OSHA’s Final Rule on Tracking Workplace Injuries

In May of 2016, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued a final rule “Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses” to revise its recording and reporting occupational injuries and illnesses regulation. The final rule requires employers in certain industries to electronically submit to OSHA injury and illness recordkeeping data included on the 300A, 300, and 301 forms.

In addition, the final rule includes provisions that encourage workers to report work-related injuries or illnesses to their employers and prohibit employers from retaliating against workers for making those reports.

Establishments with 250 or more employees will have to submit data contained in OSHA forms 300A, 300, and 301 with exceptions for fields with personally identifiable information. Establishments with 20-249 employees in high-risk industries will have to submit all data fields currently contained in the OSHA form 300A.

OSHA plans to make the data readily available to the public in standard open formats on osha.gov. Interested parties will be able to search and download the data. OSHA’s goals include encouraging employers to increase their efforts to prevent worker injuries and illnesses and enabling researchers (and other groups) to examine these data in innovative ways that may help employers make their workplaces safer and healthier. The data will also enable OSHA to use its enforcement and compliance assistance resources more efficiently.

The reporting requirements of the final rule will be phased in over two years. When the final rule was first published in May of 2016, the first submission deadline was set as July 1, 2017, at which time all establishments impacted by the ruling were expected to electronically submit their annual 2016 Form 300A data to OSHA. However, in June of 2017, OSHA published a notice of proposed rulemaking to extend this deadline from July 1 to December 1, 2017.

Starting in 2019, organizations will have to submit the required data to OSHA electronically on an annual basis due by March 2 for data collected in the previous calendar year.