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OSHA has officially withdrawn a proposed rule that would have changed how the agency operated its On-site Consultation Program for worksites, including those that have Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP) status. The agency withdrew the rule after reviewing comments, including those submitted by ABC and the Coalition for Workplace Safety (CWS). 

In the comments, ABC expressed concern the rule would have exposed On-site Consultation Program participants to a greater likelihood of enforcement if hazards were discovered during consultation visits, eliminating a key incentive for program participation and reducing the number of companies that choose to participate.

Under the proposed rule, any allegations of potential workplace hazards or violations from any source, including state or local health departments or the media, could terminate an onsite consultation visit and turn it into an enforcement visit.  In addition, OSHA would be able to inspect all sites within an industry when “workplace accidents occur that generate widespread public concern about a hazard or substance,” even if those sites were normally exempt due to their status in the On-site Consultation or SHARP programs.