New OSHA Rule on Serious Workplace Injuries and Classification System Beginning January 1, 2015

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently announced a new final rule for employers reporting serious workplace injuries. Employers must now report workplace incidents requiring inpatient hospitalization of one or more workers within 24 hours. Previously, employers were required to report serious workplace injuries involving three or more workers within eight hours.

The new rule also adds a requirement to report any workplace amputation or loss of eye within 24 hours. The rule maintains the requirement of reporting fatalities within eight hours. Employers are required to report these injuries/fatalities by calling their OSHA area office. These reporting requirements are in addition to the typical recording of work-related injuries on the OSHA 300 log for employers who meet those requirements. OSHA has also indicated that it will post the injury and fatality data on its website.

Other major revisions in the final rule affect how OSHA classifies industries as “low-hazard” and thus not required to engage in recordkeeping requirements such as completing the OSHA 300 log. The agency is switching from the Standard Industrial Classification System to the North American Industry Classification System. Among the industries that must start keeping records are automobile dealers, bakeries, liquor stores, museums, and family services organizations such as child and youth services and services for elderly people and people with disabilities. Industries that will no longer be required to keep the OSHA log include gasoline stations, newspaper and book publishers, wireless telecommunications carriers, and electronics appliance stores.

These requirements all go into effect on January 1, 2015. Click here to access more information including the full test of the new final rule, and contact MSEC’s Risk Management Service at 800.884.1328 for assistance.