Nevada’s workplace safety agency reports 49% business compliance with public face covering requirement in advance of the holiday weekend


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Teri Williams
Public Information Officer
Las Vegas, NV - July 03, 2020

Ahead of the Independence Day holiday weekend, the Division of Industrial Relations Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) conducted more than 200 initial surveys of businesses, primarily targeting bars and restaurant lounges for compliance with the public face covering mandate.

Compliance with Emergency Directive 024 and workplace safety guidance requiring social distancing, hand hygiene and proper surface disinfection and cleaning will help protect Nevada’s workforce and allow businesses to stay open.  

Of the 204 businesses observed on July 2, 49 percent complied with the face covering requirements. Fifty percent of the 180 bars and restaurant bar areas visited by officials were found to be in compliance, with the remaining establishments including automobile sales and maintenance, gyms, hair and nail establishments, and tattoo shops demonstrating a 61 percent rate of compliance.

Since enforcement of Directive 024 began, the overall business compliance rate is 85 percent in northern Nevada and 65 percent in southern Nevada. Business sectors with the highest rates of statewide noncompliance include:

  • home improvement stores- 61 percent noncompliance
  • bars- 48 percent noncompliance
  • grocery stores- 40 percent noncompliance
  • casino hotels- 33 percent noncompliance

More than 850 observations have been conducted in gaming establishments, bars, restaurants, casino hotels, gyms, hair and nail salons, automobile sales and maintenance establishments, grocery stores, home improvement stores, clothing stores and other locations where large groups of people may be congregating for longer periods of time, which can lead to a heightened risk of spreading COVID-19. 

Future observation and inspection activity may target industries and business establishments that demonstrate high rates of noncompliance or those where high volumes of complaints have been received by Nevada OSHA.

Follow up visits of establishments where violations were observed during the initial survey will be conducted within a 5-day window of the initial visit. If a violation is found during the follow up visit, a notice of citation and penalty will be issued. The maximum penalty of $134,940 can be assessed to an employer that willfully violates the provisions of the directive.

In addition, a notice will be provided to the business indicating that in the event of future noncompliance, the  Administrator may issue an Order requiring the business to cease all activity at the business location during this state of emergency under NRS 618.545(1) until the business has established and implemented operating procedures to comply with the requirements.

In addition to proactive infield observation activity, Nevada OSHA continues to respond and investigate complaints and referrals received by their offices related to Updated Nevada OSHA Guidance for Businesses Operating in Phase 2 of Nevada United: Roadmap to Recovery Plan published on June 26. This guidance contains employer requirements for encouraging proper hand hygiene, cleaning and disinfection, and social distancing. A copy of the guidance can be found on the Division of Industrial Relations website at http://dir.nv.gov/uploadedFiles/dirnvgov/content/home/features/OSHA%20Ltr%20Phase%20II%20Face%20Coverings%206-26-20A.pdf. 

Complaints can be filed with Nevada OSHA by calling (702) 486-9020 in southern Nevada and (775) 688-3700 in northern Nevada.  Complaints can also be filed online at https://www.osha.gov/pls/osha7/eComplaintForm.html.

About the Division of Industrial Relations:

The Nevada Division of Industrial Relations (DIR) is the principal regulatory agency responsible for workplace safety and worker protections in the state of Nevada.  Comprised of five sections –Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Workers’ Compensation Section, Mechanical Compliance Section, Mine Safety and Training Section, and the Safety Consultation and Training Section – DIR works to protect Nevada’s working men and women and provides a broad scope of training and support to the regulated community.  For more information please visit http://dir.nv.gov.

About Nevada OSHA:

Nevada OSHA operates as an approved state program as defined by section 18 of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 and is required by the Act to operate in a manner that is at least as effective as the federal OSHA enforcement program.  Operating out of district offices in Las Vegas and Reno, Nevada OSHA conducts inspections and investigations intended to identify hazardous conditions which could harm Nevada’s workers and enforces state and federal laws protecting the state’s workers. From July 2018 to June 2019, Nevada OSHA conducted over 1,060 inspections, issuing an average of 1.4 serious violations per inspection. The Nevada State Plan, at the time of publication of this media release, is funded by a grant of $1,486,600 federal funds, which constitutes 50 percent of the State Plan budget. Fifty percent, or $1,486,600 of the State Plan budget, is financed through non-governmental sources. For more information visit http://dir.nv.gov/OSHA/home.

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