OSHA 2010 and 2011: A Review of OSHA’s Expanded Enforcement Initiatives in 2010 and the Outlook for 2011


The business community has been placed on notice. OSHA has been actively pursuing its regulatory agenda, while also arming its arsenal to enforce compliance. This alert explores the highlights of OSHA’s initiatives in 2010 and what companies can expect in 2011.

OSHA 2010: Expanded Enforcement and an Active Commission

OSHA’s efforts throughout 2010 included expanded enforcement, a negative publicity campaign, and clearance of several legacy cases from the OSHA Review Commission (“OSHRC”) docket.

2010 Enforcement Statistics. OSHA enhanced its enforcement efforts in 2010 by adding more than 100 inspectors and exceeding its inspection goals. In the 2010 fiscal year (ending September 30, 2010), OSHA conducted nearly 41,000 inspections, including 6,600 health inspections. From those inspections, OSHA issued 96,742 violations, with a significant majority (77%) receiving serious citations. Businesses paid an average of $1,000 for each serious violation. However, recently, OSHA implemented a new internal policy raising the maximum penalty for a serious violation from $1,000 to an average of between $3,000 and $4,000. (See February 2011, Client Alert “OSHA Administrative Penalty Information Bulletin”).

To view charts summarizing 2010 OSHA inspection data and to continue reading the alert, including an outlook for 2011, please click on the PDF linked below. If you have any questions, please visit the Haynes and Boone Labor and Employment Practice page of our website or contact one of the attorneys listed below:

Matthew T. Deffebach


Melissa M. Goodman


Karen Coomer Denney


Felicity A. Fowler


Dean J. Schaner


Laura E. O'Donnell







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