Fall protection tops OSHA violations list…again

When it comes to Billboard music charts, BCS standings and most top ten lists, the number one spot is where you strive to be. When it comes to OSHA’s top ten list of violations, the number one spot spells bad news—for employers and workers.

For the second year in a row, fall protection has topped OSHA’s list of top violations, with more than 7,200.  This total is almost twice the number of violations for the second place category, hazard communication.  In fact, fall protection is trending up, having risen from third, to second, and now first place.

Clearly, there is work to be done to reduce risk for workers at heights. Here are three simple things you can do to help in properly addressing fall protection issues.

  1. Educate yourself.  There are countless industry publications, technical papers, and online resources you can access quickly and economically. For starters, review our previous fall protection webinars here or subscribe to this blog for regular updates.
  2. Attend an industry event related to fall protection.  Many regional and national conferences are focusing on fall protection topics, due to a current regulatory focus on the topic.  As president of the International Society for Fall Protection, I’d also encourage you to attend the ISFP Symposium, which will be held in conjunction with ASSE’s Safety 2013 in Las Vegas in June.
  3. Get training for you and your people. Only knowledgeable people can make good decisions about fall protection, so this can’t be shortchanged.  LJB’s blended online-classroom training minimizes the time and travel burden of training.

For our first webinar of 2013, I will be presenting the Top 5 Ways to Reduce Fall Protection Risk, which will give you actionable ways to evaluate your risk and improve your fall protection program.

It sounds strange to say, but here’s hoping that fall protection is not number one next year. Maybe someday, it will be off the Top 10 list altogether.


  1. Thanks for the article, and I think that the main thing that a lot people skip over or think that’s not as important is being able to educate yourself on the subject of the matter. Because osha training requirements require you to be very well educated in the certain subject.

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