On May 11, 2016, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued its final reporting rules that expand the collection of injury data from private employers in certain industries. Starting in 2017, the new rules will require employers in high-hazard industries to upload its OSHA 300A injury and illness data directly to OSHA. The agency will remove personally identifiable information from the reports, and then post the injury data on its website for public view, and also use the injury data to determine enforcement priorities and actions.
What will OSHA do with your injury data? The OSHA Administrator stated that access to the injury data will help OSHA better target its compliance assistance and enforcement resources at establishments where workers are at the greatest risk. This means those companies with high injury rates will likely see more inspections and letters of inquiry.
The final rule also emphasizes that employee’s have a right to report injuries and illnesses without fear of retaliation, and that an employer must have a reasonable procedure for reporting work-related injuries that does not discourage employees from reporting. OSHA’s rules also make critical comments about employer drug testing programs (especially post accident testing) as well as employer incentive programs that give bonuses to employees for no reported injuries. The new rules hint that OSHA may issue citations against employers with certain safety incentive programs or drug testing programs that discourage employee injury reporting.
Who must submit data to OSHA? All establishments with 250 or more employees; and also employers with 20 to 249 employees in certain industries (including construction, manufacturing, grocery, warehousing, hospitals, building materials, trucking, and agriculture. Read the final rule.
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