Enterprise Systems Analytics

National Emphasis Program

The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is initiating a national emphasis program (NEP) on recordkeeping to assess the accuracy of injury and illness data recorded by employers.

The recordkeeping NEP involves inspecting occupational injury and illness records prepared by businesses and appropriately enforcing regulatory requirements when employers are found to be under-recording injuries and illnesses. The inspections include a records review, employee interviews, and a limited safety and health inspection of the workplace. The NEP will focus on selected industries with high injury and illness rates.

Subject: National Emphasis Program on Combustible Dust
Directive Number: CPL 03-00-008

The purpose of this NEP is to inspect facilities that generate or handle combustible dusts which pose a deflagration or other fire hazard when suspended in air or some other oxidizing medium over a range of concentrations, regardless of particle size or shape; deflagrations can lead to explosions. Combustible dusts are often either organic or metal dusts that are finely ground into very small particles, fibers, fines, chips, chunks, flakes, or a small mixture of these. Types of dusts include, but are not limited to: metal dust, such as aluminum and magnesium; wood dust; plastic dust; biosolids; organic dust, such as sugar, paper, soap, and dried blood; and dusts from certain textiles. Some industries that handle combustible dusts include: agriculture, chemicals, textiles, forest and furniture products, wastewater treatment, metal processing, paper products, pharmaceuticals, and recycling operations (metal, paper, and plastic).
In situations where the facility being inspected is not a grain handling facility, the lab results indicate that the dust is combustible, and the combustible dust accumulations not contained within dust control systems or other containers, such as storage bins, are extensive enough to pose a deflagration, explosion, or other fire hazard, then citations under 29 CFR 1910.22 (housekeeping) or, where appropriate, 29 CFR 1910.176(c) (housekeeping in storage areas) may generally be issued. Combustible dusts found in grain handling facilities are covered by 29 CFR 1910.272.
For workplaces not covered by 1910.272, but where combustible dust hazards exist within dust control systems or other containers, citations under section 5(a)(1) of the OSH Act (the General Duty Clause) may generally be issued for deflagration, other fire, or explosion hazards. National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standards (listed in Appendix A of this directive) should be consulted to obtain evidence of hazard recognition and feasible abatement methods. Other standards are applicable to the combustible dust hazard. For example, if the workplace has a Class II location, then citations under 29 CFR 1910.307 may be issued to those employers having electrical equipment not meeting the standard's requirements.

Subject: National Emphasis Program on Amputations
Directive Number: CPL 03-00-003

The intent of this NEP is to target workplaces with machinery and equipment that cause (or are capable of causing) amputations and workplaces where amputations have occurred, in order to reduce amputation injuries while maximizing the OSHA’s inspection resources.

The operation of machinery and equipment can be extremely dangerous, and compliance with OSHA's machine guarding and hazardous energy control standards needs to be improved. Injuries involving machinery and equipment often result in death or permanent disability, and OSHA's inspection history indicates that employee exposures to unguarded or inadequately guarded machinery and equipment, together with associated hazardous energy employee exposures during servicing and maintenance activities, occur in many workplaces. Subparts J, O, and P of 29 CFR 1910 provide for safety measures that need to be used for the safe operation, servicing and maintenance of machinery and equipment. Machinery and equipment are covered by standards such as, but not limited to, §1910.147, §1910.212, §1910.213, §1910.217, and §1910.219.

Subject: National Emphasis Program on Occupational Exposure to Lead
Directive Number: CPL 03-00-0009

This NEP is implemented to direct OSHA’s field inspection efforts to address lead exposures in the workplace, including General Industry (1910), Construction (1926), Shipyard (1915), Longshoring (1918) and Marine Terminals (1917.)
The toxic effects of occupational exposure to lead are well established. Lead is a potent, systemic poison that serves no known useful function once absorbed by the body. Lead adversely affects numerous body systems and causes forms of health impairment and disease which can arise from acute or chronic exposure, including damage to blood-forming, nervous, urinary, and reproductive systems. In 1990 the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) set as a national goal the elimination of lead exposures that result in workers having blood lead concentrations greater than 25 ug/dL of whole blood.

Subject: National Emphasis Program on Shipbreaking
Directive Number: CPL 02-00-136

This National Emphasis Program (NEP) is designed reduce or eliminate workplace hazards associated with shipbreaking operations. In the OSHA FY 2003-2008 Strategic Management Plan, OSHA has committed to focused interventions in the shipyard industries (29 CFR Part 1915) to reduce injuries, illness and fatalities to support DOL Strategic Outcome Goal 3.1, Reduce workplace fatalities, injuries, and illnesses.

Also, OSHA has entered into a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) on Interagency Coordination and Cooperation for Ship Scrapping (i.e., shipbreaking) between DOD, DOT, EPA, and DOL-OSHA. This MOA requires OSHA to develop an emphasis program for scheduling programmed inspections of shipbreaking operations. This instruction is issued in support of OSHA's Strategic Plan and the Interagency MOA.
This instruction applies OSHA-wide to all programmed and unprogrammed enforcement inspections of shipbreaking operations. For scheduling purposes, only inspections covered by the MOA will be programmed pursuant to this instruction. For reporting purposes, all inspections of shipbreaking operations (i.e., MOA programmed, MOA unprogrammed, Local Emphasis Program (LEP) programmed, LEP unprogrammed, and other unprogrammed) will be reported pursuant to this NEP.
Subject: National Emphasis Program on Crystalline Silica
Directive Number: CPL 03-00-007

This NEP concerns the ability to identify and reduce or eliminate the health hazards associated with occupational exposure to crystalline silica. In 1996, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued a memorandum establishing a Special Emphasis Program (SEP) for Silicosis, which provided guidance for targeting inspections of worksites with employees at risk of developing silicosis . This instruction establishes a National Emphasis Program (NEP) that expands and builds upon the 1996 SEP. This instruction addresses targeting of worksites with elevated exposure to crystalline silica, as well as silica-related inspection procedures and compliance assistance. All Local Emphasis Programs (LEPs) for silica-related activities may remain in effect under this NEP. Any conflicts between an LEP and an NEP should be resolved in favor of the NEP.

Subject: National Emphasis Program on Trenching & Excavation
Directive Number: CPL 02-00-069

This NEP concerns the continuing incidence of trench/excavation collapses and accompanying loss of life. OSHA has determined an increased enforcement presence at worksites where such operations are being conducted is warranted.

Trenching and excavation work creates hazards to workers which are extremely dangerous. Compliance with OSHA construction standards applicable to such operations is frequently bypassed because of economic pressures, a belief that compliance is unnecessary or an expectation that these short-term operations will go undetected.

Although it would be expected that, after more than 12 years of enforcement activity, most employers would be adhering to shoring and sloping requirements, experience has shown that such is not the case. OSHA believes that the rate of deaths and serious injuries resulting from trench/excavation accidents (mostly cave-ins) can be significantly affected only by a concentration of compliance resources within the area of trenching and excavation operations.

Currently 6 of OSHA's 10 Regions are already conducting local emphasis programs in this area. These local emphasis programs are all similar in nature. The decision has been made to replace these programs with a National Emphasis Program extended to all Regions.

The construction scheduling procedures outlined in the FOM cannot be used in scheduling inspections of trenching and excavation operations because the timing of such inspections is extremely important. These operations tend to begin and end quickly and must be inspected while they are in operation. 

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