Cal/OSHA Cites and Fines Employers for COVID-19 Violations

The California Department of Industrial Relations recently issued a News Release (Number 2020-76) reporting that Cal/OSHA has cited and fined 11 employers for not protecting employees from Covid-19 exposure.  The employers were cited for various violations, including some classified as serious, with monetary penalties ranging from $2,025 to $51,190.

Although the industries involved were food processing, meatpacking, health care, agriculture, retail and not construction, it is nevertheless important to note that most of the citations for not protecting workers from exposure to Covid-19 were because the employers had not taken steps to update their workplace safety plans “to properly address hazards related to the virus”.

Other violations included not ensuring that workers were physically distanced, not implementing procedures to screen employees and visitors arriving at the worksite and failing to take appropriate measures for employees who exhibited Covid-19 symptoms.

The point of this Memorandum is to remind our Contractors of the importance of keeping their Injury and Illness Prevention Program and Site Specific Health and Safety Plan updated to comply with the most recent guidance from Cal/OSHA and the Calif. Dept. of Public Health (CDPH). To facilitate this review, attached is the updated Cal/OSHA-CDPH Covid-19 General Checklist for Construction Employers.

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