Does your warehouse maintain appropriate safety standards? Is your material handling equipment in good working order? An OSHA inspection can occur when you least expect it, so use these guidelines to be prepared at a moment’s notice.
During the Opening Conference
– Wait until designated management personnel are on site.
– Ask for a copy of the complaint and determine whether the inspection is safety- or industry hygiene-related.
– Designate an employee representative. If your warehouse is organized, a union official may serve. If not, choose a member of your safety committee.
– Limit the scope of the investigation to areas corresponding to the complaint.
During the Walk-Around
– Stay with the inspector at all times, but involve as few others as possible.
– Provide information only when asked, and don’t go beyond the parameters of the questions.
– Take pictures of anything the inspector photographs.
– Keep copies of any documents requested by the inspector and take detailed notes of the walk-through, recording the areas inspected, how much time was spent in each and the names of any employees who were interviewed.
– Repair minor violations on the spot to show good faith.
– If the inspection is related to industrial hygiene, find out what tests OSHA will be conducting and consider having simultaneous testing done by a third party.
During the Closing Conference
– Listen carefully and take notes.
– Be conservative when establishing timelines for correcting any violations.
– Refrain from arguing with the inspector.
– Discuss your company’s established safety programs to demonstrate your commitment to good health and safe working conditions.
Material Handling Equipment that Exceeds OSHA Standards