1. What does the OSHA consultation service cost and who is eligible?
Consultation services are already paid for with your tax dollars and there are no additional charges. Oklahoma employers with 250 or less employees on site or 500 employees corporate-wide are eligible for full-service consultation. Limited services are also available to larger companies.
2. What is the OSHA consultation service all about?
The Oklahoma OSHA Consultation service is designed to help both employers and employees prevent workplace injuries and illnesses by:
- Guiding the employer in the development of a fully functional safety and health program which addresses the areas of management leadership, employee participation, workplace analysis, hazard prevention and control and training. This is in addition to assisting with the OSHA required written programs.
- Identification of physical hazards which may involve machine guarding; fire and flammable materials; electrical; material handling and storage; falls; personal protective equipment; and, other hazards.
- Identification and monitoring of health exposure hazards, such as noise, and toxic air contaminants such as organic vapors, metal fumes, silica, harmful dusts and other substances.
The Oklahoma Department of Labor does not assess fines or penalties. Our service allows an employer to benefit from professional assistance which covers the same regulations followed by Federal OSHA.
3. As an employer, must I fix all identified hazards and how is it verified?
The employer is obligated to correct all serious hazards found by the consultant within a reasonable period of time. Extensions are granted if a hardship is identified and if the employer is providing interim protection from the hazard for employees. For regular consultation visits, a statement of assurance of correction for each hazard is acceptable. For special program consultations a follow-up visit is usually conducted to verify the correction of hazards.
4. Will a consultation lead to a Federal OSHA inspection?
All information is kept confidential. The only time Federal OSHA is contacted is on the rare occasion a company refuses to correct serious hazards within a reasonable period of time, but only after the ODOL has made every attempt to work with the company to eliminate the hazard.
5. How much will it cost to correct any identified hazards?
The expense in correcting hazards are usually minor. Keep in mind, the long-term and often hidden costs of failing to correct a hazard are often much greater than the short-term costs of correction.
6. Can a consultant conduct onsite training sessions?
Onsite training and education by consultants is generally informal, occurring during the process of the consultation visit, involving both the employer and the employees. Training may also be conducted when an employee requests a visit for that purpose.
7. Will consultants require access to all areas during a consultation visit?
As the employer, the decision is yours. Although most employers prefer a comprehensive survey, you may request a visit for specific areas or technical assistance. Also, you may alter the scope of your request or terminate the visit at any time. ODOL OSHA consultants can only visit your site by invitation.
8. Have consultants visited or will they subsequently visit my competitor?
Our service extends to all eligible companies who request it. All information is kept confidential; therefore, no hazards or processes which may be a trade secret observed in your facility will be discussed in another place of business.
9. How does a company qualify for a Federal OSHA exemption?
SHARP is a special program for those companies wishing to go the extra mile in establishing an exemplary safety and health program. Certification provides up to a two-year exemption from Federal OSHA?s general schedule inspections.
10. How long does it take to conduct a consultation?
The time may vary from a couple of hours to a full day, depending on the size of your facility and the scope of assistance requested. Should exposure monitoring be requested or recommended, additional days are scheduled.
11. How do I get started?
Consultation services are available upon request by calling any of the following numbers:
Statewide toll-free 1-888-269-5353
Oklahoma City 405-521-6141