OSHA Announces Employer-Paid Personal Protective Equipment Final Rule:

Posted on December 10, 2007. Filed under: Uncategorized |

In the Nov. 15 Federal Register, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced the publication of a Final Rule for employer payment of personal protective equipment (PPE). Many Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) health, safety, maritime, and construction standards require employers to provide their employees with protective equipment, including personal protective equipment (PPE), when such equipment is necessary to protect employees from job-related injuries, illnesses, and fatalities. These requirements address PPE of many kinds: hard hats, gloves, goggles, safety shoes, safety glasses, welding helmets and goggles, faceshields, chemical protective equipment, fall protection equipment, and so forth. The provisions in OSHA standards that require PPE generally state that the employer is to provide such PPE. However, some of these provisions do not specify that the employer is to provide such PPE at no cost to the employee. In this rulemaking, OSHA is requiring employers to pay for the PPE provided, with exceptions for specific items. The rule does not require employers to provide PPE where none has been required before. Instead, the rule merely stipulates that the employer must pay for required PPE, except in the limited cases specified in the standard.
 
The final rule contains a few exceptions for ordinary safety-toed footwear, ordinary prescription safety eyewear, logging boots, and ordinary clothing and weather-related gear. The final rule also clarifies OSHA’s requirements regarding payment for employee-owned PPE and replacement PPE. While these clarifications have added several paragraphs to the regulatory text, the final rule provides employees no less protection than they would have received under the 1999 proposed standard.
 
This final rule becomes effective on February 13, 2008. The final rule must be implemented by May 15, 2008.
 
Source: January 2007 Coatings, posted 12/7/07 
 
 
 
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