Murchison & Cumming LLP

Nevada OSHA Provides Guidance for Businesses in Phase 2

June 22, 2020

By: Steven Washington

On May 28, 2020 Governor Steve Sisolak announced the release of Declaration of Emergency Directive #021, which initiates the Phase 2 re-opening of some non-essential business within Nevada.

All essential and non-essential businesses operating in Phase 2 must adopt measures promulgated by the Nevada State Occupational Safety and Health Administration (NV OSHA) to minimize the risk of spread of COVID-19, including social distancing and sanitation measures, and abide by all other guidance promulgated pursuant to the Phase 2 directive. Businesses may adopt additional practices that exceed the standards imposed; but no business may opt out of complying with Emergency Directives and the NV OSHA or LEAP guidelines.

NV OSHA provides that the following measures are required of each business and should be applied to all employees of that business.

General Operations:

  • All employers must provide face coverings for employees assigned to serving the public and shall require these employees to wear the face coverings.
  • Close or limit access to common areas where employees are likely to congregate and interact.
  • Promote frequent and thorough hand washing, including providing workers, customers, and worksite visitors with a place to wash their hands. If soap and running water are not immediately available, provide alcohol-based hand rubs containing at least 60% alcohol.
  • Maintain regular housekeeping practices, including routine cleaning and disinfecting of surfaces and equipment with Environmental Protection Agency - approved cleaning chemicals from List N or that have label claims against the coronavirus.
  • Provide sanitation and cleaning supplies for addressing common surfaces in multiple user mobile equipment and multiple user tooling.
  • Conduct daily surveys of changes to staff/labor health conditions. NV OSHA is emphasizing the need for business leadership to be working with and aware of the health and well-being of its staff.
  • Ensure that any identified first responders in the labor force are provided and use the needed Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and equipment for protection from communicable or infections disease.
  • Provide access to potable and sanitary water.


NV OSHA will enforce any guidance that is produced by the State of Nevada. Certain industries may have additional “mandatory” measures that apply to that industry, these industries will want to be sure they comply with the mandatory measures to avoid potential sanctions. In addition to complying with the state’s guidance businesses should be sure to comply with all laws and regulations applicable, including, but not limited to, federal and state health and safety requirements.

In addition to the above measures, social distancing remains a pivotal defense against spreading COVID-19, thus social distancing is required in the workplace. Employers that are unable to comply with social distancing guidelines will need to implement the following measures where job functions do not allow for six feet of distance:

  • A Job Hazard Analysis (JHA) may be completed for each task, procedure, or instance that is identified where social distancing is infeasible/ impractical. Any JHA drafted for this purpose must be equivalent in detail and scope as identified in Federal OSHA publication 3071.
  • A JHA developed for this purpose must identify the task being addressed, hazard being addressed (spread of COVID-19), and controls to be used to address the hazard.
  • Any policy, practice, or protocol developed pursuant to the JHA must be as effective as or more effective than the 6 feet social distancing mandate.
  • Engineering controls, administrative controls, and PPE identified and developed through the JHA to address the hazard must be supplied by the employer.
  • Training must be provided to staff for any policy, practice, or protocol that is used to address the hazard via a JHA.
  • Training must be provided to staff for any equipment, engineered process, administrative control, or PPE that was identified and developed through the JHA to address the social distancing requirements or alternative policies, practices, or protocols implemented when social distancing is infeasible/impractical.

NV OSHA is not limiting an employers’ duty to maintain social distancing to the workplace alone. Employers are recommended to monitor employees during break, lunch/dinner, and slack periods to ensure that they are maintaining proper social distancing protocols. Employers are also advised to monitor social distancing in parking lots, staging areas, and any other location identified by the employer to be a supportive part of the overall business. Employees that do not follow social distancing are subject to the employer’s existing methods established for ensuring compliance with safety rules and work practices per NAC 618.540(1)(e).

The information contained here is general in nature. Specific guidelines may apply to your business. For more information please contact me as part of our COVID Response Task Force at swashington@murchisonlaw.com.

 

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