Did you know that OSHA publishes statistics for high-value enforcement cases? Each week, OSHA updates a state-by-state list of enforcement cases with initial penalties above $40,000. Since we just wrapped 2015, I thought it was a good time to take a peak at the list to grab an annual snapshot. And, while I know that our OSHA offices in Ohio are active, I did not realize just how active.
According to OSHA, the only state with more high-value cases than Ohio last year was California(!). And, when you’re in California’s territory on an employment-law list, you know you’ve done something very wrong. While Illinois had 14 fewer cases than Ohio last year, it nipped Ohio by just under $200,000 for the highest aggregate penalties. California, by the way, was a distant third, trailing Ohio in dollars penalized by more than $1 million. Amazingly, Ohio employers racked up more penalties than the lowest 27 states combined.
Do I believe that Ohio’s employers are less safe than those of any other comparably sized state? Not for a second. So, what do these stats tell us? They tell us that OSHA’s Ohio-based investigators are a busy group with a heavy hand for issuing penalties.
What does this mean for you and your business? It means that as you set your business resolutions for 2016, getting your workplace-safety house in order should be at or near the top of your to-do list.
If you’re curious, here is the complete list, ranked by state in order of total penalties levied.
|State||No. of Violations||Total Penalties|