Oregon OSHA Prepares COVID-19 Temporary Standard

Washington, D.C. – On September 25, Oregon’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued a near final draft of its COVID-19 Temporary Standard, which establishes COVID-19 safety precautions for all workplaces. Among other things, the standard proposes:


  • strict physical distancing requirements;
  • personal protective equipment (PPE) mandates;
  • sanitation measures;
  • required postings, employee communications, and training; and
  • protocols for a COVID-19 outbreak in the workplace, including contact tracing, notification requirements, and testing.


The draft also requires employers conduct exposure risk assessments and designate one individual per workplace as a “distancing officer.” The agency has stated that a final draft will be released for review at the end of October. The rule is expected to take effect immediately.


Simultaneously, Oregon OSHA is working on a broader and permanent Airborne Infectious Disease rule. The agency is planning to meet with rulemaking advisory committees throughout the fall to develop a pre-proposal draft of the permanent rule, and they plan to issue the draft in late November. The rule will be subject to the formal notice and comment process, which is expected to last through March 2021.