As Israeli companies continue to expand globally and acquire operations in the United States, a proactive approach to safety and health in the workplace is critical. The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSH Act), which regulates the safety and health of workplace conditions in the United States, and the agency charged with its enforcement, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), have significantly broader reach than Israel’s Work Safety Ordinance (New Version). In addition to regulating workplaces within the maritime and agricultural industries, OSHA regulates workplace conditions at both construction and non-construction facilities. The OSH Act has jurisdiction over nearly every type of industry in which global Israeli companies typically operate, including industrial, environmental, retail, and manufacturing. Further, OSHA’s regulations cover a myriad of non-construction workplace hazards, including training, emergency planning, environmental control, ventilation, respiration, noise and heat exposure, hazardous and toxic chemicals, hazardous waste, personal protective equipment, the control of hazardous energy, materials handling, machine guarding, electrical hazards, and more. Moreover, in recent months, OSHA has expanded and updated its regulatory framework, resulting in increased penalty amounts, new and extensive injury reporting and recording requirements, and increased scrutiny of individual corporate agents and potential criminal referrals.

Many workplace accidents are preventable if a company exhibits a commitment to workplace safety, conducts proper and thorough workplace hazard analyses, and takes reasonable steps to address and remedy issues where technologically and financially feasible. When ignored, workplace hazards may cost a company far more. Accordingly, companies should consider involving experienced OSHA counsel to prevent issues in the first place, and throughout the investigation process.

Read the full GT ADVISORY “Navigating US Workplace Safety and Health Compliance: Insights for Israeli Companies Acquiring a US Facility”