This category covers government establishments primarily engaged in regulation, licensing, and inspection of other commercial sectors, such as retail trade, professional occupations, manufacturing, mining, construction, and services. Also covered are physical standards, regulating hazardous conditions not elsewhere classified, and alcoholic beverage control.
Regulation and Inspection of Miscellaneous Commercial Sectors
The primary purpose of regulation is to prevent harm — either physical, pecuniary, or restrictive — to persons or entities. It follows that statistical data on harm, damage, or injury is necessary to amend, delete, or provide regulatory structure to an industry. Analysis and application of data provide justification for agencies and regulatory boards to exercise jurisdiction over private and public sectors in order to reduce such injuries. Examples include vehicular safety belt and speeding laws, minimum age requirements for tobacco and alcohol products, maximum weight loads in elevators, airplanes, and freight trucks, nutritional analysis on food packages, and control of pharmaceuticals by prescription only.
From the federal regulations commercial truck drivers must meet, to the deposit requirements banks must follow, government agencies — at both the state and national level — present a mosaic of requirements that promote safety and stability for the general public and for the employees in regulated industries. Regulatory responsibilities are assigned to a wide range of federal agencies. Following are some of the most active and high-profile agencies.
This agency, part of the U.S. Department of Labor, came into being in 1970. Its stated mission is "to assure so far as possible every working man and woman in the nation safe and healthful working conditions."
OSHA, working in conjunction with state agencies, utilizes 2,100 inspectors and additional complaint-discrimination investigators, engineers, physicians, educators, standards writers, and other technical and support personnel throughout the country. The agency's regulations generally do not apply to miners, transportation workers, the self-employed, and some public employees.
Through its investigations and its enforcement of regulations and standards, and through its public outreach and training efforts, OSHA works to reduce workplace injuries and deaths. An estimated 6,000 Americans die each year from injuries sustained at their places of work. An additional 50,000 people die from illnesses brought on by chemical exposures in the workplace, and an estimated 6 million people suffer nonfatal workplace injuries — injuries that carry a $110 billion price tag annually.
OSHA strictly monitors: asbestos in the workplace, bloodborne...