During the height of the novel coronavirus’ (COVID-19) outbreak in China, the country isolated Wuhan to contain the spread of the virus. As global cases of COVID-19 cases have skyrocketed during the last several weeks, Italy, Spain, and France have imposed a similar strict quarantine of all residents. We are now starting to see similar measures being imposed here in the United States on a localized basis.
North Carolina law requires employers with a workers’ compensation experience rate modifier (“ERM”) of 1.5 or higher to “establish and carry out a safety and health program to reduce or eliminate hazards and to prevent injuries and illnesses to employees.” Not just any program, however, will comply with the statutory requirements.
The changes to MSHA’s workplace examination rule governing metal and nonmetal mines have garnered significant attention. Stakeholders fought back against the original proposed rulemaking, and MSHA delayed implementation three times. Following outcries from operators, numerous comments, and even litigation, on April 9, 2018, MSHA published its final amended regulation governing “Examinations of Working Places in Metal and Nonmetal Mines.”
Nearly 2.3 million people in the United States work in jobs that expose them to silica. The Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) claims that more than 100,000 of those workers are engaged in “high risk jobs such as abrasive blasting, foundry work, stonecutting, rock drilling, quarry work and tunneling.”