The Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s updated record keeping rule includes two key changes. First, the rule updates the list of industries that are exempt from the requirement to routinely keep OSHA injury and illness records due to relatively low occupational injury and illness rates. The new rule retains the exemption for any establishment with ten or fewer employees, regardless of their industry classification, from the requirement to routinely keep records.
Second, the rule expands the list of severe work-related injuries and illnesses that all covered employers must report to OSHA. The revised rule retains the current requirement to report all fatalities within 8 hours and adds the requirement to report all inpatient hospitalizations, amputations and loss of an eye within 24 hours to OSHA. Only fatalities occurring within 30 days of the work-related incident must be reported to OSHA. Further, for an inpatient hospitalization, amputation or loss of an eye, these incidents must be reported to OSHA only if they occur within 24 hours of the work-related incident.
The new requirements for establishments located in states under Federal OSHA jurisdiction took effect on January 1, 2015. Establishments located in states that operate their own safety and health programs should check with their state plan for the implementation date of the new requirement.
OSHA’s justification for expanding the reporting requirements is that incidents that were previously unreported to the agency, like amputations and hospitalizations of fewer than three employees, are sentinel events that potentially evidence serious underlying health and safety concerns at a workplace for which agency intervention is warranted. OSHA hopes its investigations that are prompted by expanded reporting will help reduce the number of employee fatalities and catastrophes.
By Chuck Hall, Director of Environmental Health and Safety
Safety is a core value of NSC and is promoted daily by management and staff throughout the organization. Our commitment to the well-being of our employees is evidenced by the dedication and passion our employees have for safety.