The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) has had a marked impact on workplace safety since its formation in 1971. In cooperation with employers, advocates, health and safety experts and other partners, OSHA has helped reduce the rate of workplace fatalities and work-related injury and illness by 65 and 67 percent, respectively, over the past 40 years, all while keeping up with the growing U.S. workforce.
Occupational Health & Safety in Manufacturing
Working in the manufacturing industry has been found to be especially risky for workers. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics:
- The manufacturing sector is responsible for 29.5 percent of all private industry occupational illness cases.
- In 2012, the incident rate for the manufacturing sector was one of the highest, with 38.6 cases per 10,000 full-time employees.
- For the past 15 years manufacturing has been the only private industry sector with a higher rate of job transfer and restriction cases than cases in which worker injury or illness caused employees to miss workdays.
Considering the increased safety risks associated with manufacturing, it is essential that employers establish comprehensive health and safety plans, require that workers adhere to the plan, and ensure that manufacturing facilities meet OSHA Standards. Manufacturers should pay particular attention to OSHA’s Top Ten Most Frequently Cited Standards, which include hazard communication, respiratory protection, powered industrial trucks and lock out/tag out, among others.
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