OSHA Severe Violator Program Scope Expanded

  • Published
  • 15 September 2022
  • Category
  • News

The U.S. Department of Labor announced today it is expanding criteria for placement in the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) Severe Violator Enforcement Program. The changes replace 2010 instructions and will remain in effect until canceled or superseded.

New criteria include violations of all hazards and OSHA standards. The program will continue to focus on repeat offenders in all industries. Previously, an employer could be in the program for failing to meet a limited number of standards. The changes broaden the program’s scope with the possibility that additional industries will fall within its parameters.

Since 2010, the Severe Violator Enforcement Program has focused on enforcement and inspection resources on employers who either willfully or repeatedly violate federal health and safety laws or demonstrate a refusal to correct previous violations. In addition to being included on a public list of the nation’s severe violators, targeted companies are subject to follow-up inspections. The updated criteria include the following:

  • Program placement for employers with citations for at least two willful or repeated violations or who receive failure-to-abate notices based on the presence of high-gravity, serious violations.
  • Follow-up or referral inspections made one year – and no longer than two years – after the final order.
  • Potential removal from the Severe Violator Enforcement Program three years after the date of receiving verification that the employer has abated all program-related hazards. In the past, removal could occur three years after the final order date.
  • Employers’ ability to reduce time spent in the program to two years, if they consent to an enhanced settlement agreement that includes use of a safety and health management system with seven basic elements in OSHA’s Recommended Practices for Safety and Health Programs.

Refer to OSHA Director Doug Parker’s blog on the Severe Violator Enforcement Program.