US Dept of Labor

Occupational Safety & Health AdministrationWe Can Help

OSHA News Release - (Archived) Table of Contents
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NOTICE: This is an OSHA Archive Document, and may no longer represent OSHA Policy. It is presented here as historical content, for research and review purposes only.
Trade News Release Banner Image


National News Release: 04-2553-NAT
Dec. 30, 2004
Contact: Frank Meilinger
Phone: (202) 693-1999


OSHA to Issue Final Rule on Standards Improvement Process

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) will publish a final rule in the Jan. 5, 2005, Federal Register on the second phase of its standards improvement project. The project addresses inconsistent, duplicative or outdated provisions in OSHA's safety and health standards for general industry, maritime and construction.

"These changes will reduce the regulatory burdens on employers while maintaining the safety and health protections afforded to employees," said OSHA Administrator John Henshaw. "These burdens produce no safety and health value and once eliminated will reduce annual costs by more than $6.8 million. That's a winning combination for us all."

The final rule revises or eliminates medical provisions in older standards that were once considered accepted practice, but have since been deemed obsolete or unnecessary in current medical practice. For example, annual rather than semi-annual medical examinations will now be required for long-term employees exposed to inorganic arsenic, coke oven emissions, and vinyl chloride.

In addition, the final rule eliminates reporting requirements that have failed to benefit employee health. For example, employers will no longer have to notify OSHA of all workplace releases for certain specified carcinogens. In addition, while employers are still required to establish regulated work areas for vinyl chloride, inorganic arsenic, acrylonitrile, and for the 13 known occupational carcinogens, they will no longer be required to notify OSHA each time they do so.

The final rule updates chemical exposure provisions by making them consistent in terms of the frequency of monitoring and the manner of employee notification of monitoring results.

Employers are responsible for providing a safe and healthful workplace for their employees. OSHA's role is to assure the safety and health of America's workers by setting and enforcing standards; providing training, outreach, and education; establishing partnerships, and encouraging continual improvement in workplace safety and health. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.

# # #


This news release text is on the Internet at http://www.osha.gov. Information on this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: (202) 693-1999.
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 News Release - (Archived) Table of Contents

Thank You for Visiting Our Website

You are exiting the Department of Labor's Web server.

The Department of Labor does not endorse, takes no responsibility for, and exercises no control over the linked organization or its views, or contents, nor does it vouch for the accuracy or accessibility of the information contained on the destination server. The Department of Labor also cannot authorize the use of copyrighted materials contained in linked Web sites. Users must request such authorization from the sponsor of the linked Web site. Thank you for visiting our site. Please click the button below to continue.

Close