The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (hereinafter the Act) was designed to encourage both employers and employees to reduce the number of occupational safety and health hazards at their places of employment. The Secretary of Labor is authorized by the Act to set mandatory standards applicable to businesses affecting interstate commerce, and the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission was created to handle the adjudication arising from enforcement of the Act. An employer's duties under the Act are to provide employees a work environment "free from recognized hazards that are causing or are likely to cause death or serious physical harm to his employees," and to conform to the specific health and safety standards promulgated by the Secretary.
Janice G. Murphy,
Employer Duties and Defenses to OSHA Violations,
U. Rich. L. Rev.
Available at: http://scholarship.richmond.edu/lawreview/vol16/iss2/11