OSHA Steps Up Enforcement as Violations Rise

In 2007 there was a 6% increase in safety violations compared to 2006.

Overall workplace safety violations increased in the United States by 6% in 2007 over the previous year, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

The department attributes the rise to an increase in enforcement efforts. OSHA conducted 39,324 inspections in 2007, a 4.3% increase over its 2007 goal of 37,700 inspections. At the same time, total violations increased 6% over 2006, with serious infractions rising 9% and repeat offenses increasing 6.4%. OSHA reported a record number of Enhanced Enforcement Program (EEP) violations (719) in 2007.

EEP targets employers who, despite OSHA's enforcement and outreach efforts, repeatedly ignore their OSH Act obligations and place their employees at risk. EEP focuses on cases with extremely serious violations related either to a fatality or to multiple willful or repeated violations.

OSHA Violation Statistics 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 % Change
2003-2007
Total Violations 83,539 86,708 85,307 83,913 88,846 6.4
Total Serious Violations 59,861 61,666 61,018 61,337 67,176 12.2
Total Willful Violations 404 462 747 479 415 2.7
Total Repeat Violations 2,147 2,360 2,350 2,551 2,714 26.4
Total Other-than-Serious 20,552 21,705 20,819 19,246 18,331 -10.8

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