Chapter 4167-8 Inspection Procedures

4167-8-01 Inspection procedures.

(A) Authority for inspections.

(1) The superintendent shall conduct inspections and investigations under the following circumstances:

(a) A request to do so from a public employee or public employee representative pursuant to rule 4167-2-02 of the Administrative Code;

(b) A refusal to work notification pursuant to rule 4167-2-01 of the Administrative Code;

(c) A request to do so from a public employer pursuant to division (B)(2) of section 4167.10 of the Revised Code;

(d) Upon the superintendent's own initiative, pursuant to section 4121.37 of the Revised Code.

(2) The superintendent shall conduct all requested or required inspections within a reasonable amount of time following receipt of the request or the notification.

(B) The superintendent shall determine which Ohio risk reduction standards apply in conducting inspections and investigations.

(C) Conduct of inspections.

(1) The superintendent shall inspect and investigate any plant, facility, establishment, construction site, area, workplace, or environment where work is being performed by a public employee of a public employer, and all pertinent conditions, structures, machines, apparatus, devices, equipment, and materials therein.

(2) Inspections shall take place at such times and in such places as the superintendent may direct.

(a) The conduct of inspections shall be such as to preclude unreasonable disruption of the operations of the employer's establishment.

(b) At the beginning of an inspection, compliance officers shall present their credentials to the employer or the employer's agent in charge at the establishment; explain the nature and purpose of the inspection; and indicate the scope of the inspection and the records they wish to review as required under rule 4167-6-08 of the Administrative Code and other documents and records relevant to the inspection or investigation.

(c) Compliance officers designated by the superintendent shall have the authority to:

(i) Take environmental samples, take or obtain photographs related to the purpose of the inspection, and conduct tests and other studies reasonably calculated to serve the purposes of the inspection or investigation.

(a) As used in this rule, "take environmental samples" includes, but is not limited to, the use of devices to measure employee exposures and the attachment of personal sampling equipment such as dosimeters, pumps, badges and other similar devices to employees in order to measure their exposures.

(b) In taking photographs and samples, compliance officers shall take reasonable precautions to insure that such actions with flash, spark-producing, or other equipment would not be hazardous. Compliance officers shall comply with all employer safety and health rules and practices at the establishment being inspected, and they shall wear and use appropriate protective clothing and equipment.

(ii) Provide public employee representatives the opportunity to accompany an inspection and to consult with the compliance officer regarding workplace safety, to interview employees and public employee representatives in private, and to provide employees and public employee representatives participation in a closing conference.

(iii) Administer oaths and require, by subpoena, the attendance and testimony of witnesses and the production of evidence under oath.

(a) Witnesses shall receive the same fees and mileage provided for witnesses in civil cases in the court of common pleas.

(b) In the case of contumacy, failure, or refusal of any person to comply with an order or any subpoena lawfully issued, or upon the refusal of any witness to testify to any matter regarding which he may lawfully be interrogated, a judge of the court of common pleas of any county in this state, on the application of the superintendent, shall issue an order requiring the person to appear and to produce evidence if, as, and when so ordered, and to give testimony relating to the matter under investigation or in question. The court may punish any failure to obey the order of the court as a contempt thereof.

(d) At the conclusion of an inspection, the compliance officer shall confer with the employer or the employer's representative, informally advising of any apparent safety or health violations disclosed by the inspection. During such conference, the employer shall be afforded an opportunity to bring to the attention of the compliance officer any pertinent information regarding conditions in the workplace.

(e) All information obtained by the superintendent in connection with any investigation that is confidential or a trade secret may not be disclosed in violation of rule 4167-10-01 of the Administrative Code.

Replaces: Part of 4167-8-01

Effective: 01/01/2014
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 11/01/2018
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 4121.12 , 4121.121 , 4167.02 , 4167.07
Rule Amplifies: 4167.10
Prior Effective Dates: 3/20/95, 11/15/96, 1/17/99, 8/15/01, 2/15/09

4167-8-02 Finding of imminent danger.

(A) If, during an inspection or investigation, the superintendent finds any condition or practice which presents an imminent danger to the safety and health of a public employee, the superintendent shall issue a "notice of imminent danger."

(1) The public employer shall immediately post the notice, or a clearly legible copy thereof, at or near each place the violation referenced in the notice exists or occurred.

(2) Citations shall be posted in areas accessible to public employees and/or public employee representatives, but need not be posted in areas accessible to the public.

(3) A public employer shall seek the approval of the superintendent to post citations in locations other than those at the site of a violation.

(B) If, during an inspection or investigation, the superintendent finds any condition or practice in any place of employment that presents a substantial probability that the condition or practice could result in death or serious physical harm, after notifying the employer of the intent to issue an order, the superintendent shall issue, after consultation with the administrator and upon recommendation by the administrator, an order prohibiting the employment of any public employee or any continuing operation or process under such condition or practice until necessary steps are taken to correct or remove the condition or practice.

(1) The order shall not be effective for more than fifteen days.

(2) To extend such an order, the superintendent shall petition the court of common pleas to extend the order and to require corrective action by the employer.

(3) Any party may appeal to a court of common pleas any order of the superintendent under this rule within thirty days of the issuance of the order.

Replaces: Parts of 4167-8-01

Effective: 01/01/2014
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 11/01/2018
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 4121.12 , 4121.121 , 4167.02 , 4167.07
Rule Amplifies: 4167.10
Prior Effective Dates: 3/20/95, 11/15/96, 1/17/99, 8/15/01, 2/15/09

4167-8-03 Citations.

(A) The superintendent shall, with reasonable promptness, issue a citation to any public employer that, upon inspection or investigation, the superintendent finds has violated any of the following:

(1) An Ohio employment risk reduction standard;

(2) An order issued upon a finding of imminent danger pursuant to rule 4167-8-02 of the Administrative Code;

(3) An order to abate a violation issued pursuant to this rule.

(B) The superintendent may, upon inspection or investigation, issue a notice of violation to any public employer that the superintendent believes has violated rules of this chapter that have no direct effect or immediate relationship to safety or health.

(C) Citations issued under this rule shall:

(1) Be issued in writing;

(2) Describe with particularity the nature of the alleged violation, including a reference to the provision of law, Ohio employment risk reduction standard, rule, or order alleged to have been violated;

(3) State that the issuance of a citation does not constitute a finding that a violation of the act has occurred unless there is a failure to contest as provided for in the act, or if contested, unless the citation is affirmed;

(4) Be issued within six months following the date of the final occurrence of the alleged violation;

(5) Fix a time for the abatement of the alleged violation pursuant to rule 4167-5-01 of the Administrative Code;

(6) Be sent to the public employer by certified mail, return receipt requested.

(D) Upon receipt of any citation issued under this rule, the public employer shall immediately post the citation, or a clearly legible copy thereof, at or near each place an alleged violation referred to in the citation occurred.

(1) Citations shall be posted in areas accessible to public employees and/or public employee representatives, but need not be posted in areas accessible to the public.

(2) A public employer shall seek the approval of the superintendent to post citations in locations other than those at the site of a violation.

(E) At the request of an affected employer, employee, representative of employees, or upon the superintendent's own motion, the superintendent will hold an informal conference for the purpose of discussing any issues raised by an inspection, citation, or notice of intention to contest.

(1) If the conference is requested by the employer, an affected employee or his representative may be afforded an opportunity to participate, at the discretion of the superintendent.

(2) When the complainant is an employee and/or an employee representative, the complainant may be given the opportunity to participate in the conference.

(3) Any party may be represented by counsel at such conference.

(4) No such conference or request for such conference shall operate as a stay of any fourteen calendar day period for filing a notice of intention to contest as prescribed in rule 4167-14-01 of the Administrative Code.

(F) A citation shall be deemed a final order fourteen days after the employer's receipt of the citation, unless the employer elects to contest the citation pursuant to rules 4167-14-01 to 4167-14-03 of the Administrative Code. If the employer contests the citation, the order shall become final when either:

(1) The employer chooses not to appeal an adverse decision within the timeframe the employer is permitted to do so under rules 4167-14-01 and 4167-14-02 of the Administrative Code; or

(2) The employer has exhausted all administrative remedies and a final decision is issued by the court of common pleas.

Replaces: Parts of 4167-8-01and 4167-14-01

Effective: 01/01/2014
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 11/01/2018
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 4121.12 , 4121.121 , 4167.02 , 4167.07
Rule Amplifies: 4167.10
Prior Effective Dates: 3/20/95, 11/15/96, 1/17/99, 8/15/01, 2/15/09