More help for getting OSHA variances

by on December 11, 2012 · 0 Comment POSTED IN: Workplace Safety Network

If you need a variance from OSHA standards, you may want to check out OSHA’s upgraded variance page to learn whether or not a similar case has received approval.

The upgraded page includes why applications were denied; previously, OSHA only posted successful variance cases – so you know what worked, but not what didn’t.

Background: You can request a variance for many reasons, including not being able to fully comply on time with a new safety or health standard because of a shortage of personnel, materials or equipment. You may prefer to use methods, equipment or facilities that they believe protect workers as well as, or better than, OSHA standards.

OSHA may grant a variance to employers, “when they can prove that their proposed methods, conditions, practices, operations, or processes provide workplaces that are at least as safe and healthful as the workplaces provided by the OSHA standards from which they are seeking the variance.”

Note: OSHA doesn’t grant exemptions – only variances under specific conditions. The Web page includes background on variance rules, application instructions and variance facts sheets.


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