FLASH REPORTS

Flash: Officials Halt Johnson & Johnson Vaccine

Why are the Centers for Disease Control and the Food and Drug Administration halting use of the one-shot Johnson & Johnson COVID vaccine? Here's what you need to know.

Flash: Californian Picked to Head Fed-OSHA

There is about to be a new gun running federal OSHA. He is a Californian. Click here to find out who it is …

ARTICLES

Made in China…

Danger Warning on Face Masks: Graphene

Health Canada finds that nanomaterial-containing face masks could pose a pulmonary threat. Here's what we know so far.
Commentary…

Next DOSH Chief a Crucial Pick

By: Kevin Thompson
Doug Parker is headed to Washington, D.C., to become Fed-OSHA chief. But another nominee – the next Cal/OSHA chief – looms big in the Golden State. Here's why it's so important.

Bill to Expand Cal/OSHA Powers

SB 606 would give Cal/OSHA the ability to enforce against so-called “egregious” employers. But the bill would do much more than that.

New DOSH Chief Counsel Named

The Division of Occupational Safety and Health has a new top attorney. Click here to see who it is and where she's coming from.

Fatality Case Settlements

When Cal/OSHA cites employers, the cases most often go to settlement talks. Here are the results of five fatality cases after negotiations.

Standards Board to Lift Construction Crane Rules into GISO

It's a huge regulatory proposal by Cal/OSHA, but it doesn't add new requirements and isn't estimated to cost any-thing. So what is behind the years-long effort to overhaul regulations for cranes and derricks in construction?

Exempt Cal/OSHA Regs from SRIAs?

There's no doubt that Standard Regulatory Impact Assessments have significantly slowed down the Cal/OSHA reg-ulatory process. But is that a good or a bad thing? A Southern California legislator says it's the latter, and here's what she proposes to do about it.

Paying Attention to Distracted Driving

New software gives employers a new tool to keep employees' minds on the road and on task. Here's how one Cali-fornia construction company successfully implemented this app.

CASES

GRANITE CONSTRUCTION COMPANY, INC. / GRANITE INDUSTRIAL, INC.

48 COR 40-8402 [¶23,103R]

CONTROL OF HAZARDOUS SUBSTANCES – DUSTS, FUMES, MISTS, VAPORS AND GASES, RESPIRATORY PROTECTION, PERMISSIBLE PRACTICE
Cal. Code Regs, tit. 8, § 5144(a)(1) (2021) – The Division established a serious violation of §5144(a)(1) because the breathing air was contaminated with harmful dusts; employees were exposed to harmful dusts; Employer’s engineering control measures did not control employee exposure to Valley Fever as far as feasible; and appropriate respirators were not used when effective engineering controls were not feasible to prevent atmospheric contamination. 

CONTROL OF HAZARDOUS SUBSTANCES – DUSTS, FUMES, MISTS, VAPORS AND GASES, RESPIRATORY PROTECTION, MEDICAL EVALUATION
Cal. Code Regs, tit. 8, § 5144(e)(1) (2021) – The Division established Employer did not provide medical evaluations before employees were fit tested or required to use respirators in the workplace. Because Employer required employees to use respirators in certain circumstances, the Appeals Board reversed the ALJ’s application of an exception to the safety order found in §5144(c) that provides employers are not required to include in a written respiratory protection program those employees whose only use of respirators involves the voluntary use of dust masks. 

CONTROL OF HAZARDOUS SUBSTANCES – DUSTS, FUMES, MISTS, VAPORS AND GASES, RESPIRATORY PROTECTION, TRAINING AND INFORMATION
Cal. Code Regs, tit. 8, § 5144(k)(5) (2021) – The Division failed to establish Employer did not provide training or retraining to employees who were required to use respirators. The Division inspector’s testimony that some employees were using bandanas in lieu of face masks was based on interviews other Division inspectors conducted with employees, not personal observation. 

CONSTRUCTION SAFETY ORDERS – GENERAL, INJURY AND ILLNESS PROTECTION PROGRAM (IIPP)
Cal. Code Regs, tit. 8, §§ 1509(a), 3202(a)(6) (2021) – The Division established Employer did not effectively implement its IIPP, due to its failure to effectively identify, evaluate, and correct workplace hazards relating to cocci spores, a serious violation. Employer had procedures in its IIPP and implemented some of them, but overall failed to correct unsafe or unhealthy working practices, procedures or conditions, such as by requiring employee use of respirators when effective engineering controls were not feasible to prevent atmospheric contamination.

Digest of COSHAB’s Decision After Reconsideration dated March 30, 2021, Inspection No. 1235643.

PAPICH CONSTRUCTION COMPANY, INC.

48 COR 40-8399 [¶23,102R]

CONTROL OF HAZARDOUS SUBSTANCES – DUSTS, FUMES, MISTS, VAPORS AND GASES, RESPIRATORY PROTECTION, PERMISSIBLE PRACTICE
Cal. Code Regs, tit. 8, § 5144(a)(1) (2021) – The Division established Employer did not require use of appropriate respirators to prevent exposure to cocci spores when engineering controls were not feasible to prevent disease, a serious violation.

CONSTRUCTION SAFETY ORDERS – GENERAL, INJURY AND ILLNESS PROTECTION PROGRAM (IIPP)
Cal. Code Regs, tit. 8, §§ 1509(a), 3203(a)(4) and (a)(6) (2021) – The Division established Employer did not effectively implement its IIPP related to its soil-disturbing activities where the soil may have contained cocci fungal spores. The violation was properly classified as repeat-serious.

CONTROL OF HAZARDOUS SUBSTANCES – DUSTS, FUMES, MISTS, VAPORS AND GASES, RESPIRATORY PROTECTION, MEDICAL EVALUATION
Cal. Code Regs, tit. 8, § 5144(e)(1) (2021) – The Division established Employer did not provide clear direction to employees as to when masks should be utilized, nor specifically required mask usage, when its engineering controls were not feasible to prevent atmospheric contamination by cocci fungal spores, a general violation. Employer was not entitled to application of the §5144(c) exception, which applies where respirator use is not required

CONTROL OF HAZARDOUS SUBSTANCES – DUSTS, FUMES, MISTS, VAPORS AND GASES, RESPIRATORY PROTECTION, TRAINING AND INFORMATION
Cal. Code Regs, tit. 8, § 5144(k)(5) (2021) – The Division did not establish Employer failed to retrain employees regarding proper respirator use to protect against cocci spores.

Digest of COSHAB’s Decision After Reconsideration dated March 26, 2021, Inspection No. 1236440.

 

MIDWEST ROOFING & SOLAR

48 COR 40-8395 [¶23,101R]

JURISDICTION – PETITION FOR RECONSIDERATION, INTERLOCUTORY
Labor Code § 6614 (2021) – Even if Employer’s petition for reconsideration raised questions of law, which the Appeals Board may rule on under an exception to the general rule that interlocutory matters are not appealable, the Board declined to reconsider the petition based on its merits.

 OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH APPEALS BOARD – TIME AND PLACE OF HEARING, VIDEO HEARINGS
Board reg. § 376(d) (2021) – The Appeals Board has authority to hold video hearings under its rules and procedures governing time and place of hearings. An executive order issued by the governor prohibited the Board from holding in-person hearings during the pendency of a state of emergency related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

 OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH APPEALS BOARD – TIME AND PLACE OF HEARING, DUE PROCESS
Board reg. § 376.1 (2021) – The Appeals Board rejected Employer’s contention that it had a constitutional right to an in-person administrative hearing. The Board held that a video/electronic hearing provided sufficient due process in the administrative context.

Digest of COSHAB’s Denial of Petition for Reconsideration dated March 23, 2021, Inspection No. 316347038.

JEFF ALEXANDER FARMING, DBA DEEP AG DEVELOPMENT COMPANY, ALEXANDER FARMS

48 COR 40-8390 [¶23,099R]

JURISDICTION – PETITION FOR RECONSIDERATION, INTERLOCUTORY
Labor Code § 6614 (2021) – Even if Employer’s petition for reconsideration raised questions of law, which the Appeals Board may rule on under an exception to the general rule that interlocutory matters are not appealable, the Board declined to reconsider the petition based on its merits.

OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH APPEALS BOARD – TIME AND PLACE OF HEARING, VIDEO HEARINGS
Board reg. § 376(d) (2021) – The Appeals Board has authority to hold video hearings under its rules and procedures governing time and place of hearings. An executive order issued by the governor prohibited the Board from holding in-person hearings during the pendency of a state of emergency related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH APPEALS BOARD – TIME AND PLACE OF HEARING, DUE PROCESS
Board reg. § 376.1 (2021) – The Appeals Board rejected Employer’s contention that it had a constitutional right to an in-person administrative hearing. The Board held that a video/electronic hearing provided sufficient due process in the administrative context.

Digest of COSHAB’s Denial of Petition for Reconsideration dated March 22, 2021, Inspection No. 1105855.

 

HATHAWAY DINWIDDIE CONSTRUCTION CO.

48 COR 40-8393 [¶23,100R]

JURISDICTION – PETITION FOR RECONSIDERATION, INTERLOCUTORY
Labor Code § 6614 (2021) – Even if Employer’s petition for reconsideration raised questions of law, which the Appeals Board may rule on under an exception to the general rule that interlocutory matters are not appealable, the Board declined to reconsider the petition based on its merits.

OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH APPEALS BOARD – TIME AND PLACE OF HEARING, VIDEO HEARINGS
Board reg. § 376(d) (2021) – The Appeals Board has authority to hold video hearings under its rules and procedures governing time and place of hearings. An executive order issued by the governor prohibited the Board from holding in-person hearings during the pendency of a state of emergency related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH APPEALS BOARD – TIME AND PLACE OF HEARING, DUE PROCESS
Board reg. § 376.1 (2021) – The Appeals Board rejected Employer’s contention that it had a constitutional right to an in-person administrative hearing. The Board held that a video/electronic hearing provided sufficient due process in the administrative context.

Digest of COSHAB’s Denial of Petition for Reconsideration dated March 23, 2021, Inspection No. 1410726.

U.S. PIPE AND FOUNDRY COMPANY

48 COR 40-8390 [¶23,098R]

JURISDICTION – PETITION FOR RECONSIDERATION
Labor Code § 6614(a) (2021) – The Appeals Board lacked jurisdiction to grant reconsideration over Employer’s untimely petition for reconsideration.

Digest of COSHAB’s Denial of Petition for Reconsideration dated March 23, 2021, Inspection No. 1331340.

CEDAR FAIR, LP DBA KNOTT’S BERRY FARM, LLC.

48 COR 40-8389 [¶23,097R]

JURISDICTION – PETITION FOR RECONSIDERATION
Labor Code § 6614(a) (2021) – The Appeals Board lacked jurisdiction to grant reconsideration over Employer’s untimely petition for reconsideration.

Digest of COSHAB’s Denial of Petition for Reconsideration dated March 22, 2021, Inspection No. 1326533.

ARROWHEAD BRASS AND PLUMBING, LLC.

48 COR 40-8389 [¶23,096R]

JURISDICTION – PETITION FOR RECONSIDERATION
Labor Code § 6614(a) (2021) – The Appeals Board lacked jurisdiction to grant reconsideration over Employer’s untimely petition for reconsideration.

Digest of COSHAB’s Denial of Petition for Reconsideration dated March 22, 2021, Inspection No. 1357982.