As previously reported, MIOSHA has been in the process of adopting major changes to safety requirements for walking-working surfaces and fall protection for all workplaces.
The changes are necessitated by changes to federal OSHA rules. MMA expects Michigan’s rules to be finalized and become effective any day, though MIOSHA has assured us that they will give employers reasonable time to implement the new changes before issuing citations in the field.
Because the changes are so dramatic, MIOSHA is conducting informational sessions across the state and MMA is attending on your behalf. While your company’s leadership and safety staff must familiarize themselves with the new rules, below are some of the most notable items to take away from the informational session:
- The new rules represent a performance standard, rather than the specific requirements of previous regulations. MIOSHA hopes that this will provide employers with flexibility to come up with solutions that ensure employee health and safety.
- New definitions of “authorized employee,” “qualified employee” and others will have a great impact on your company’s compliance
- Companies must ensure regular and thorough processes for housekeeping, inspection, maintenance and repair of walking-working surfaces.
- Employees must be trained in these processes and certain functions must be performed by “qualified” individuals.
- Requirements for fall protection have changed considerably.
- Before any employee is exposed to fall hazards, they must be trained by a qualified person. Documentation of this training is critical to compliance.
Here are some resources on the new MIOSHA Walking-Working Surface and Fall Protection rules:
MIOSHA Informational Sessions on the new rules are listed below:
- February 20: Oakland University, Rochester
- March 7: Kalamazoo (specific location not yet confirmed)
- March 26: Macomb Community College
- April 17-18: Lansing Safety Conference
- April 27: U.P. Safety Conference
MMA will notify you as soon as the rules become final. If you have any issues or problems with MIOSHA field staff inspections relating to these new rules, contact MMA’s Delaney McKinley directly.
This article was originally published in the 1/16/18 issue of MMA’s MFG Voice.