Workplace Exam Rules
At each mining operation, a competent worker is required to inspect their work area for any safety issues before starting work. During this quick inspection, they should be looking for items that can cause you to slip, trip, and fall; items that can cause electrical shock; insufficient lighting; guarding not in place; and so forth – look for what may hurt you or others.
If a safety issue is found, the competent worker (the inspector) should attempt to mitigate the issue if they can; if unable to take care of the issue, the inspector needs to notify management of the issue so the area can be made safe either by the removal of the hazard, or the barricading of all access to the hazard until the issue can be resolved.
In addition to the requirement to inspect the work area before starting work, MSHA requires the inspector to make a record of the exam. The record must contain:
• Name of the inspector – must be legibly written.
• Date of the examination.
• Location of the examination. Be specific on the location, such as: “Main Compressor Room” instead of “Plant” – did you inspect the entire Plant?
• Description of all hazardous item found, even if mitigated.
Now, once the exam has been documented, then you will turn the exam in to your supervisor (or site-contact) so that it can be filed away for the period of one-year. If a safety issue is listed on the exam that had not been mitigated, your supervisor (or site-contact) will address the issue. Once the issue is addressed, they will date the examination record and file with the Safety Department.
The link below is a suggested form to use for performing work area safety inspections; however, if you are using another form, it will work just as well as long as it has the required information.
1. Inspect your area before beginning work,
2. Mitigate any issues found,
3. Document the inspection,
4. Turn-In to your supervisor or plant contact
5. Be Safe!