In this module, we'll continue on with an overview of the requirements related to retaining forms, involving employees, access to forms, and safeguards against discrimination.
You must save:
You must save these forms for five years following the end of the calendar year to which the records pertain. See forms
The five-year time period enables employers, employees, and researchers to obtain sufficient data to discover patterns and trends of illnesses and injuries and, in many cases, to demonstrate the statistical significance of such data.
Updating during storage: Employers must update their OSHA 300 Logs under two circumstances.
The intent of the rule is to ensure Log updates are made on a continuing basis, i.e., as new information is discovered during the retention period, it should be recorded within 7 calendar days of discovery, the same interval required for the recording of any new case. If new information about an existing case is discovered, it should be entered within 7 days of receiving the new information.
If your business changes ownership, you are responsible for recording and reporting work-related injuries and illnesses only for that period of the year during which you owned the establishment. You must transfer the records to the new owner. The new owner must save all records of the establishment kept by the prior owner, but need not update or correct the records of the prior owner.
The phrase "change of ownership," for the purposes of this section, is relevant only to the transfer of the responsibility to make and retain OSHA-required injury and illness records. In other words, if one employer transfers ownership of an establishment to a different employer, the new entity becomes responsible for retaining the previous employer's past OSHA-required records and for creating all new records required by this rule. The new owner is not required to update or correct the records of the prior owner, even if new information about old cases becomes available.
Your employees and their representatives must be involved in the recordkeeping system in several ways:
You can do the following to make sure employees report work-related injuries and illnesses:
When an employee, former employee, or personal representative asks for a copy of the OSHA Form 301 or equivalent describing an injury or illness to that employee or former employee, you must give the requester a copy of the OSHA Form 301 or equivalent containing that information by the end of the next business day.
When an authorized employee representative asks for copies of the OSHA Form 301 or equivalent, for an establishment where the agent represents employees under a collective bargaining agreement, you must give copies of those forms to the authorized employee representative within 7 calendar days.
You may not charge for these copies the first time. However, if one of the designated persons asks for additional copies, you may assess a reasonable charge for retrieving and copying the records.
Previously, employers had to report the following events to OSHA:
As of January 1, 2015, employers have to report the following events to OSHA:
You must give OSHA the following information for each fatality or multiple hospitalizations incident:
You do not have to report every fatality or multiple hospitalization incidents resulting from a motor vehicle accident. If the accident occurs on a public street or highway, and does not occur in a construction work zone, you do not have to report the incident to OSHA. However, these injuries must be recorded on your OSHA injury and illness records, if you are required to keep such records.
Employers must report work-related fatalities within 8 hours of finding out about it.
For any in-patient hospitalization, amputation, or eye loss, employers must report the incident within 24 hours of learning about it.
Only fatalities occurring within 30 days of the work-related incident must be reported to OSHA. Further, for an inpatient hospitalization, amputation or loss of an eye, then incidents must be reported to OSHA only if they occur within 24 hours of the work-related incident.
Employers have three options for reporting the event:
For any inpatient hospitalization, amputation, or eye loss that occurs within 24 hours of a work- related incident, employers must report the event within 24 hours of learning about it.
Employers reporting a fatality, inpatient hospitalization, amputation or loss of an eye to OSHA must report the following information:
Do I have to report the fatality, in-patient hospitalization, amputation, or loss of an eye that results in a motor vehicle accident on a public street or highway? No, you do not if the following occur:
Note: Employers do not have to report an inpatient hospitalization if it was for diagnostic testing or observation only. An inpatient hospitalization is defined as a formal admission to the inpatient service of a hospital or clinic for care or treatment.
Yes, employers do have to report an inpatient hospitalization due to a heart attack, if the heart attack resulted from a work-related incident.
What if I don't learn about a reportable fatality, in-patient hospitalization, amputation, or loss of an eye right away? Or what if I cannot determine that it was work-related right away?
You must report to OSHA within the following time period after the fatality, in-patient hospitalization, amputation, or loss of an eye is reported to you or to any of your agent(s) and you determine that it is work-related: 8 hours for a fatality, and 24 hours for an in-patient hospitalization, an amputation, or a loss of an eye.
You do not have to call OSHA to report a fatality or multiple hospitalization incident if it involves a commercial airplane, train, subway or bus accident. However, these injuries must be recorded on your OSHA injury and illness records, if you are required to keep such records.
You will need to report a fatality caused by a heart attack at work. Your local OSHA Area Office director will decide whether to investigate the incident, depending on the circumstances of the heart attack.
You must report each fatality or multiple hospitalization incident that occurs within thirty (30) days of an incident. If a fatality or hospitalization occurs long after an incident, you don't need to report it.
If you do not learn of a reportable incident at the time it occurs and the incident would otherwise be reportable under paragraphs (a) and (b) of this section, you must make the report within eight (8) hours of the time the incident is reported to you or to any of your agent(s) or employee(s).
There are two categories of employers who must routinely submit information from their injury and illness records to OSHA:
For more information on electronically submitting records to OSHA be sure to 29 CFR 1904.41, Electronic submission of injury and illness records to OSHA.
If you receive a Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses Form from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), or a BLS designee, you must promptly complete the form and return it following the instructions on the survey form.
29 CFR 1904.36 prohibits you from discriminating against an employee for reporting a work-related fatality, injury, or illness. That provision of the Act also protects the employee who files a safety and health complaint, asks for access to the part 1904 records, or otherwise exercises any rights afforded by the OSH Act
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