Archive Notice - OSHA Archive

NOTICE: This is an OSHA Archive Document, and may no longer represent OSHA Policy. It is presented here as historical content, for research and review purposes only.

OSHA requirements are set by statute, standards and regulations. Our interpretation letters explain these requirements and how they apply to particular circumstances, but they cannot create additional employer obligations. This letter constitutes OSHA's interpretation of the requirements discussed. Note that our enforcement guidance may be affected by changes to OSHA rules. Also, from time to time we update our guidance in response to new information. To keep apprised of such developments, you can consult OSHA's website at

November 19, 1992

Mr. Shawn L. O'Mara
Country Fresh Environmental
and Safety Coordinator
2555 Buchanan Avenue S.W.
P.O. Box 814
Grand Rapids, Michigan 49518-0814

Dear Mr. O'Mara:

Thank you for your inquiry of October 13, requesting an interpretation of the term "in near proximity" with respect to 29 CFR 1910.151(b).

In areas where accidents resulting in suffocation, severe bleeding, or other life threatening injury or illness can reasonably be expected, a 3 to 4 minute response time, from time of injury to time of administering first aid, is required. In other circumstances, i.e., where a life-threatening injury is an unlikely outcome of an accident, a 15 minute response time is acceptable.

If employees work in areas where public emergency transportation is not available, the employer must make provision for acceptable emergency transportation.

We appreciate your interest in employee safety and health. If we can be of further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us.


Roger A. Clark,
Directorate of Compliance Programs