When it comes to reporting and keeping records of work-related injuries, illnesses, and fatalities, Employer Responsibilities under OSHA go far beyond a single line on a poster.
Report to the nearest OSHA office all work-related fatalities within eight hours, and all work-related inpatient hospitalizations, all amputations and all losses of an eye within 24 hours.
The employer is responsible for making sure that OSHA has been notified of severe injuries and fatalities quickly so that immediate action can be taken to ensure that the employee is taken care of and that there is no further risk for other employees.
Keep records of work-related injuries and illnesses. (Note: Employers with 10 or fewer employees and employers in certain low-hazard industriesare exempt from this requirement.)
Employers must keep records, using specified OSHA forms, of any type of injury or illness that goes beyond basic first aid. Types of injuries and illnesses include major incidents such as amputation, and seemingly more minor incidents like sprains and broken bones.
Provide employees, former employees, and their representatives access to the Log of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses (OSHA Form 300). On February 1, and for three months, covered employers must post the summary of the OSHA log of injuries and illnesses (OSHA Form 300A).
Provide access to employee medical records and exposure records to employees or their authorized representatives.
Both the Log of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses (OSHA Form 300) and employee medical records must be available for employees and their representatives. The log book is one way to search for hazardous trends that may be developing and to see if any safety issues that caused the injury or illness have been corrected. Transparency is key when trying to keep employees well informed of any hazards they may face in the work environment.
Actual medical and exposure records are accessed to provide a complete overview of how the injury or illness was handled. Medical records don’t have to be maintained specifically by the employer, as long as they ensure that the person or agency holding them, such as a doctor or hospital, allows employees access.
Timely reporting and correct record keeping helps employers provide employees with the rights afforded to them under OSHA.
When records are accessible, all employees have the ability to obtain a clearer understanding of the hazards they may face at work.
Download the OSHA Reporting Fact Sheet here.
HCSS Safety can help companies track safety meetings and toolbox talks, record incidents and near misses for reporting to OSHA, and record safety observations and problem areas that need improvement in the workplace.