Although “OSHA inspection” may be a phrase to strike terror into the heart of a business owner, Beall Brewery Insurance points out that, for breweries following best production and safety practices, an OSHA inspection is nothing to fear.
After all, it’s an employer’s responsibility to provide a workplace free from serious recognized hazards. And to comply with standards, rules and regulations issued under the OSH Act.
In fact, it’s not very likely your brewery will be inspected by OSHA. (In fact, according to the Brewers Association, only 235 compliance inspections were performed in breweries Jan. 2005-March 2014.)
What could cause OSHA to inspect your brewery?
A poor safety record—catastrophes, fatalities, high injury rates—could do it. So could other people’s indications that your facility isn’t safe. Referrals from first responders, for instance, or employee complaints.
All of those are issues and situations any business owner works to avoid anyway. Certainly no brewery owner wants an employee to get hurt.
Aside from the very important task of ensuring a safe workplace, there are steps a brewery owner can take to prepare for an OSHA inspection.
How to Prepare for an OSHA Inspection
Choose your brewery representative carefully. The individual chosen to work with the OSHA compliance officer and facilitate the inspection should be familiar with OSHA regulations—and with brewery safety policies and procedures.
Confirm that your brewery has written safety programs that address issues including:
- Fire prevention and emergency action
- Lockout/ tagout
- Confined spaces
- IIPP (if required in your state)
- Hearing conservation
- Eye and hand safety
Confirm that your brewery complies with OSHA standards.
Clean the brewery! Resolve any slip/ trip/ fall hazards, for instance.
Your brewery should already have an employee training program in place. But if new hires still need training in safety procedures, provide it before the inspection.
Does your brewery need more support in ensuring safety on the job? Make sure you have a copy of the Beall Brewery Insurance Safety Guide—and consider working with the OSHA On-Site Consultation program.
For more than 25 years, Beall Financial and Insurance Services, Inc., has been helping corporations and individuals protect their most important assets. The agency’s client base covers a spectrum of niche businesses, such as craft breweries, that require specialized insurance packages and knowledge. With California offices in Redlands and Newport Beach, Beall Financial and Insurance Services serves clients nationwide.