Over 5,000 Companies Made Reports to OSHA Under New Reporting Rule
July 23, 2015
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the agency has received 5,474 notices for the first six months of the year since its new injury reporting rule took effect on January 1. The rule requires employers, including metalcasting facilities, to notify OSHA within 24 hours whenever a worker is admitted to a hospital, suffers an amputation or loses an eye. Previously, OSHA had to be contacted only when three or more workers were hospitalized. OSHA’s defines amputation as including the loss of a fingertip without bone loss. The AFS EHS Conference on Aug. 11-13 in Park City, Utah, will have a session covering the reporting rule, revised Hazard Communication Standard, and as other new OSHA initiatives.
Dr. David Michaels, the Assistant Secretary of OSHA, stated last month that about 40 percent of the injury reports have prompted an OSHA inspection, while another 46 percent have resulted in OSHA contacting the employer to learn more about the incident. OSHA is utilizing a mechanism known as a “rapid response investigation (RRI),” where the agency is asking the employer to investigate the accident to determine how it happened and what corrective measures were implemented to prevent a recurrence. A RRI starts with a “non-mandatory” two-page questionnaire for the employer to complete with a request for a root cause analysis of the incident to identify failures in safety procedures. The company is requested to respond to the RRI within a week.
In addition, OSHA is in the process of creating a searchable database from the data submitted by companies from each report. The database would include: a) information about the injury, b) the circumstances surrounding it, and c) how the employer reduced associated hazards. The database would be similar to injury and fatality information offered online by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
To review OSHA’s memorandum on the new Rapid Response Investigation go to: https://www.r3law.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/OSHA-Memo-Reporting-Program-Enforcement.pdf