OSHA Announces New Rule for Reporting Severe Injuries

On September 11, 2014, OSHA announced a new final rule requiring employers to notify OSHA when an employee is killed on the job or suffers a work-related hospitalization, amputation or loss of an eye. The rule, which also updates the list of employers partially exempt from OSHA record-keeping requirements, goes into effect on January 1, 2015.

Under the rule, employers will be required to notify OSHA of work-related fatalities within eight hours, and work-related in-patient hospitalizations, amputations or losses of an eye within 24 hours. To assist employers in fulfilling these requirements, OSHA is developing a Web Portal for employers to report incidents electronically, in addition to the traditional telephone reporting option.

The new rule follows the preliminary results of the 2013 National Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries which found that 4,405 workers were killed on the job in 2013. According to Dr. David Michaels, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health, “[h]ospitalizations and amputations are sentinel events, indicating that serious hazards are likely to be present at a workplace and that an intervention is warranted to protect the other workers at the establishment.”

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