OSHA recently established a new rule allowing them to publish workplace-related incidents.
The rule dictates that businesses with 100 or more employees who work in OSHA-designated high-hazard industries must submit information about each recordable injury and illness to OSHA so the information can be posted to the public. This submitted information will be accessible through an online searchable database.
While the biggest change in OSHA’s regulations is that OSHA will be publishing the submitted information, there’s still more to know. To help you keep track of all these changes, we’ve compiled an FAQ list that covers the most immediate questions involving OSHA’s new regulation.
Who is Affected?
Businesses with 100 or more employees who work in OSHA-designated high-hazard industries.
What Injuries and Illnesses Qualify as Reportable?
Work-related injuries and illnesses that resulted in death, loss of consciousness, medical treatment beyond first aid (including but not limited to hospitalization, amputation, or loss of an eye), days away from work, restricted work or transfer to another job.
A fatality must be reported within 8 hours and an in-patient hospitalization, amputation or eye loss must be reported within 24 hours.
What Injuries and Illnesses Do Not Have to be Reported?
Employers do not have to report an event if it: resulted from a motor vehicle accident on a public street or highway (except in a construction work zone), occurred on a commercial or public transportation system, such as an airplane or bus, or involved hospitalization for diagnostic testing or observation only.
Do Near-Misses Count?
Near-misses do not need to be reported and are internally tracked only.
How Does This Differ From Previous Requirements?
OSHA has always required employers to record and submit work-related injuries and illnesses that resulted in death, loss of consciousness, medical treatment beyond first aid, days away from work, restricted work or transfer to another job. But now, this new rule allows OSHA to make them public records.
*Note* This doesn’t alter or eliminate the record-keeping requirements for companies who are not subject to this new rule.
What Form Do I Fill Out for the Incident Report?
You will need to fill out the OSHA Form 300 Log and Form 301 Incident Report (29 CFR 1904.41).
Where Can I Find the Incident Report?
The OSHA Form 300 Log and Form 301 Incident Report (29 CFR 1904.41) can be found on the Injury Tracking Application Portal. These forms must be submitted electronically.
What Must be Included in My Incident Report?
You will need to include the date of the incident, the physical location where it occurred and the severity of the injury or illness. You must also include information about the worker who was injured and details about how the injury or illness occurred.
How Do I Submit This Form?
The data must be electronically submitted through OSHA’s Injury Tracking Application (ITA), which can be found here. There are 3 ways to submit the data:
- Through the webform on the ITA
- By submitting a CSV file to the ITA
- Using an application programming interface feed
When Will OSHA Start Accepting This Information?
The Injury Tracking Application will begin accepting 2023 injury and illness data on Jan. 2, 2024. The due date to complete this submission is March 2, 2024.
How Often Must I Submit This Information?
The submission requirement is annual, and the deadline for timely submission of the previous
year’s injury and illness data will be on March 2 of each year. You must submit all of your qualifying incidents within the Jan. 2 to March 2 window.
What Happens if I Neglect to Submit Incidents?
If a business fails to comply with these record-keeping requirements, it will be subject to a citation. Repeated violations would result in increased penalties and assessments. OSHA has not yet revealed how it intends to issue citations for violations of this requirement, but it’s important to note that OSHA has an instance-by-instance citation policy. This means it’s possible an employer might receive a penalty for each injury they failed to report. This could result in large very penalties.
How Will These Public Records Impact My Business?
These public records may affect your business in a number of ways. If you have a particularly high rate of accidents and illnesses, it may deter individuals from wanting to work for your company. Further, if the bid granter is averse to hiring a company that has a high occurrence of incidents, it may cost you jobs.
What Will OSHA Do with This Information?
OSHA will make most of the data submitted under these new requirements available to the public. OSHA will have regulations in place to protect the identity of injured or ill workers.
What Will Be Done to Protect the Identification of Workers?
In order to prevent the identification of injured or ill workers, OSHA will:
- Not collect worker names and addresses
- Convert birth dates to age and discard birth dates
- Remind employers not to submit information that could directly identify workers, such as names, addresses, telephone numbers, etc.
- Withhold from publication the information on age, gender, date hired, and whether the worker was treated in an emergency room and/or hospitalized overnight as an in-patient
- Use automated information technology to detect and remove any remaining information that could directly identify workers
Where Can I Find More Information on These New OSHA Rules?
How Can I Protect My Company?
The best way to protect your company from having to report injuries and illnesses is to avoid them altogether. With a comprehensive safety program, you can drastically reduce the instances of injuries and illnesses within your company. SafetyHQ can help.
SafetyHQ is the construction safety app that provides safety managers with the tools they need to effectively manage their safety programs and keep their workers safe.