OSHA and the New Electronic Reporting Rule

OSHA has changed the way certain companies must handle their OSHA 300A Summary for 2016 moving forward in 2017 and beyond. I have listed a summary below but there are 3 main points to the new rule regarding reporting. 
  1. Companies over 250 Employees must electronically submit their 300A Summary to OSHA by July 1st, 2017.  (Starting July 2018 you must submit 300, 300A & 301 to OSHA)
  2. Companies that have 20–249 Employees  in certain high risk industries must electronically submit their 300A Summary to OSHA by July 1st, 2017.  (Starting July 2018 you must submit 300, 300A & 301 to OSHA)
  3. If you do not meet this criteria, then you will continue to post your 300A Summary for your location February – April.

 The list of included industries are listed by their NAICS. If you are not sure and want to check your industry click on the NAICS Search link and type in your industry.
The OSHA website used for submitting this information is scheduled to be active in       February 2017. 


Why is OSHA issuing this rule?
This simple change in OSHA’s rulemaking requirements will improve safety for workers across the country. One important reason stems from our understanding of human behavior and motivation.      Behavioral economics tells us that making injury information publicly available will “nudge” employers to focus on safety. And, as we have seen in many examples, more attention to safety will save the lives and limbs of many workers, and will ultimately help the employer’s bottom line as well. Finally, this regulation will improve the accuracy of this data by ensuring that workers will not fear retaliation for reporting injuries or illnesses.


What does the rule require?

The new rule, which takes effect Jan. 1, 2017, requires certain employers to electronically submit injury and illness data that they are already required to record on their onsite OSHA Injury and Illness forms. Analysis of this data will enable OSHA to use its enforcement and compliance assistance resources more efficiently. Some of the data will also be posted to the OSHA website.

How will electronic submission work?

OSHA will provide a secure website that offers three options for data submission. First, users will be able to manually enter data into a webform. Second, users will be able to upload a CSV file to process single or multiple establishments at the same time. Last, users of automated recordkeeping systems will have the ability to transmit data electronically via an API (application programming interface). The site is scheduled to go live in February 2017.

Anti-retaliation protections

The rule also prohibits employers from discouraging workers from reporting an injury or illness. The final rule requires employers to inform employees of their right to report work-related injuries and   illnesses free from retaliation, which can be satisfied by posting the already-required OSHA workplace poster. It also clarifies the existing implicit requirement that an employer’s procedure for reporting work-related injuries and illnesses must be reasonable and not deter or discourage employees from   reporting; and incorporates the existing statutory prohibition on retaliating against employees for      reporting work-related injuries or illnesses. These provisions become effective August 10, 2016, but OSHA has delayed their enforcement until Dec. 1, 2016.

Compliance schedule

The new reporting requirements will be phased in over two years:
Establishments with 250 or more employees in industries covered by the recordkeeping regulation must submit information from their 2016 Form 300A by July 1, 2017. These same employers will be   required to submit information from all 2017 forms (300A, 300, and 301) by July 1, 2018. Beginning in 2019 and every year thereafter, the information must be submitted by March 2.
Establishments with 20-249 employees in certain high-risk industries must submit information from their 2016 Form 300A by July 1, 2017, and their 2017 Form 300A by July 1, 2018. Beginning in 2019 and every year thereafter, the information must be submitted by March 2.
OSHA State Plan states must adopt requirements that are substantially identical to the requirements in this final rule within 6 months after publication of this final rule.

If you have any questions any information found in this posting, please contact the LL Roberts Group or our new Safety Division, Roberts Risk Management (toll free) at 877.878.6463. You can even talk to us on Facebook or Twitter!  
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