OTHER SAFETY RULES
1011: Promulgation of Rules:
Safety and health rules may be promulgated, amended, modified, or revoked in the following manner:
(1) The Bureau, on the basis of information submitted in writing by interested parties or on the basis of information available to it, upon determination that a Rule should be promulgated or amended in order to serve the objectives of the Code, shall draft a proposed Rule. Conformably with the principle of tripartism, the Bureau may ask the advice and assistance of individuals and organizations, private or public agencies, particularly recognized workers’ and employers’ organizations, having special knowledge of the proposal under consideration.
(2) The Bureau shall prepare the proposal taking into consideration suggestions and recommendations available.
(3) The Director shall forward the proposal to the Secretary for approval. The Secretary shall within thirty
(30) days from receipt thereof act on the proposal. If rejected, same shall be returned to the Bureau with his reasons. After a reconsideration of the returned proposal, the Director shall resubmit his proposal in the manner herein outlined.
(4) After approval of the proposal by the Secretary, the same shall be published in a newspaper of general circulation and shall take effect fifteen (15) days from the date of publication and shall become part of this Standards.
1012: Special Rules:
1012.01: Work Conditions or Practices Not Covered by Standards:
Any specific rule applicable to a condition, practice, means, methods, operations or processes shall also apply to other similar work situations for which no specific rule has been established.
1012.02: Abatement of Imminent Danger:
(1) An imminent danger is a condition or practice that could reasonably be expected to cause death or serious physical harm before abatement under the enforcement procedures can be accomplished.
(2) When an enforcement officer finds that an imminent danger exists in a workplace, he shall inform the affected employer and workers of the danger and shall recommend to the Regional Director the issuance of an Order for stoppage of operation or other appropriate action for the abatement of the danger.
Pending the issuance of the Order the employer shall take appropriate measures to protect the workers.
(3) Upon receipt of such recommendation, the Regional Director shall immediately determine whether the danger exists and is of such a nature as to warrant the issuance of a Stoppage Order or other appropriate action to minimize the danger.
(4) The Order shall require specific measures that are necessary to avoid, correct or remove such imminent danger and to prohibit the presence of any worker in such location where such danger exists, except those whose presence are necessary to avoid, correct or remove such danger or to maintain a continuous process or operation. Where stoppage of operation is ordered, the Order shall allow such correction, removal or avoidance of danger only where the same can be accomplished in a safe and orderly manner.
(5) Immediately after the issuance of a Stoppage Order, the Regional Director shall furnish the Secretary, through the Director, within forty-eight (48) hours a copy of the Order and all pertinent papers relating thereto, together with a detailed description of the work conditions sought to be corrected, the safety and health rule violated by the employer, and the corrective measures imposed. The Secretary shall review the Order issued by the Regional Director and within a period of not more than five (5) working days, issue a final Order either lifting or sustaining the Order of the Regional Director.
(6) The Order shall remain in effect until danger is removed or corrected.
1012.03: Suspension of Rules:
(1) The Secretary may issue to an employer-applicant a temporary order suspending the effectivity date of a Rule or any part of this Standards for the following reasons:
a. the unavailability of professional or technical personnel or of materials and equipment needed to comply with the rule;
b. necessary construction or alteration of the prescribed facilities cannot be completed on the effectivity date of the rule;
c. the employer is participating in experiments or studies approved or conducted by the Bureau designed to demonstrate new techniques to safeguard the safety and health of workers.
(2) In such a case, the employer-applicant shall establish:
a. the reason why he is applying for a suspension order, specifying the rule or portion he seeks suspension of;
b. that he is taking all available and necessary steps to safeguard his workers against the hazards covered by the rule, and that he is prescribing necessary measures, methods, operations and practices which he must adopt and use while the suspension is in effect;
c. that he has an effective program for coming into compliance with the rule as quickly as possible, specifying a given date for compliance;
d. that he has informed his workers of the application and a copy of the application and reasons thereof have been given to the workers or their duly authorized representative.
(3) The application shall be submitted to the Regional Director or duly authorized representative, as the case may be, who after hearing the workers or their duly authorized representative shall evaluate and recommend action to the Secretary, through the Director. He may issue an interim order to be effective until the suspension order is issued by the Secretary.
(4) The suspension order, including the interim order, shall prescribe the practices, means, methods, operations, or processes which the employer must use and adopt while the order is in effect and while the program for coming into compliance with the rule is being implemented.
(5) The suspension order shall not be in effect longer than the period needed by the employer to come into compliance with the rule, or one year, whichever is shorter, renewable for another year, subject to revocation or shortening of the period by the Secretary, if such is warranted.
1012.04: Variation Order:
(1) If there shall be practical difficulty or unnecessary hardship in complying with the requirements of any rule or provision of this Standards, the Secretary, upon the recommendation of the Director, may issue an order allowing a variation in complying with such requirements, provided that the purpose of such rule or provision is substantially served and the safety and health of the workers remain ensured. The employer affected by such rule or provision may request in writing the Secretary, thru the Regional Labor Office, to authorize such a variation stating the grounds for the request and the measures to be taken or already being taken.
(2) An application for a variation shall contain:
a. a specification of the rule or provision or portion thereof from which the employer is seeking a variation.
b . an attestation from technically qualified person that the employer is unable to comply with the rule and detailed reasons thereof;
c. a detailed statement of the measure he will take or is already taking to protect the workers against the hazards covered by the rule or provision; and
d. a certification that the workers have been informed and a copy of the application has been furnished the workers or their duly authorized representative.
(3) A variation order shall stipulate the conditions under which the variation is permitted and shall be applicable and effective only to the particular employer and operations covered by the Order. A variation order shall remain in effect until revoked by the Secretary.
1013: Hazardous Workplaces:
For purposes of this Standards, the following are considered “hazardous workplaces:”
a. Where the nature of work exposes the workers to dangerous environmental elements, contaminants or work conditions including ionizing radiation, chemicals, fire, flammable substances, noxious components and the like;
b. Where the workers are engaged in construction work, logging, fire fighting, mining, quarrying, blasting, stevedoring, dock work, deep-sea fishing and mechanized farming;
c. Where the workers are engaged in the manufacture or handling of explosives and other pyrotechnic products;
d. Where the workers use or are exposed to power driven or explosive powder actuated tools;
e. Where the workers are exposed to biologic agents such as bacteria, fungi, viruses, protozoas, nematodes, and other parasites.