Division of Industrial Relations finds 80% of businesses in compliance with face covering mandate during July 1 surveys

Las Vegas, NV July 02, 2020

In a continued effort to protect Nevada’s workers and educate businesses on the latest requirements so that Nevada can stay safe and stay open, the Division of Industrial Relations Occupation Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has increased in-field inspection activities.

Since the Governor’s Declaration of Emergency Directive 024 went into effect on June 26, the Division of Industrial Relations has conducted 652 initial field observations. During these initial field observations, businesses that are not in compliance are provided a written notice and request for voluntary compliance. Of the 347 businesses observed on July 1, 79.8 percent were in compliance with the mandate. Businesses in northern Nevada have a cumulative compliance rate of 84.3 percent, while businesses in southern Nevada were found to have a 75 percent compliance rate.

Under the directive, employers must:

  • Provide face coverings for employees assigned to serving the public and require these employees to wear the face coverings;
  • Require employees to wear a face covering in any area where food is prepared or packaged;
  • Mandate the use of face coverings by patrons, customers, patients, and clients and will notify them of this requirement prior to entry into the establishment.

Observations have been conducted in gaming establishments, bars, 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.  

If non-compliance is found during an initial observation, the business is provided a written notice and request for voluntary compliance and a follow up visit by Nevada OSHA officials will be conducted. If the employer is still not complaint and a violation is found, 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. If the employer is observed to be in compliance during the follow up visit, the inspection will be closed with no further action necessary.

Additionally, Nevada OSHA continues to conduct ongoing compliance enforcement activity in response to 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.