The Occupational Health and Safety Association (OSHA) changed its reporting requirements which will impact all companies covered by the Occupational Safety and Health Act, even those who are exempt from maintaining injury and illness records.

Most notably, employers must now notify OSHA of:

  • fatalities within 8 hours;
  • in-patient hospitalization of one or more workers within 24 hours; and
  • amputations or loss of an eye within 24 hours.

The rule takes effect on January 1, 2015.

How are the new rules different?

Previously, OSHA's regulations required an employer to report only work-related fatalities and in-patient hospitalizations of three or more employees. Reporting single hospitalizations, amputations or loss of an eye was not required under the old rule.

OSHA has also updated the list of industries that, due to relatively low occupational injury and illness rates, are exempt from the requirement to routinely keep injury and illness records. Significantly, the new rule maintains the exemption for any employer with 10 or fewer employees (regardless of their industry classification) from the requirement to routinely keep records of worker injuries and illnesses.

The Bottom Line

Now is a good time to (1) ensure your reporting forms are compliant; (2) train your supervisors on the new reporting requirements; and (3) check if your industry still requires routine record keeping.

For more information about the new rule, visit OSHA's website.