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OSHA offices closed due to government shut down

Posted by Mark Paskell on Thu, Oct 10, 2013 @ 10:16 PM

OSHA offices are closed and most activity has come to a halt due to the government shut down. I called the OSHA office in Braintree this week and was greeted by a voice message that they are closed. However they will answer calls for complaints and imminnent danger situations.

Contractor thinking about sneaking job in (without fall protection) while OSHA is shut down

Today I got an interesting call from a contractor who asked if he needs to worry about OSHA enforcement in the coming weeks. He said he is doing a high project in a highly visible area.

I asked him "why does it matter if OSHA is open or not".

He said he recently learned he is not up to speed on OSHA fall protection procedures and training because a contractor he knows was just visited by OSHA doing a similar job. It turns out his contractor friend was not utilizing fall protection equipment.

I asked him if the men will be working 6 feet above lower levels and he said absolutley, 20 feet on one side and 30 feet on the other. I suggested he use harnesses and or guard rails to protect his workers and prevent the possibility that someone gets hurt. In addition I mentioned that many contractors and other regulators can easily drop a dime.

Here is what he said next: "Thanks for the tip but I don't have the money to provide the equipment. I'll take my chances and try to get the job done before the government shut down ends.

Unfortunately this contractor is choosing to expose his crew to unsafe conditions and he is willing to take the chance that no one sees his project. I doubt he will ever call again as I tried to talk him out of working unsafe. Hopefully he will do the job and everyone will go home safe.  

I sent him a copy of the shut down text printed on the OSHA website that says they will still receive and answer complaints. 


On the OSHA website the following;            osha

This website is currently not being updated due to the suspension of Federal Government services. The last update to the site was October 1, 2013. Updates to the site will start again when the Federal Government resumes operations. If you need to report a workplace fatality, hospitalizations, an imminent danger situation, or you are filing a hazard complaint, please contact our toll free number: 1-800-321-OSHA (6742); TTY 1-877-889-5627 (or contact OSHA’s area and regional offices during normal business hours.)


Tags: fall protection