Governor Rick Perry wants me dead!
Well at least that might be the conclusion from reading this guy's blog on the subject of OSHA and public sector employees:
Okay, so maybe Rick Perry does, but George Bush, the guy that was governor before Perry and the second Bush to become President, cared about my health and safety.
So what do I know about OSHA-like protection for public sector employees? I am looking at this from how we do it in Texas, a state without a formal OSHA approved plan. Here is what Texas Governor George Bush said in his Executive Order:
WHEREAS, state government should lead by example by complying with all applicable federal, and state laws, standards, rules, regulations and guidelines;What that tells me, or at least how I read it, is that we don't need no stinkin' special rules for protecting state workers in Texas. We are supposed to live by the rules currently in place.
So, in Texas, me, as a state employee, is protected. My employer, the Texas A&M University System, is supposed to have a "comprehensive written risk management/safety programs" according to the Executive Order.
Do we have one for entry into a confined space?
The way I write this blog is to ask a question and then in real time look for the answer. I do this (the vast majority of the time) without knowledge of what the answer will be, and have decided that, good, bad, or indifferent, I will report what I find. I don't know if we have one, I suspect we do, but I need to check.
It is the policy of Texas A&M University (TAMU) that any individual entering into a confined space on TAMU property will do so in accordance with the procedures outlined in the Confined Space Program and 29CFR1910.146.So, without OSHA oversight, without specific state regulations for confined space entry in place, Texas has told my employer you need to protect your workers. And my employer has said, well heck, let's just comply with OSHA, because, you know, they already have confined space requirements, let's not reinvent the wheel!
I started with this question:
Question: Do public sector employees need to comply with any safety regulations regarding entry into a confined space?I can answer it now.
Answer: If by public sector employee you mean a Texas State employee, then yes, we have safety regulations regarding entry into a confined space.But what about public sector employees who are not state employees but work for a local municipality?
Public Sector Employees, Texas, and Confined Space - Part 3