New OSHA Reporting Requirements
All employers that come under federal OSHA safety regulations must keep up-to-date with changes that are made by the agency. The reporting requirements for work-related fatalities and injuries changed as of January 1, 2015. This reporting requirement changes both the type of accident and the timeline allowed for making a report.
Employers must now notify the agency within 8 hours of any workplace-related fatality. Inpatient hospitalizations, the loss of an eye, or an amputation must be reported within 24 hours of learning of the situation.
The older guidelines required that notification only be made for a work-related fatality or an event where three or more employees required hospitalization from the same accident. This change is designed to help OSHA and employers provide a safer working environment.
The ability to identify, and then correct major hazards in the workplace, will make safety easier to achieve. Consider this example; your employees all use the same type of safety shoes. However, workers constantly slip if there is an oily spill on the floor. If no one ever reports this to you, you have no way to correct the problem. OSHA reporting is designed to correct safety issues.
Employers do have a couple of methods they can use to meet the reporting requirements. During regular business hours, an employer can call the closest OSHA area office and file the report. They can also call the 24-hour hotline at 1-800-321-6742 (1-800-321-OSHA).
For more information on the new reporting regulations, OSHA has several web pages that provide specific details on what reports are required and who is responsible for recordkeeping. OSHA is working towards establishing online reporting for work-related illness, injuries and fatalities to make the process easier for employers.