OSHA’s Final Rule to Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses went into effect in January. Intended to “nudge” employers into focusing more on safety, this rule requires employers to electronically submit injury and illness data.
Why submit data you’re already reporting in your on-site OSHA forms? According to the agency, “Analysis of this data will enable OSHA to use its enforcement and compliance assistance resources more efficiently.” Essentially, the agency is aiming to use aggregated incident data to pinpoint areas of noncompliance and unsafe behavior—similar to individual companies’ use of data to track and reduce accidents and illnesses.
Some data will also be posted publically, and OSHA states that, “public disclosure will encourage employers to improve workplace safety and provide valuable information to workers, job seekers, customers, researchers and the general public.” The amount of data required will depend on company size and industry, but for now, it looks like everything on an incident form is fair game.
While the rule took effect at the beginning of the year, sizeable companies should note their specific due dates. In all industries covered by the requirements, establishments with 250 or more employees will have to submit their information from 2016 Form 300A by July 1, 2017. They’ll also need to submit information from all 2017 forms (300A, 300 and 301) by July 1, 2018. Starting in 2019, the information from all forms will need to be submitted by March 2 of every year.
Requirements are slightly different for smaller, high-risk companies. Businesses with 20 to 249 employees in certain high-risk industries will also be required to submit information from their 2016 Form 300A by July 1, 2017. However, only information from 300A will be required on July 1, 2018, as well as on March 2 of every year thereafter.
Currently, there are two options for submitting data automatically — via API or CSV. BasicSafe customers will be able to use the CSV option by the July deadline, with the potential to use API in the future.
Worried about generating, organizing and keeping track of all of these forms? The BasicSafe Incident Investigation and Reporting module can help. Quickly and easily generate OSHA forms 300, 300A and 301 and keep them stored in a central repository for easy lookup. Don’t let a lack of organization cost you time and money as you comply with the new OSHA electronic submittal rule.