Should I be concerned about O.S.H.A. inspecting my small business?
being prepared before you are inspected

By: Chris Lunde

In the this article I will tell you how to get O.S.H.A. to inspect your business, and I will also tell you what you need to do to be prepared before you are inspected.  First, there are a number of different things that can trigger an inspection.  

The most common reason for an inspection is a major employee injury, decapitation, and or death.   There can also be an inspection in your small business because of an employee complaint, typically this occurs when a supervisor does not take action on a safety concern brought to their attention by someone that works for them.  The other less common trigger for inspection is a complaint by a customer, or an employee’s relative. 

Some high risk industries do not need something to trigger an inspection,  they automatically get inspected based upon industry risk statistics.  Second, O.S.H.A. will inspect everything.  They will leave no stone unturned.  

They will look for records of injuries, and a myriad of other things that are specific to your situation.  For example if you have an eyewash station mounted in your place of business.  This eyewash station could be fined for the following reasons: Monthly inspection tag and record are not available, eyewash solution has expired, system has been used and not refilled, the station is not accessible, the station does not work, and etc.  

The fact is that they do this in every little part of your business no matter how much it is used or how dangerous you think that it is.  Third, the fact is that you can have a very clean inspection by following the guidelines that O.S.H.A. has published.  You must keep everything in good order and keep you records for a long period of time to ensure that you are in compliance.  Fourth, there are many places you can go find the information that you need.  The most obvious is the O.S.H.A. website: .  

The 2nd best location to check is your state website.  The 3rd option is to hire a consultant.  The fact is that O.S.H.A. inspections are real, they could happen to you, they can cost you your profits, your business and much more.  I encourage you make sure your workplace is in compliance as soon as possible.

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Last modified: November 08, 2002