OSHA Updates Amputation Emphasis Program
August 26, 2015
The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently issued modifications to its National Emphasis Program (NEP) on Amputations, replacing the program in place since 2006. The agency says the updated NEP uses current enforcement and injury data to assist with site targeting.
The NEP targets industries with high numbers and rates of amputations, with manufacturers as a prime target. Metalcasting facilities will continue to be among those manufacturers inspected. Casting machinery is listed as one of the types of equipment the agency inspectors will target. According to the most recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, manufacturing employers report that 2,000 workers suffered amputations in 2013. The rate of amputations in the manufacturing sector is more than twice as much as that of all private industry.
According to OSHA, compliance officers will evaluate employee exposures during the following operations during inspections:
- Regular operation of the machine.
- Setup/threading/preparation for regular operation of the machine.
- Clearing jams or upset conditions.
- Making running adjustments while the machine is operating.
- Cleaning the machine.
- Oiling or greasing of the machine or machine pans.
- Scheduled and unscheduled maintenance.
- Locking and tagging out.
As of January 1, 2015, employers must report all amputation incidents to OSHA within 24 hours. OSHA considers amputations to include “a part, such as a limb or appendage, which has been severed, cut off, amputated (either completely or partially); fingertip amputation with or without bone loss; medical amputations resulting from irreparable damage; and amputations of body parts that have since been reattached.”