You may have recently read of certain criminal prosecutions arising out of workplace deaths, which are becoming more frequent in California. Section 6425 of the California Labor Code authorizes penalties for supervisors who have responsibility for the direction, management, control or custody of others where there is a willful violation of any occupational safety or health standard or order which results in the death of any employee. For a first offender, the statute authorizes a penalty of a one year jail sentence as well as a fine of up to $100,000. These same penalties also apply in certain non-fatal accidents.
Cal/OSHA maintains a list of its significant citations here. This recent enforcement activity underscores the need for employers to be vigilant regarding workplace safety issues.