Tips To Follow When an OSHA Inspector Arrives in Your Practice
The moment you have come to fear is here – an OSHA inspector just walked into your office and is here to do an audit. What do you do?
First off, try your best not to panic. Here are some tips for handling the inspection as it occurs:
Ask for proof of identification. This may sound a bit odd, but some people actually try to impersonate OSHA inspectors to collect money from offices. Before you go through the inspection, take a look at their badge to make sure they are who they say they are.
Know who the Safety Officer is. Hopefully your employees have it engrained in them who the Safety Officer is for your practice. OSHA inspectors can ask any employee questions about the practice, but it is perfectly appropriate for an employee to excuse themselves to find the person in charge and with the most knowledge in this area. (Side note: Employees do have the right to decline to be interviewed). Make sure you have a backup in place in case the Safety Officer happens to be out of the office that day!
Don’t keep them waiting. Be polite and respectful of their time. If you keep the inspector waiting it may be interpreted to them as a sign of refusal to work with them and noncompliance.
Don’t turn them away. They will be back and there are increased odds they will look at everything. On the opposite end of this, don’t overly share everything about the practice. Share information that they request to complete their inspection, but sharing more than necessary can open up the inspection to more areas.
Document! Someone, preferably the Safety Officer should accompany the inspector during the inspection and document what the inspector says.
If an OSHA Inspector comes to your office, take a deep breath, and remember to follow these tips.
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