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Friday, May 10, 2013

OSHA's Intent Is Not To Preempt State Tort Law Claims by the HazCom Standard

My thanks to attorney, Steven H. Wodka of Little Silver, NJ, for sending this information:

"Those of you who handle toxic torts may have seen defense motions to dismiss your
clients’ failure to warn claims based on the argument that such claims are preempted by OSHA’s hazard communication standard.  Their argument is based on an unpublished NJ Appellate Division decision, Bass v. Air Products & Chemicals Inc., et al., Docket No.  A-4542-03T3, decided May 25, 2006.

"We now have a comprehensive, well-reasoned brief from the U.S. Department of Labor, filed yesterday in the DC Circuit Court of Appeals, which sets the record straight on OSHA’s “intentions” with the preemption clause in the hazard communication standard.  This brief conclusively demonstrates that our [NJ] Appellate Division erred in Bass