You may defend against a citation
by showing that:
- You lacked knowledge of the violation.
- No employees were exposed to a hazard.
- The violation was caused by an unanticipated employee violation of your
- Compliance with the standard would have created a greater hazard to
- Compliance with the standard was impossible or not feasible.
Defenses to a general duty violation. In order to establish that it
was the employee's misconduct and not you who is responsible for a citation
under the general
duty clause, you must show that:
- The employee violated a well-enforced work rule.
- The worker's conduct could not be predicted.
- The conduct could not be prevented.
The clause requires employers in all types of business to take OSHA seriously
and to carefully maintain safety and health compliance.
Did You Know?
- Employers have been penalized even when employees
deliberately violated safety rules because the employer did
not consistently enforce discipline for safety violations or
provided inadequate training.
- Employers are responsible for the acts of supervisors even
though they have no knowledge or may not approve after the
fact of a supervisor's actions. Thus a supervisor who fails
to prohibit unsafe practices is condoning the unsafe
practice and the company is responsible.