Overview

While the regulations that fall under the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) have remained largely unchanged over their four decades in force, their legal interpretations have, of necessity, evolved. Katten's Workplace Safety and OSHA group has contributed significantly to that evolution, having won important cases that altered the scope of the process safety management regulations, thereby changing how companies operate and cost-effectively comply with the law.

Forward-looking compliance

For businesses at high risk for safety-related workplace incidents — energy, chemicals, maritime, transportation and others — safety compliance can be remarkably complex. Our attorneys advise clients on the practical compliance issues that are most pressing. Whenever possible, our advice is forward-looking, accounting for — and accommodating — future growth. We recognize that there is no one-size-fits-all solution, and that there is latitude in safety regulations and industry consensus standards, often providing for employer discretion in how to operate efficiently and compliantly. We are thoroughly familiar with these standards, and we assist companies that incorporate new technologies in maintaining their competitive advantage.

Experience

  • Represent chemical manufacturer in fire that seriously injured two employees and resulted in investigations by OSHA and the EPA.
  • Advocate for and advise on EPA and OSHA proposed rulemaking regarding RMP and PSM regulations.
  • Advise natural gas and pipeline companies on compliance with safety regulations for gas-gathering equipment.
  • Represent national utility company in implementation of process safety management program.
  • Represent vehicle manufacturer in an OSHA inspection into machine guarding and other workplace safety standards, including subsequent enforcement.
  • Represent integrated energy companies and industry groups in multiple process safety and environmental regulatory rulemakings by federal and state agencies.
  • Defend multiple oil refineries, chemical plants, and midstream oil and gas companies in OSHA citations alleging violations of process safety management standard and other safety regulations.
  • Represent multiple refineries and industrial manufacturing plants during planned OSHA inspections, including Refinery NEP inspections.
  • Defend clients in four OSHA inspections involving crane accidents or failures and related civil litigation.
  • Represent Fortune 50 integrated energy company in investigation by BSEE and United States Coast Guard into an offshore contractor fatality.
  • Advise major electric utility on the development and implementation of process safety management systems related to a multibillion-dollar capital project.
  • Represent Fortune 50 integrated energy company with respect to a loss of well control resulting in a contractor fatality and investigations by OSHA and other enforcement agencies.