Don’t Forget to Post That OSHA 300A Summary By This Friday, February 1!
It always amazes me that such an admittedly dry subject creates so much interest.
Today, we held the first of two Firm webinars today on the nuts and bolts of OSHA Injury & Illness Recordkeeping, and had about 800 attendees. Same last year. I suspect that the reason that we always fill up these sessions is that the OSHA Recordkeeping Standard is complex and counter-intuitive. Moreover, the process may be dry and an everyday kind of thing… but the consequences of errors or high rates are great. You may have read my recent Blogs or articles or elsewhere pondered how a high injury rate can cost you a bid with governmental or private customers. It is imperative that in addition to building a safety process that addresses leading indicators, you also ensure that your recordkeeping is accurate. My partner, Ed Foulke and I regularly encounter more “over” recording than under-recording.
I’ll follow up on a few points that have generated quite a few questions this year. As usual, I have linked to regulations and explanatory materials.
1. If you are not exempt from the recordkeeping provisions (and you are probably not) you must post the 300A this Friday, February 1, and keep it up through April. Check partial exemptions for 10 or fewer employees or for certain industries.
2. The 300 A must be signed by the highest ranking executive at the site.
3. There are many differences between the Workers Compensation recordkeeping process and definitions. Make sure that your record keepers know the differences.
4. Temporary employees you supervise typically go on your 300.
Question 31-1. How is the term “supervised” in section 1904.31 defined for the purpose of determining whether the host employer must record the work-related injuries and illnesses of employees obtained from a temporary help service?
The host employer must record the recordable injuries and illnesses of employees not on its payroll if it supervises them on a day-to-day basis. Day-to-day supervision occurs when “in addition to specifying the output, product or result to be accomplished by the person’s work, the employer supervises the details, means, methods and processes by which the work is to be accomplished.”
5. As a related and very important additional point – you are also generally responsible to ensure that those temps have received site-specific training, any required audiometric or respiratory testing, PPE, etc. You may contract this responsibility to the provider, but the responsibility under the OSHAct remains with the supervising employer.
6. Sorry. Even if you experience no recordable incidents. You must maintain and post a log.
7. In addition to focusing on OSHA Recordkeeping and the extreme emphasis by many customers and owners on these numbers in considering bids, also recognize the potentially huge (negative) effect on your EMR (Experience Modification Rate) by the new NCCI Split Point Formula. This could be a double whammy for you; especially if you are construction.
8. I know that I sound like a broken record, at least for those of you who remember record albums, but you also need to review your Safety Incentive Programs and move away from a reliance on OSHA injury and illness rates as a means of tracking the success off your safety program, and as the subjective of your financial incentives.
9. The OSHA Recordkeeping NEP may have slunk off into the shadows, but OSHA remains vigorously committed to addressing what it believes is widespread intentional and unintentional efforts by employers to discourage employee injury reporting. Likewise, although a recent excellent decision found that OSHA could not cite for recordkeeping errors occurring more than six months before the inspection, you should still audit and correct any errors in 300 Logs as required by the standard.
10. Employers remain painfully unaware that employees, former employees, their counsel and their “designated representative” may obtain their own 301 Injury Report AND 300 logs. Need I emphasize how much mischief a plaintiff lawyer, irritated union or other third-party might do with such information? Remember the nationwide OSHA ergonomic complaints filed against one hotel chain? Those complaints started by the third-party using current and former employees as their stalking horse to obtain information. Ouch….
11. Finally, even if exempt from OSHA’s 300 Log requirements, you are still required to notify OSHA within 8 hours of any fatality or hospitalization of three or more employees. AND… some state OSHA Plans, such as Cal-OSHA, Kentucky-OSHA, Alaska, Utah, Washington and Oregon have slightly different requirements.