Skip to main content
Skip global navigation and go to main content

OSHA faces significant challenges in ensuring worker safety

Timely hazard abatement, employer reporting among agency headaches

Posted November 22, 2023

OSHA faces significant challenges in ensuring worker safety, particularly in high-risk industries such as healthcare, meat packing, agriculture, construction, forestry, fishing, and manufacturing, according to a recent report from the Office of Inspector General (OIG).

Among OSHA’s top challenges are:

  • Verifying timely hazard abatement at both general industry and construction worksites,
  • Employer reporting,
  • Completing inspections,
  • Reaching a sufficient number of worksites,
  • Infectious disease standards,
  • Workplace violence, and
  • Protecting workers from respirable crystalline silica.

The report, U.S. Department of Labor’s Top Management and Performance Challenges, summarizes OSHA’s progress in addressing these challenges, among them the new injury and illness reporting rule that goes into effect January 1, 2024. Recommendations for the agency include:

  • Creating a permanent infectious disease standard that protects workers in all high-risk industries.
  • Completing initiatives to improve employer reporting of severe injuries and illnesses.
  • Enhancing staff training on hazard abatement verification, especially of smaller and transient construction employers.
  • Exploring mechanisms to enhance interagency collaboration to take advantage of inspections being conducted by OSHA’s counterparts in the federal government.

This article was written by Rachel Krubsack of J. J. Keller & Associates, Inc.

Looking for more on workplace safety?

Get the information and products you need to stay on top of industry changes and comply with regs.

Learn More

J. J. Keller's free Workplace SafetyClicks™ e-newsletter brings quick-read safety and compliance news right to your inbox.

Sign up to receive Workplace SafetyClicks™