Building Safety, First-Aid and Medical Emergencies, Bloodborne Pathogens Standard, Hazard Communication, Regulated Waste Management, and more.
Using these tools can help your organization ensure a safe workplace for all employees, and prevent fines in the event actual OSHA inspectors visit your facility.
If you have any questions or would like additional information about any of our OSHA tools, please do not hesitate to contact us.