Employers, know how you should properly report workplace injuries and illnesses.
The recordkeeping requirements that are laid out by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires that certain covered employers prepare and maintain records of all serious occupational illnesses and injuries. All work-related illnesses or injuries that meet certain criteria must be entered into the relevant OSHA forms within seven days of its occurrence.
As of May 12, 2016, the rules on electronic recordkeeping changed. Along with electronic reporting, companies will need to provide employee training on how to report injuries and illnesses. Businesses with more than 250 employees will submit information from their 2017 forms by July 1, 2018. Also, smaller companies in high-risk industries need to submit their 2017 reports by July 1, 2018. Starting in 2019, all annual electronic reporting must be completed by March 2nd. The specific method by which the data will be electronically submitted is not specified and will presumably be provided by OSHA promptly.
To help your company keep OSHA recordkeeping rules, these strategies can help.
- Evaluate your current injury reporting procedures. Injury reporting procedures should be straightforward and not discourage employees from reporting. All employees should be given refresher training on the procedure for injury reporting.
- Review your workplace drug policy. The revised OSHA standard considers mandatory post-incident drug testing as a possible deterrent to injury reporting. Keep this in mind if your workplace drug policy includes a post-incident drug test.
- Consider workplace safety incentive programs. Focus on incentivizing workplace training completion, positive safety behavior, safety activity participation, and the like, instead of targeting workplace injury reductions as a goal.
- Ensure you know your current injury recordkeeping procedures. Prepare your electronic data reporting now – July 1, 2018 is right around the corner.