On November 13, 2014, the Federal Regulation of Occupational Health and Safety at Work herein after called (the "Regulation"), was published in the Federal Official Gazette, and in effect as of February 13, 2015. Same abrogated the old Federal Regulation of Health, Safety and Work Environment of January 27, 1997.
Society is immersing in constant changes whereby social and human relations are governed by labor activities and consequently those of Health and Safety. Change in technology; thinking manners; accessibility to media and electronic information, among others, does not permit us to stay still; therefore, society evolves, and consequently it is necessary to adapt the regulations that govern said relations with the purpose to maintain peace among individuals.
Regarding Labor, Health and Safety relations it is the work of the Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare ("STPS") to draft the mechanisms (Laws, Regulations, Standards, etcetera) through which said relations will be governed as well as to maintain same updated according to the necessities of the society as well as to inspect compliance of said laws with the purpose to guarantee the development of our country through the equilibrium of the production factors.
Derived from the above and as established in the Mexican Constitution, the Federal Labor Law ("LFT") and with the purpose to reach the objectives in the National Development Plan 2013 - 2018, this Regulation was published.
This Regulation is public of order and social interest and of general observance in all of Mexico and aims to establish provisions in matter of Health and Safety at Work to be observed in the Workplace areas1, in order to: have the conditions that can prevent hazards and, guarantee the workers the right to perform their activities in environments that ensure their life and health, based on what the LFT outlines.
Jurisdiction and Inspection
The application and inspection of this Regulation is responsibility of STPS who will be aid by the labor authorities of the Federal Entities and the Federal District, with regards to activities under state jurisdiction.
Standardization in Occupational Health and Safety
STPS will issue Standards for the purpose of establishing provisions in matters of Occupational Health and Safety that avoid:
- Risks that place in danger the life, physical integrity or the health of workers; and
- Adverse and substantial changes in the work environment, that affect or can affect the safety of workers or cause damages to the installations, machinery, equipment and materials of the Workplace.
- The STPS can issue specific Standards for Occupational Health and Safety, in the case of those areas (industrial, commercial or services) or economic activities with particular characteristics that merit a differentiated treatment or that have a major rate of Work Accidents, incapacities or deaths.
Which are the Relevant Aspects of the Regulation?
The inclusion of new Concepts such as:
Those that derive from the nonobservance or inattention to the procedures or safety measures established in this Regulation and the Standards, and that can lead to the occurrence of Occupational Incidents, Accidents and Illnesses or material damages to the Workplace.
Occupational Health and Safety Diagnosis at work.
The identification of unsafe or hazardous conditions; physical, chemical or biological agents or the ergonomic or psychosocial risk factors capable of modifying the conditions or the work environment; of the dangers surrounding the Workplace, as well as the legal requirements in matters of occupational health and safety that are applicable.
Favorable Organizational Environment.
That in which a filing of belonging to the organization among the workers; formation for the adequate performance of the tasks for which they are made responsible; the precise definition of responsibilities for the members of the organization; the proactive participation and communication among the members; the adequate distribution of work responsibilities, with regular labor shifts and the Evaluation and Review of performance is promoted.
Evaluation of Conformity.
The determination of the degree of compliance with the Standards.
Ergonomic Risk Factors.
Those that can imply physical stress, repetitive movements or forced postures in the work performed, with the consequent fatigue, errors, Occupational Accidents and Illness derived from the design of the installations, machinery, equipment, tools or job position.
Psychosocial Risk Factors.
Those that can cause anxiety disorders, non organic disorders of the sleep-wake cycle and serious stress and adaption disorders derived from the nature of the work position functions, the type of work shift and the exposure to severe traumatic events or acts of labor violence, from the work performed.
Workers with Disability.
Those that, for congenital reasons or by acquisition, present one or more deficiencies of physical, mental, intellectual or sensorial character, whether of a permanent or temporary nature.
Those acts of harassment, sexual harassment or bad treatment to the worker that can damage his/her integrity or health.
Which are the Employers Obligations?
- Have an Occupational Health and Safety Diagnostic, as well as Studies and Analysis of Risk required by this Regulation and the corresponding Standards.
- Integrate an Occupational Health and Safety program based on the Occupational Health and Safety Diagnostic.
- To prepare specific programs, manuals and procedures, that orientate the performance of labor activities and processes under safe and emergency conditions.
- To promote the incorporation of Health and Safety Commission.
- To guarantee the rendering of the Preventive Services of Occupational Health and Safety at Work.
- To include in visible places of the Workplace the warnings or signs and colors to inform, warn and prevent Risks.
- To carry out the actions of assessment, evaluation and control of contaminants of the work environment, for the purpose of conserving the Environmental Conditions of the Workplace within the exposure limit values.
- Apply the Occupational Health and Safety measures stipulated in this Regulation and in the Standards.
- To order the application of medical examinations for Occupationally Exposed Personnel required by this Regulation and the Standards;
- To provide the workers with the personal protective equipment according to the risks to which they are exposed by their work.
- To inform the workers with respect to the Risks related to the activity they are carrying out.
- To qualify and train the workers on the prevention of Risks and the attention to emergencies.
- To qualify the personnel of the Workplace that is part of the Health and Safety Commission and the Preventive Services of Occupational Health and Safety and, when applicable, to support the updating of the persons responsible for the Internal Preventive Services of Occupational Services.
- To issue the authorizations for the performance of hazardous activities or tasks that are detailed in this Regulation and specific Standards.
- To maintain the administrative records, printed or electronic, established in this Regulation and the Standards;
- Give Notice in writing or by electronic means of the labor accidents that may occur, as well as the deaths that occur for reasons of work risks within 72 hours of becoming aware of them.
- To file the notices related to the functioning containers subject to pressure, cryogenic containers and steam generators or boilers, that are included in the Regulation.
- To have the official documents, reports of results and compliance certificates in matters of Occupational Health and Safety.
- Supervise that contractors comply with the Occupational Health and Safety measures, when they carry out tasks within their installations.
- To authorize and facilitate the exercise of the duties of inspection and oversight on the part of the Labor Authority.
Which are the Employees Obligations?
- To observe the preventive measures of Occupational Health and Safety provided in this Regulation and the Standards, as well as those established by employers for the prevention of Risks.
- To inform the employer and the Health and Safety Commission immediately on Unsafe Conditions that are evident and Work Accidents that occur, and collaborate in the investigation of the same.
- To comply with submitting themselves to the medical examinations determined by this Regulation and the Standards.
- To participate in the qualification and training that, in matters of prevention of Risk and attention to emergencies are imparted by the employer or by the persons designated by the employer.
Which are the General Provisions for Occupational Safety?
General provisions of Safety that must be observed, among others, in the following matters:
- Buildings, Premises, Sites,
Installations and Work Areas.
- Review NOM-001-STPS-2008
- Prevention and Protection from
The Employer must:
- Classify the risk of fire of the Workplace integrally or by specific areas.
- Review NOM-002-STPS-2010
- Utilization of Machinery, Equipment
The Employer must:
- Prepare a study to analyze the risk to which the workers are exposed.
- Review NOM-004-STPS-1999
- Handling, Transportation and Storage
The Employer must:
- Have a specific program for the inspection and maintenance of the machinery and equipment employed as well as the procedures for the installation, operation and maintenance of same.
- Review NOM-006-STPS-2014
- Handling, transportation and storage
of hazardous chemical substances.
The Employer must:
- Prepare and analysis of risks on the hazardous chemical substances that they handle, transport or store, including procedures and have a plan of attention to emergencies for cases of leak, spills, emissions and fire.
- Inform workers on the risks they are exposed by their handling, transportation and storage.
- Review NOM-005-STPS-1998
- Driving Motorized Vehicles.
- Have a specific program for the inspection and maintenance of said vehicles.
- Have the state of health certificate from public transport and cargo drivers and urban and interurban passenger drivers.
- Apply toxicological examinations on their drivers.
- Inform the drivers on the factors of Risk and their prevention in the driving of vehicles.
- Verify that their drivers have licenses and permits issued by the appropriate authorities.
- Working at Heights;
- Have an analysis of Risks of the areas were said tasks will be carried out.
- Have instructions, manuals or procedures for the installation, operation and maintenance of the systems or equipment used.
- Issue authorizations in writing for the performance of work at heights through suspended scaffolding or elevated platforms.
- Review NOM-009-STPS-2011
- Working in Confined Spaces;
- Prepare an analysis of Risks for the activities to be performed; have safety procedures for the activities to be carried out and the equipment and tools to be used.
- Provide a rescue plan for workers possibly involved in an accident, that includes the respective equipment.
- Issue authorizations in writing for the performance of work in Confined Spaces.
- Review Project of NOM-033-STPS-2014
- Containers Subject to Pressure,
Cryogenic and Steam Generators or Boilers.
- Classify said equipment installed in the Workplace based on that detailed in the applicable Standard.
- Identify each equipment by means of a number or code.
- Review NOM-020-STPS-2011
With regard to New Equipment, the employers must give Notice that they comply with the safety conditions, together with the certificate of Evaluation of Conformity corresponding to the ten (10) years after the execution of the first one, and then every five (5) years with the sixty (60) calendar days prior to the conclusion of each period.
In the case of Used Equipment, the employers must give Notice that they comply with the safety conditions, together with the respective certificate of Evaluation of Conformity five (5) years after the first, and then each five (5) years, within the sixty (60) calendar days after the conclusion of each period.
When an alteration is made or the containers subject to pressure, cryogenic containers and steam generators or boilers are relocated, the employers must give notice to the STPS that the same maintain the safety conditions established in the Standard of the specialty, before operating said equipment, under the same terms and conditions.
- Static Electricity and Prevent
Effects of Atmospheric Discharges.
- Install grounding systems and devices or equipment for controlling the static electricity in installations or processes.
- Review NOM-022-STPS-2008
- Welding and Cutting Activities.
- Prepare an analysis of Risk of the activities to be carried out.
- Issue written authorizations for working at heights, in confined spaces, in underground basements, in the presence of flammable or explosive substances or in areas not specifically designated for those activities.
- Review NOM-027-STPS-2008
- Maintenance of Electrical
- Have an up to date single line drawing of the electrical installation and the general chart of charges installed.
- Issue written authorizations for the performance of said activities at heights, in Confined Spaces, in substations or with live parts.
- Review NOM-029-STPS-2011
Which are the General Provisions of Health in the Workplace?
General provisions of Health that must be observed, among others, in the following matters:
- Have a specific program of hearing conservation for the Occupational Exposed Personnel.
- Review NOM-011-STPS-2011
- Have a specific program for the prevention of alterations to health from exposure to vibrations.
- Review NOM-024-STPS-2001
- Establish and follow up on a specific program of maintenance to lighting and, when applicable, the emergency systems of illumination.
- Review NOM-025-STPS-2008
- Ionizing Radiations.
- Have the analysis of Risks to which workers are exposed.
- Have the analysis of the safety and radiological protection program, the safety and radiological protection manual and the plan of attention to emergencies for radiological safety.
- Review NOM-012-STPS-2012
- Non-Ionizing Electromagnetic
- Perform the Assessment of the non-ionizing electromagnetic radiation.
- Inform workers on the Risks implied for their health from the exposure of non-ionizing electromagnetic radiation.
- Review NOM-013-STPS-1993
- Elevated or Abated Thermal
- Inform the workers on the Risks to exposure to extreme temperatures.
- Perform an Assessment of the areas and of the Personnel Occupationally Exposed to extreme temperatures.
- Review NOM-015-STPS-2001
- Abnormal Environmental
- Have the analysis of Risk for the Occupationally Exposed Personnel.
- Employ only workers older than 18 years and that have the medical certificate required.
- Review NOM-014-STPS-2000
- Chemical Agents Capable of Altering
- Have a study of the chemical contaminants in the workplace environment.
- Perform the Assessment of the chemical contaminants in Work Environment.
- Inform the workers on the Risk to health from the exposure to chemical contaminants in the work environment.
- Review NOM-010-STPS-2014
- Biological Agents Capable of Alterate
- Have a study of the biological contaminants of the work environment in order to prevent alterations of the health of the workers.
- Perform the assessment of the biological contaminants or the Work Environment.
- Perform the Evaluation on the concentration of the biological contaminants of the work environment with the frequency required.
- Issue authorizations in writing for the execution of activities that imply a Risk from the handling of biological agents.
- Review NOM-047-SSA1-2011
- Ergonomic Risk Factors.
- Have an analysis of the Ergonomic Risk Factors of the work positions exposed to the same.
- Adopt preventive measures for mitigating the Ergonomic Risk Factors in their installations, machinery, equipment or tools in the Workplace.
- Perform medical examinations on the Occupationally Exposed Personnel.
- Inform the workers on the possible alterations to health from the exposure to Ergonomic Risk Factors.
- Qualify the Occupationally Exposed Personnel for safe work practices, and
- Maintain records of the preventive measures adopted and the medical examinations performed.
- Psychosocial Risk Factors.
- Identify and analyze the work positions with psychosocial risk from the nature of their functions or the type of work shift.
- Identify the workers that were subject to severe traumatic events or acts of labor violence, and evaluate them clinically;
- Adopt the pertinent preventive measures in order to mitigate the Psychosocial risk factors;
- Perform clinically examinations in the personnel occupationally exposed to psychosocial risk factors;
- Inform the workers on the possible alteration to health from the exposure to psychosocial risk factors, and
- Maintain the records on the preventive measures adopted and the results of the clinical examinations or evaluations.
Organization Provisions for Occupational Health and Safety.
Provisions that must be observed, among others, the following:
- Health and Safety Commissions
With regard to the incorporation, integration, organization and operation of the Health and Safety Commissions, employers must:
- Incorporation and integrate at least one Health and Safety Commission in the Workplace
- Attend and follow up on the measures proposed by the Health and Safety Commission for preventing Occupational Accidents and Illnesses
- The Health and Safety Commissions must be incorporation within a period not greater than ninety (90) days counted from the date of the initiation of operations in the Workplace.
- Review NOM-019-STPS-2011
- Occupational Health and Safety
- Have an Occupational Health and Safety Diagnostic
- Review NOM-030-STPS-2009
- Preventive Services of Labor
- Have the Preventive Services of Occupational Medicine that can be provided internally or externally, in the latter case through public social security institutions
- Selection and use of Personnel
- Review NOM-017-STPS-2008
- Employment of Occupational Health and
Safety Signs and the Identification of risks from fluids conducted
- Review NOM-026-STPS-2008
- Identification and Communication of
Hazards and Risks from Hazardous Chemical Substances;
- Have the safety data sheets (SDS or MSDS) in Spanish for all the Hazardous Chemical Substances that are used in the Workplace and make them available to the workers;
- Review NOM-018-STPS-2000 y 2014
- Administration of Safety in the
Critical Processes and Equipment where Hazardous Chemical
Substances are handled, and
- Have an analysis of the Risk associated to each one of the critical processes and equipment where Hazardous Chemical Substances are handled that can cause major accidents.
- Review NOM-028-STPS-2004
- Promotion of a Favorable
Organizational Environment and Prevention of Labor Violence,
establishing certain obligations on employers such as:
- Define policies for the promotion of a Favorable Organizational Environment and the prevention of the Labor Violence.
- Provide safe and confidential mechanisms for the reception of complaints from practices opposed to the Favorable Organizational Environment and the prevention of labor violence.
- Perform evaluations of the Favorable Organizational Environment, with regard to Workplaces that have more than 50 workers.
- Adopt the pertinent preventive measures for combating the practices opposed to the Favorable Organizational Environment and acts of Labor Violence.
- Disseminate among the workers the policies for the promotion of a Favorable Organizational Environment and the prevention of Labor Violence; the results of the evaluations of the Organizational Environment, as well as the measures adopted for combating the practices opposed to the Favorable Organizational Environment and acts of Labor Violence.
- Maintain the records in the preventive measures adopted and the results of the evaluations of the Favorable Organizational Environment.
Specialized Dispositions for the Occupational Health and Safety in the Workplace
- Protection of Pregnant or
The provisions have the purpose of protecting the physical integrity and the health of the women that are pregnant or nursing, and the product of conception.
- It is prohibited to assign pregnant women to the performance of the following jobs:
- Where they are exposed to noise or vibrations that exceed the limits of exposure.
- That imply the exposure to sources of ionizing radiation and infrared or ultraviolet non-ionizing radiation.
- With abnormal environmental pressures or elevated or lowered thermal conditions.
- That expose them to Contaminants in the Work Environment that can affect their health or that of the product of conception.
- Where toxic substances, carcinogens, teratogens or mutagens are handled, transported, stores or processed.
- In those that are exposed to hazardous wastes, infectious contagious biological agents or illnesses.
- That demand moderate and heavy physical force; loads greater than ten (10) kilograms; forced postures, or with repetitive movements for prolonged periods that imply abdominal stress or stress on lower members.
- Of search, rescue, and anti-accident brigades.
- At heights or Confined Spaces.
- Of welding and cutting.
- Under extreme climatic changes in an open field, that expose them to dehydration, heat stroke, hypothermia or freezing.
- In productive activities of the gas, cement, mining, iron and steel, petroleum, nuclear and electrical industries.
- On drilling rigs or maritime platforms.
- Underwater and underground, and
- All others that are established as hazardous or unhealthy in the applicable Laws, Regulations and Standards.
- The women that perform their labors or execute the tasks above referred must inform the employer that are found pregnant, immediately after having knowledge of the fact, for the purpose of relocating them temporarily in other activities that are not hazardous or unhealthy.
- Protection of Workers that
The object is to protect the physical and health integrity of the minor workers (from 15 and younger than 18 years with a maximum workday of 6 hours).
- The employers must observe the obligations corresponding to the work of minors in matters of Occupational Health and Safety according to the provisions of the LFT.
- Protection to Workers with
- In the Workplace where Workers with a Disability work, employers must:
- Perform the analysis of Risk to determine the capability of the job position to be filled by Workers with Disability.
- Consider in the Occupational Health and Safety Program the Preventive and Corrective Actions to be implemented for the prevention of Risks to Workers with Disability.
- Have adequate installations for the access and carrying out of activities of the persons with disability, in the Workplaces that have more than 50 workers.
- Adopt the use of signs for prohibition, obligation, caution and information that are accessible to their workers with Disability.
- Make the modifications and adaptations necessary in their installations, processes and job positions, for the purpose of guaranteeing their safe performance.
- Have Occupational Health and Safety conditions that permit them to perform their activities and, when applicable, their circulation and displacement to safe zone and safety, in the case of an emergency.
- Detail in the plans of attention to emergencies the alerting, evacuation and support that must be provided to the workers and the visitors that have some type of disability.
- Provide the Workers with Disability information on the Risk and the safety measures to be adopted in their work areas.
- Field Workers
The purpose is to protect the physical and health integrity of the field workers.
- For the execution of jobs related to agricultural, ranching, aquaculture, forest or mixed activities, employers must:
- Inform the workers on the Safety Instructions for the activities that they carry out, in their language or dialect, or through graphic images pictograms.
- Supply protective elements and hydrating liquids to the Personnel Occupationally Exposed to solar radiation.
- Provide provisions services of potable water and toilets in the place where their activities are carried out.
- Provide Field Workers with comfortable and hygienic housing.
- Maintain the antidotes in the workplace necessary for combating the effects of the phytosanitary o pesticide materials and materials used plant nutrition or fertilizers, and the bites of poisonous animals.
- Have the equipment and drug products necessary to attend to the worker in the case of heat stroke or severe dehydration.
- Provide safe transportation for the movement of the workers from their lodging to the field under cultivation and from the latter to the first.
- Perform entry level, periodic and special medical examinations in order to evaluate the health of the workers.
- Promotion of Health and
Prevention of Addictions in the Workplaces.
- The STPS will orientate the Workplaces on the actions and programs for the promotion of the health and the prevention of addictions that will have to be incorporated into the Occupational Health and Safety Program. For such purposes, it will issue and maintain up to date the Guide of Recommendations for the Promotion of Health and the Prevention of Addictions in the Workplaces.
- Respect the labor rights and job opportunities, independent of the state of health of their workers, provided, their life, health and physical integrity is not places at Risk, or those of the other workers.
Occupational Accidents and Illnesses
- Criteria is established to actualize the Table of occupational illnesses and Valuation of the permanent disabilities resulting from work risks, considering eleven sections of illnesses "Mental disturbances".
Notices of Occupational Accidents and Illnesses.
- Employers must Notify the STPS, in writing or electronically, on the Work Accidents that occur within the following 72 hours, according to that established in article 504-V of the LFT.
- Said Notification must be made by the workers to the public institution of social security to which he was affiliated or by his family members, if the worker is found to be incapacitated to do so, when the Employer does not do so within the term previously indicated. In addition, the worker or their family members can make the notification referred to in the preceding paragraph, to the STPS.
- The public institution of social security (IMSS) must inform the STPS electronically of the notices of Work Accidents presented by the employers or, when applicable, the workers of their family members, under the terms and conditions detailed in the corresponding legislation.
The employers will remain relieved from notifying the STPS when they present it to the public institution of social security to which by provision of the law the worker was affiliated, within the term referred.
Multimedia Courses and Modules for Self-Management Safety and Health at Work
The STPS will make multimedia courses available to interested parties that facilitate knowledge of the Standards and diminish the costs associated with their dissemination, training and application.
This Regulation establishes that the STPS will make available several programs to the employer with the purpose to facilitate the knowledge and compliance of the occupational Health and Safety Legislation in the Workplace, including i) those related to the identification of the mexican official standards; ii) to the identification and control of the personal protection equipment; and iii) the Program of Self-Management of Occupational Health and Safety.
Regarding the Program of Self-Management, it is important to establish that the employers can participate voluntarily and its scope also includes contractor companies that perform work within its facilities related to the principal activities of the employer.
STPS makes adjustments in the tabulation imposed in setting penalties and fines for violations to the provisions established in the Regulation.
Fines from 50 to 5,000 days of the general minimum daily wage in force in the Federal District. $3,505.00 pesos (approximately $250.00 dollars); $350,500.00 pesos (approximately 25,000.00 dollars).
- Review the General Regulations of Work Inspections and Application of Sanctions, published in the Federal Official Gazette on June 17, 2014.
1 Workplace, all those places, such as buildings, establishment, installations and areas where activities of exploitation, utilization, production, comercial distribution, transport and warehousing or the rendering of services, are performed in those in which individuals subject to a labor relation are working.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.