ASSESSMENT OF COMPLIANCE TO SELECTED SECTIONS OF OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH ACT 2007 AND SUBSIDIARY LEGISLATION AT KENYA TEA DEVELOPMENT AGENCY REGION FIVE FACTORIES
Keywords:Occupational, compliance, subsidiary legislation, evacuation, training
The tea industry is the largest employer in the private sector, with over 80,000 working in the estate and 3 million earning their livelihoods from the sector (KTDA annual report, 2003) The main risks posed to workers at tea factories are from unguarded machinery, chemical and biological agents as well as unfavourable working conditions like high temperatures. The study aimed at assessing compliance of tea factories to selected sections of OSHA 2007 and subsidiary legislation at Kenya Tea Development Agency factories at Region Five. The study sites were Kapkoros Tea factory, Tirgaga Tea factory, Mogogosiek Tea factory, Kapset Tea factory, Litein Tea factory, Momul Tea factory and Toror Tea factory in Bomet and Kericho counties. The study employed a descriptive design which used probability sampling methods to select 260 participants. Respondents were the factory staff in withering, boiler, billeting, cut, tear, curl (CTC) workshop, sorting, packaging and management. Structured questionnaires were used to collect qualitative data which was analyzed using statistic package for social science. The respondents 121(46.7%) had secondary school education and below, while the remaining 133(51.2%) had college education and above. Dust, injuries, poor housekeeping and Noise were the major hazards in the factories. The management admitted that there were less first aid kits in their respective factories as it was less than the recommended 5 first aid kits for a work force of 200 (Victorian OSH Act, 2004). Most of the staff in the seven tea factories reported to have been exposed to hazards such as dust, injuries and high noise levels. In terms of compliance on selected OSHA 2007 sections and other subsidiary legislation, all the seven factories were partially compliant in that they had not done noise surveys audiometric test and fire audits by the time the study was done.