OSHA Issues Directive on Communicating with Family Following a Workplace Fatality

Under the new directive, OSHA representatives will contact the victim's family to explain the investigation process and timeline and provide the family with updates throughout the investigation.

A new OSHA directive guides OSHA representatives in communicating investigation procedures with family members following a workplace fatality. The guidance is geared to ensure that OSHA representatives speak to the worker's family early in the inspection process, establish a point of contact, and maintain a working relationship with the family.

"OSHA is committed to working with families to explain the circumstances surrounding the deaths of their loved ones," said Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health, Dr. David Michaels. "This directive ensures that OSHA receives the necessary information from the family to assist in the investigation and keeps the family informed throughout the investigation and settlement processes."

Under the new directive, OSHA representatives will contact the victim's family to explain the investigation process and timeline and provide the family with updates throughout the investigation. Once the investigation is closed, OSHA will explain findings to the family and address any questions. If an employer has been issued citations, OSHA will provide a copy of the citation(s) to the family.

More information about the new directive is available on OSHA's directive page, http://www.osha.gov/OshDoc/Directive_pdf/CPL_02-00-153.pdf.

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