Nevada OSHA adopts COVID-19 emphasis program targeting high-hazard industries

Las Vegas, NV April 02, 2021

The Division of Industrial Relations has announced the adoption of an emphasis program to ensure that employees in high-hazard industries or workplaces are protected from contracting SARS-CoV-2, the cause of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). 

On January 21, 2021, President Biden issued a Presidential Executive Order on Protecting Worker Health and Safety, which directed the United States Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to launch a national program to focus OSHA enforcement efforts related to COVID-19 on violations that put the largest number of workers at serious risk, and to enforce OSHA’s anti-retaliation mandates. 

Nevada OSHA, operating as an approved state enforcement program, is implementing the provisions of the national program throughout the state of Nevada to supplement the agency’s existing COVID-19 mitigation and enforcement efforts.   

The adoption of this new program will guide the agency’s continuing COVID-19 enforcement actions within industries identified through national and state data as being at increased risk for COVID-19 exposure in the workplace. High-hazard industries identified in the emphasis program include: healthcare, construction, food and agriculture, energy, transportation and logistics, manufacturing and gaming.  

The program will permit Nevada OSHA to realign inspection resources in a manner that will protect the largest number of workers likely to be exposed to COVID-19 based on their job duties, which will in turn reduce the number of unplanned visits conducted in low-risk industries.  Nevada OSHA will also continue to respond to complaints of workplace health and safety concerns from any industry. 

The COVID-19 national emphasis program is available for review at   

About the Division of Industrial Relations:

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

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 2019 – June 2020, Nevada OSHA conducted 714 inspections, issuing an average of 1.6 violations per inspection. For more information visit

The Nevada State Plan, at the time of publication of this media release, is funded by a grant of $1,602,700 federal funds, which constitutes 50 percent of the State Plan budget. Fifty percent, or $1,602,700 of the State Plan budget, is financed through non-governmental sources.

# # #


Teri Williams
Public Information Officer