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Final Policy Concerning the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's Treatment of Voluntary Employer Safety and Health Self-Audits

Federal Register, July 28, 2000, Page 46498


Department of Labor, Occupational Health and Safety Administration


Notice of final policy.


The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has developed a final policy describing the Agency's treatment of voluntary employer self-audits that assess workplace safety and health conditions, including compliance with the Occupational Safety and Health Act (Act). The policy provides that the Agency will not routinely request self-audit reports at the initiation of an inspection, and the Agency will not use self-audit reports as a means of identifying hazards upon which to focus during an inspection. In addition, where a voluntary self-audit identifies a hazardous condition, and the employer has corrected the violative condition prior to the initiation of an inspection (or a related accident, illness, or injury that triggers the OSHA inspection) and has taken appropriate steps to prevent the recurrence of the condition, the Agency will refrain from issuing a citation, even if the violative condition existed within the six month limitations period during which OSHA is authorized to issue citations. Where a voluntary self-audit identifies a hazardous condition, and the employer promptly undertakes appropriate measures to correct the violative condition and to provide interim employee protection, but has not completely corrected the violative condition when an OSHA inspection occurs, the Agency will treat the audit report as evidence of good faith, and not as evidence of a willful violation of the Act.

Further Information

Richard E. Fairfax, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Directorate of Compliance Programs, Room N-3603, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20210, Telephone: 202-693-2100.