This quick reference guide to Vermont Occupational Safety fast money loan and Health (VOSHA) requirements for automotive repair businesses has been compiled by the Pollution Prevention Division in consultation with Fred Satink of the Vermont Occupational Helath Program. John Roorda of the Vermont Occupational Safety Program, and Lisa Young of the Vermont Automotive Dealers Association. It is based, in part, upon OSHA publication #2209, “OSHA Handbook for Small Business.”

For full and complete detail on requirements, we recommend that you consult the VOSHA Voluntary Compliance Program in developing and implementing your company’s occupational safety and health programs.

You may contact the VOSHA voluntary compliance “Work Safe” at either (802) 828-2765 (safety) or (802) 865-7730 (health).


A commitment to health and safety in the workplace is the only means of preventing accidents and injuries before they happen. Accidents and injuries not only inflict turmoil and pain into the lives of your employees, but may hinder the operations of your business. Losing a key employee to an injury, or a portion of your shop to a fire are a small businesses worst nightmares.

A commitment to safety and health in the workplace has been proven to be profitable by many businesses, small and large. An effective health and safety program means fewer worker compensation claims, a more productive and healthy workforce, and in some cases reduced prices for insurance coverage. VOSHA also allows a 25% fine reduction for facilities with “effective” health and safety programs.

VOSHA advocates a four point approach to developing a health and safety program for your business. Each point of a well organized program is equally important if effectiveness is desired. The goal of the four point approach is to develop a priority driven “action plan” your company can follow towards a safer workplace.

POINT 1: Management Commitment and Employee Involvement

A strong safety and health program begins with firm commitment of the owner and management of your company. At all times, the owner and management must express concern and demonstrate commitment for occupational safety and health. If the owner and management are not dedicated to a successful safety and health program and prevention and control of occupational hazards, it is likely that employees will not be interested either. Remember, success starts at the top.

POINT 2: Worksite Analysis

Once commitment is assured from above, it is a good idea to review the entire business in an attempt to identify and list all potential occupational exposures. Make a quick review and identify those that seem imminent threats. Spend some time looking over this guide, then review the facility again. It might even be a good idea to bring in a consultant or Vermont’s voluntary compliance program “Work Safe” at this time. Employees should be encouraged to report potentially hazardous situations without fear of reprisal. Finally, a review of “near misses” and investigation of accidents that do occur will help identify situations, machinery or operations that need to be modified or corrected.

POINT 3: Hazard Prevention and Control

At this point in the development of your “action plan”, you need to spent some time organizing occupational exposures, required paperwork, recordkeeping, signage, and training into a priority driven system. Rank your list of “to do’s” according to the imminent threat they pose employees if not immediately undertaken, the capital costs required to alleviate the threat, and your need for more information if a prevention and control measure has yet to be determined. Run this list by upper management and the owner before continuing. Be sure they understand what they are getting into, the costs of required changes, and potential impacts on employee productivity. Assure their commitment to the necessary changes and implement your “action plan”. It should be someone’s responsibility to periodically “inspect” the workplace for hazards, personal protective equipment use and adherence to company and state policies and regulations.

POINT 4: Training for Management and Employees

The most successful programs are engrossed with involvement at all levels of management and occupation. Start by getting help from other people employed in all aspects of the company’s operation. Develop a safety and health committee and orient them to safety and health issues, your priority scheme, and the major tenets of the company’s “action plan”. Work with these people to increase overall concern for occupational safety and health issues, smooth the implementation of change, further your efforts to identify hazards, and prevent and control exposures. Develop a newsletter committee, or utilize an existing newsletter for the general promotion of occupational safety and health, as well as to provide written training on exposures or required prevention and control procedures with broad bearing. Organize exposed employees on a set and frequent schedule to discuss common exposures, prevention and control measures, and emergency response procedures. Meet individually with employees exposed to isolated hazards.


Listed below are standards typically found to apply to automotive repair industries. Standards are organized in this guide under broad headings and are not necessarily a reflection of the organizational pattern setforth in the original federal code of standards. Keep in mind that certain standards (lock-out/tag-out, electrical, hazard communication, personal protective equipment, etc.) may be applicable to multiple areas and operations of your shop, and should probably be referenced under multiple headings below. However, duplication of listings has been eliminated in this guide wherever possible, and by no means is this meant to suggest that these standards do not apply.

Safety and Health Program Management and Coordination

Employer Posting

Medical Services and First Aid


Written Plans

Source: US EPA Office of Air and Radiation Stratospheric Protection Division

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Last Update – 21-Mar-97