Before discussing the biggest regulations surrounding 2019, it’s important to take a look back at the major regulations of 2018, as they provide a major thread into the new year. Last year’s regulatory measures were heavily focused on employee protection programs. For instance, training for less workplace risks and improved workplace safety behaviors, and other EHS rules to strengthen silica enforcement standards for construction workers, and strengthened heat-safety measures for indoor workers. This year, occupational health and safety and employee training regulations lead the way in regulatory trends. Additionally, there will be a pick-up in environmental standards. Here’s a look into the 2019 EHS regulations to watch, as well as a regulatory compliance tracking software solution that can help you address them.
Occupational Health & Safety Regulations to Watch
• Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses. OSHA is moving forward with a proposal to remove provisions that require employers with 250 or more employees to electronically submit injury and illness data from OSHA Form 300 (Log of Work-Related Injury and Illnesses) and Form 301 (Injury and Illness Incident Report). Under the proposal, employers would be required to submit only data from the OSHA Form 300A (Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses). This rule was proposed in July 2018 and a Final Rule is expected in June 2019.
• New Weighting System to Measure and Prioritize Crane Operation Enforcement. In 2019, OSHA will use a new weighting system to measure and prioritize its enforcement and other essential activities. A key focus for the upcoming year is identifying and addressing trenching and excavation hazards in construction; the agency’s goal is to abate 1,400 of these hazards in fiscal year 2019.
• 3 New Fit Test Protocols for Respirators. OSHA will evaluate three new quantitative fit test protocols for respirators. If the new fit test protocols are deemed appropriate, OSHA will adopt them into Appendix A of the Respiratory Protection Standard at 29 CFR 1910.134. The agency plans to have a Final Rule ready in December 2018.
Environmental Regulations to Watch
• National Primary Drinking Water Regulations for Lead and Copper. In early 2019 the EPA plans to update to the Lead and Copper Rule (LCR). The LCR was introduced in 1991 and aims to reduce risks to drinking water consumers from lead and copper that can enter drinking water as a result of corrosion of plumbing materials. Recent lead crises such as those in Flint, Michigan, Washington, D.C., and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, have brought about the need to revise the rule. The administration notes that there is a “compelling need to modernize and strengthen implementation of the rule—to strengthen its public health protections and to clarify its implementation requirements to make it more effective and readily enforceable.”
• Clean Water Act—Section 401 State Certification Procedures. In March 2019, the EPA will consider updating the Section 401 certification process procedures to promote nationwide consistency and regulatory certainty for states, permit applicants, and other stakeholders. Section 401 of the Clean Water Act (CWA) provides states the ability to certify any activity which may result in any discharge into the nation’s navigable waters. This allows states to ensure that permits issued in Washington do not negatively impact water quality at a farm in Kentucky, a lake in New York, or a city in California. Unfortunately, there have been several attempts made to restrict state’s authority under 401, despite having been reaffirmed via several Supreme Court decisions.
Regulatory Compliance Tracking Software
• Gensuite offers Regulatory Compliance Tracking Software as your one-source reference for changes to applicable regulations (new and current) by jurisdiction and topic, with updates on a defined regulatory review frequency (typically monthly). The Gensuite Reg Tracker application integrates with Gensuite Action Tracking System and Compliance Calendar. All core application features are augmented by flexible configuration options and powerful extension modules.
The 2019 year will provide the Environmental, Health, Safety and Occupational industries with several new areas to look out for in regards to regulatory needs. Stay up-to-date and in compliance with the 2019 EHS regulations with proper Regulatory Compliance Tracking software. Contact a Gensuite representative today.