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OSHA Unveils its Top 10 List

The total number for all 10 citations on the list is 40,463. That's about 4,200 fewer than last year's top 10.

Number 10:
Ladders - 2,054 citations

Comment: Congratulations to Ladders for being the only newcomer to crack the Top 10. All of the other nine standards were repeats from last year.

Number 9:
Electrical, General Requirements - 2,120 citations

Comment: Electrical was in ninth last year, too.

Number 8:
Machine Guarding, General Requirements - 2,743 citations

Comment: This has been a slightly disappointing season for Machine Guarding which was in seventh place last year at this time. The number of violations citing this standard also fell from 3,245 in 2004.

Number 7:
Electrical Wiring Methods, Components, and Equipment for General Use - 2,785 citations

Comment: Wiring fell one place and 552 citations from last year.

Number 6:
Powered Industrial Trucks - 2,871 citations

Comment: A comer, jumping two places from last year.

Number 5:
Lockout/Tagout - 3,711 citations

Comment: This perennial powerhouse dropped one spot from last year.

Number 4:
Respiratory Protection - 3,904 citations

Comment: Finished fifth last year.

Number 3:
Fall Protection, General Requirements - 5,504 citations

Comment: Won the bronze medal last year, too.

Number 2:
Hazard Communication - 6,641 citations

Comment: Always the bridesmaid, never the bride, Haz Com has made a habit of finishing second.

The award for the standard most often cited in OSHA violations goes to:

Number 1:
Scaffolding, General Requirements - 8,130 citations

Comment: Scaffolding has become the New York Yankees of OSHA standards, establishing a three-year dynasty that nobody seems likely to challenge any time soon.


On a serious note, the Scaffolding three-peat is a reflection of three things:

  • The disproportionate number of construction sites included in the OSHA list of priority enforcement targets;
  • The high incidence of fall injuries; and
  • The complexity of the scaffolding standard itself.