OSHA’s 2012 Regulatory Agenda

Well it barely made 2012 (being finally published in the final week of 2012) but the OSHA 2012 Regulatory Agenda is finally available.
What is the Regulatory Agenda? Simply put it’s a document that outlines what OSHA is working on and when you can expect to see results.

Among the most significant items on the list…

1. A confined space standard for the constrution industry. There’s been a general industry confined space standard since 1993 but, because of the special challenges involved with the construction industry, they has long been a need for this counterpart to it. OSHA is expecting the standard to be finalized and available by July of this year.

2. The final rule for Walking Working Surfaces section of the fall protection standard. This proposal dates back almost 13 years now, intended to update the standard based on new technologies and procedures. The final ruling is due in August.

3. An update to the Electric Power Transmission and Distribution standard. Based on a fatality rate of 50 workers for every 100,000 OSHA intends this revision to “prevent many of these fatalities”. The final ruling is due in March.

4. Major changes to the Cooperative Programs. The main point in this revision is to remove and eliminate most of the exemptions from enforcement that have shielded many companies. The final ruling is due in April.

You can read the complete agenda here.

One blaring omission is any set date for a final ruling on the combustible dust standard. It’s been put back on the table but it still doesn’t look like we’ll be seeing a standard any time soon with 3 stakeholders meetings scheduled and the SBREFA due to initiate in October.