OSHA Severe Violator Enforcement Program (SVEP) Changes
On September 15, 2022, OSHA announced that it was expanding the criteria for placement in the Severe Violator Enforcement Program (SVEP) to improve compliance with workplace safety standards. The changes will broaden the program’s scope.
Employers will be placed in SVEP if OSHA finds two willful or repeated violations or issues failure-to-abate notices based on the presence of serious violations. The program criteria have been expanded to include all hazards and OSHA standards. Follow-up inspections will be made one year – but not longer than two years – after the final order.
Employers may be removed from the program three years after entering it if the employer has abated all SVEP-related hazards. If an employer wishes to reduce the amount of time in the program to two years, they must agree to an enhanced settlement agreement and implement a safety and health management system with the seven basic elements in OSHA’s Recommended Practices for Safety and Health Programs.
SVEP applies when a case meets at least one of the following criteria:
- A fatality/catastrophe inspection where OSHA finds at least one willful or repeated violation or issues a failure-to-abate notice based on a serious violation directly related to an employee death, or to an incident causing three or more employee hospitalizations.
- An inspection where OSHA finds at least two willful or repeated violations or issues failure-to-abate notices (or any combination of these violations/notices), based on the presence of high gravity serious violations.
- All egregious (e.g., per instance citations) enforcement actions shall be considered SVEP cases.
Note that under OSHA’s multi-employer citation policy, a general contractor may be cited for the same violations as other contractors and may also qualify for SVEP. Also, an employer can qualify for SVEP even if none of its employees were exposed to hazards.
For more information on the updated policy, see the full directive.
American Contractors Organization can help keep you updated on the latest OSHA requirements. If you aren’t a member, join today.