Hawaii OSHA laws & HR compliance analysis

Hawaii OSHA: What you need to know

The federal Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSH Act) is “preemptive;” that is, it overrides state laws and regulations in the areas that it covers. Since this amounts to virtually all areas of workplace health and safety in the private sector, the OSH Act supplants most state work safety requirements. Under the OSH Act, individual states may devise and administer their own laws and regulations, but only with federal approval and only if the applicable state requirements are as stringent as the corresponding federal standards.
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Hawaii is among the “state-plan” states that have received federal approval for their comprehensive system of occupational safety and health regulations. Hawaii's law governs workplace safety and health in the private (businesses and nonprofit organizations) and public (state and local governments, schools, commissions, etc.) sector workplaces. The law is administered and enforced by the state Department of Labor and Industrial Relations/Occupational Safety and Health Division (HIOSH). Hawaii has adopted the federal safety and health standards and has adopted its own stricter standard for noise protection (HI Rev. Stat. Sec. 396-1et seq., HI Admin. Rules Sec. 12-50et seq.). There is additional information and detailed discussion of the federal standards.
Noise. Hawaii has adopted the federal OSHA regulations for noise (HI Admin. Rules Sec. 12-200.1-2) and requires that exposure to impulsive or impact noise not exceed 140 dB peak sound pressure level (HI Admin. Rules Sec. 12-200.1-1). The federal regulation states that exposure to impulsive or impact noise “should not” exceed 140 dB peak sound pressure level.
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