Effective January 1, 2015, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) will require employers to report any work-related employee fatality within eight hours and inpatient hospitalization, amputation or loss of an eye within 24 hours. Employers will be required to submit these reports to OSHA by telephone at 1-800-321-OSHA (6742), by calling or visiting the nearest area office during normal business hours or through a website that is currently under development.
This new requirement came as part of a new final rule that also updates the list of employers that are partially exempt from OSHA recordkeeping requirements. As a result, many employers that are not currently required to maintain injury and illness records will lose their exempt status and will be expected to create and maintain in their establishments OSHA Forms 300, 300A and 301. OSHA will provide compliance assistance by reaching out and making training available to affected employers.
Current OSHA Recordkeeping Requirements
Presently, OSHA requirements state that employers must report work-related fatalities and inpatient hospitalizations of three or more employees within eight hours of the event. The new rule maintains the requirement to report fatalities within eight hours, but requires reporting hospitalizations (regardless of how many employees are hospitalized), amputations and any loss of an eye within 24 hours.
In addition, OSHA currently allows certain employers to be partially exempt from its recordkeeping and reporting requirements. Qualifying employers are partially exempt because reporting requirements still apply, even though they are not required to maintain work-related injury and illness records. Employers qualify for a partial exemption if they:
- Have fewer than 10 employees (unless otherwise directed by OSHA or the Bureau of Labor Statistics)
- Their establishments are classified as being part of a partially exempt industry
Under the new final rule, the qualifications for partially exempt employers remain the same, but the list of partially exempt industries has been updated.
New OSHA Recordkeeping Requirements
The final rule will enable OSHA to conduct more accurate, timely investigations of the hazards that lead to serious injuries and illnesses in the workplace. The rule will also make OSHA’s reporting requirements more consistent with other federal and state agency requirements.
States with OSHA-approved state plans are required to notify OSHA within 60 days of whether they intend to adopt a standard or regulation that is identical or at least as effective as the new rule. State plans then have up to six months to adopt the new standard. State plans that adopt recordkeeping requirements that differ from federal requirements must identify and post on their website the differences between the federal and state requirements or submit the differences to OSHA with instructions on how the public can obtain this information.
While state plans are merely encouraged to comply with the new rule by Jan. 1, 2015, their compliance is required by Jan. 1, 2016.
To read more about the new OSHA Recordkeeping Requirements, click here. If you would like to discuss the new OSHA Requirements with an Alltrust Specialist, please click here for our contact information.