This illustration, created at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), reveals ultrastructural morphology exhibited by coronaviruses. Note the spikes that adorn the outer surface of the virus, which impart the look of a corona surrounding the virion, when viewed electron microscopically. A novel coronavirus, named Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), was identified as the cause of an outbreak of respiratory illness first detected in Wuhan, China in 2019. The illness caused by this virus has been named coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). (Courtesy Alissa Eckert, MSMI / Dan Higgins, MAMS via CDC 2019)

The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health has issued citations to three Bay Area employers for not protecting workers from COVID-19.

The largest fine of $24,500 was levied against the California Prison Industry Authority for violations at its Vacaville site, following the report of a worker there who became seriously ill and another who tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. The state cited the authority for three serious violations after finding deficiencies in protection programs that exposed employees to the virus, according to Cal/OSHA.

The state agency also cited Integrated Pain Management Medical Group, a San Leandro-based medical practice, a fine of $9,450 for two serious violations after an employee was hospitalized for COVID-19 complications. The investigation found that the company failed to implement an effective employee COVID-19 screening procedure and that it had deficiencies in its respiratory protection program.

The Roseville-based framing contractor Erickson Framing CA LLC was cited two fines of $9,000 each for failure to enforce face coverings or physical distancing between employees at worksites in Vacaville and Fairfield.

Employers and workers who have questions or need assistance with workplace health and safety programs can call Cal/OSHA’s Consultation Services Branch at (800) 963-9424 or go online at

Complaints about workplace safety and health hazards can be filed confidentially with Cal/OSHA district offices or at