WASHINGTON: Safety citations will require immediate corrections
Employers generally will be required to promptly correct unsafe conditions even while they are in the process of appealing safety citations, under a new law signed by Governor Gregoire. Currently, the time clock for correcting unsafe conditions doesn’t start ticking until any appeals have worked their way through the system. The new law changes that approach for any violations that are labeled as serious, willful, repeated serious, or failure to abate a serious violation by the Washington Department of Labor and Industries (L&I). Employers who choose to appeal a citation will have the option of asking L&I and the Board of Industrial Insurance Appeals to hold off on enforcement during the appeal, but the law directs the agencies to deny the request if death or serious physical harm is likely. The new law will take effect 90 days after the legislature adjourns (SSB 5068, 2011 Wash Laws, Ch. 91).
Tips: Contact your Vigilant safety representative if L&I pays you a visit. Better yet, ask Vigilant for an on-site review of your safety compliance, so you can ensure your house is in order before L&I comes knocking. In the event of a fatality or hospitalization, you must promptly report the incident to L&I. For more information, see our Legal Guide, “Catastrophe/Fatality Notification Procedure” (3576).
This website presents general information in nontechnical language. This information is not legal advice. Before applying this information to a specific management decision, consult legal counsel.