By Freddie Lazaro
SAN FERNANDO CITY, La Union – The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) has slapped penalties with a total amount of P2,435,000 to at least 27 companies in Region 1 for violating the Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) law in 2019.
DOLE Region 1 Director Nathaniel V. Lacambra said more companies have been penalized in 2019.
He said these companies failed to comply with the orders issued by the DOLE-1.
“Our last year’s announcement of first batch of penalized employers came with a stern warning for those planning to disregard the law,” Lacambra said.
“The DOLE-RO I have been assisting establishments to comply with OSH regulations, but at the same time, the agency is intent on enforcing the law to the fullest extent possible,” he said.
Inspection findings revealed that the erring employers committed the following infractions: lack of safety officer and trained first aider, safety signages and barricades, mandatory OSH orientation for workers, first aid kits, TESDA certificates for the operation of heavy equipment, OSH policies and reports, testing certificates for heavy equipment and fire fighting equipment; non-provision of safe drinking water and emergency medicines; poor housekeeping and non-registration of establishment.
Fatal accidents even occurred in three companies prompting the DOLE-RO I to issue work stoppage orders.
“We urge all companies to cooperate in nurturing a culture of safety and health in the workplace. Let us not forget the lessons of tragic accidents in the past,” he said.
The fines collected shall be utilized for the operation of OSH initiatives incentivizing qualified employers and workers in recognition of their efforts towards ensuring compliance with OSH and general labor standards, including OSH training and education as well as other inter-governmental programs and activities.