Effective January 1, 2015, employers will need to report directly to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) within 24 hours all inpatient employee hospitalizations, amputations and loss of an eye resulting from a workplace incident. This expanded reporting requirement is in addition to the current requirement that employers report all workplace fatalities to OSHA within eight hours.
OSHA’s former employee injury reporting regulation required employers to report to OSHA within 8 hours all employee deaths and inpatient hospitalizations of three or more employees that occurred as a result of a workplace incident. In September 2014, OSHA issued a final rule expanding employer reporting requirements to include any employee inpatient hospitalization, amputation, or loss of an eye resulting from a workplace incident, and requiring employers to report such incidents to OSHA within 24 hours. The portion of the former rule requiring 8 hour OSHA notification of an employee fatality remains unchanged. The new rule defines “inpatient hospitalization” as “a formal admission to the inpatient service of a hospital or clinic for care or treatment.” The new rule defines “amputation” as “the traumatic loss of a limb or other external body part,” including “fingertip amputations” as well as “medical amputations due to irreparable damage.” The term amputation excludes “severed ears, or broken or chipped teeth.”
Employers can report employee fatalities, in-patient hospitalizations, amputations and loss of an eye to OSHA in one of three ways:
- At any time, by calling 1-800-321-OSHA (6742)
- During normal business hours, by calling or personally visiting the nearest OSHA area office; or
- At any time, by electronic submission form available online soon.
When reporting the incident, employers must provide the following information:
- Establishment name;
- The location of the work-related incident;
- The time of the work-related incident;
- The type of reportable event (i.e., fatality, inpatient hospitalization, amputation or loss of an eye);
- The number of employees who suffered a fatality, inpatient hospitalization, amputation or loss of an eye;
- The names of the employees who suffered a fatality, inpatient hospitalization, amputation or loss of an eye;
- The employer’s contact person and phone number; and
- A brief description of the work-related incident.
The new rule takes effect for all employers under federal OSHA’s jurisdiction on January 1, 2015. States that operate their own OSHA-approved Occupational Safety and Health Plans must adopt a regulation at least as stringent as the federal OSHA injury reporting rule within six months.