This is your OSHA’s Area Director.
We received a non-formal complaint recently from one of your current employees. The complaint alleges that employees there are performing welding operations on stainless steel in an area with inadequate ventilation.
This employee also states that they frequently “cough up” black sputum, and that they are worried about the health consequences caused by this lack of ventilation.
The complaint further states that no air sampling has been performed to evaluate the employees’ exposures to welding fumes. And, that when asked for respirators, they were given “dust masks” with one strap, which were purchased at the local hardware store. The effectiveness of these dust masks for the exposure that is present is also in question.
I will also be sending you an email summarizing this non-formal complaint, so that you can respond accordingly.
Draft a letter in response to the complaint. Your letter should summarize why you believe the complaint is invalid and no on-site inspection is required. Keep in mind, simply stating that the complaint is invalid is not adequate. You must support your opinions in the letter.Part 2Answer the questions below in a few sentences.
1. Where does this type of complaint fit on OSHA’s Priority criteria?
2. What factors could have made this complaint non-formal rather than formal?
3. What steps could you take as the employer to identify the employee who filed the complaint?
4. What factors could result in this complaint being reclassified as a formal complaint?