Many employers worry about compliance. They want to make sure they do what it takes to keep government agencies like OSHA at bay. However, compliance and safety aren’t the same thing.

For example, a company accused of violating OSHA’s General Duty Clause in a fatal forklift under-ride incident has proven in court that it was actually compliant with a specific forklift standard, leading the court to vacate the citation.

By proving it was compliant with 29 CFR 1910.178, Chewy Inc. was able to get the General Duty Clause violation vacated by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit.

However, as safety professionals know, compliance with a safety standard is the absolute minimum expected under law. For those employers who want to see their workers go home safe every day, compliance is simply a starting point.

While Chewy’s forklift safety efforts met OSHA’s standards according to the appeals court, the bottom line is that the company experienced one serious under-ride injury and one under-ride fatality leading to the citation.

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About the Author

Jon Knight

Jon Knight leads the NASP Team’s media creation department. He has been involved with workplace safety training since 2017 with a focus on course creation. He also provides video production and voiceovers for NASP content.
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