April 7, 2009

OSHA under fire from DOL Inspector General reports

OSHA has come under withering criticism in a report from the Department of Labor's inspector general for improperly enforcing safety and health laws against high risk employers with a history of safety violations and/or fatalities. In summarizing the report, Occupational Health & Safety notes: "The March 31 report says EEP [Enforced Enhancement Program] was mismanaged so badly that OSHA did not comply with EEP's requirements for 97 percent of sampled cases qualifying for it. No appropriate enforcement action was taken in 29 cases, the IG found -- and those employers subsequently experienced 20 fatalities, of which 14 deaths shared similar violations, the report states."

The report - Employers With Reported Fatalities Were Not Always Properly Identified and Inspected Under OSHA's Enhanced Enforcement Program (PDF) - summarizes the results of an audit of 325 work place inspections conducted under EEP from 2003 to 2008 in the Atlanta, Chicago, and Dallas regions.

The Pump Handle posts not just about this report, but also about a second report by the DOL Inspector General concerning the services provided by Randy Kimlin. Celeste Monforton discusses remuneration and oversight irregularities in regards to the consulting services of Kimlin, friend of OSHA chief Ed Foulke. According to investigative reporting by Washington Post reporter Jeff Smith, Kimlin's salary for his contract was "higher than that received by Vice President Cheney, any member of Congress and Foulke himself during that period." And the contract was awarded without competition: Procurement Violations and Irregularities Occurred in OSHA's Oversight of a Blanket Purchase Agreement (PDF)

For more commentary and news on these reports:
Claims Journal: Labor Department Enforcement Lacking, Report Finds

OSHA Underground takes issue with the report on weak enforcement of fatalities: IG's Report Links Weak Enforcement To Job Fatalities and suggests that OSHA Should Request Repayment From Consultant

Washington Post: Initiative On Worker Safety Gets Poor Marks - IG's Report Links Weak Enforcement To Job Fatalities

AFL-CIO Now Blog: Sweeney: Bush OSHA Failure to Enforce Job Safety Law Cost Workers' Lives

Associated Press: Labor Department enforcement lacking, probe finds

| 7 Comments

7 Comments

And the government thinks it can run an auto maker better than professionals.

Woe be unto us!!

Calling Elaine Chow? Paging Ms. Mr. McConnell. Ms/Mr Chow? Indictment for Mr./Ms McConnell/Chow...

And the government thinks it can run an auto maker better than professionals.

Management of the industry is irrelevant. All the Govt--including "thePrez"--want to do is kill the unions...And they've been expert at that at LEAST since PATCO in '81..

We have only just begun to find how the Bush administration completely dismantled all forms of government oversight programs in the US. In their minds, it was OSHA's fault we couldn't compete with the Chinese not the unfair trade agreements. If only the American workers weren't such wusses and wouldn't complain or worse yet sue every time a few of their co-workers and families were killed on the job. It goes much deeper than OSHA and some of it will take years to root out. Obama hasn't been in office three months yet and he doesn't even know the extent of what he doesn't know.

There are many valid critiques of the Bush admin, but dismantling OSHA isn't one of them. For having 'dismantled' OSHA, the Bushies were pretty effective at reducing opccupational fatalities. http://www.bls.gov/iif/oshwc/cfoi/cfch0006.pdf
Thousands fewer job fatalities occurred under Bush II than under Clinton. The 'dismantled' meme rings pretty hollow.

The Bushies in the BLS changed the reporting methods, that is why the numbers look better.

Figures don't lie...

justmonoise, please provide some documentation from an objective source that the CFOI reporting methods were changed by BLS.

Hmmm... no documentation of any change to CFOI; it appears that the factual basis of fewer job fatalities under Bush II is just that, a fact.

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This page contains a single entry by Julie Ferguson published on April 7, 2009 2:57 PM.

The Yogi Berra HWR, plus AIG, Florida lawyers, scaffolding & more news notes was the previous entry in this blog.

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