OSHA announced this week that it will extend the comment period to March 8, 2014 on the proposed rule to improve workplace safety and health through improved tracking of workplace injuries and illnesses. The rule would amend recordkeeping regulations to add requirements for the electronic submission of injury and illness information that employers are already required to keep under OSHA's regulations for recording and reporting occupational injuries and illnesses.
The extension came in response to a request from the National Association of Home Builders.
OSHA is proposing to amend its current recordkeeping regulations to add requirements for the electronic submission of injury and illness information employers are already required to keep under existing standards, Part 1904. The first proposed new requirement is for establishments with more than 250 employees (and who are already required to keep records) to electronically submit the records on a quarterly basis to OSHA.
OSHA is also proposing that establishments with 20 or more employees, in certain industries with high injury and illness rates, be required to submit electronically only their summary of work-related injuries and illnesses to OSHA once a year. Currently, many such firms report this information to OSHA under OSHA's Data Initiative.
OSHA Chief Dr. David Michaels said public posting of workplace illness and injury information will nudge employers to better identify and eliminate hazards and allow his agency to target resources on those employers most in need of inspections.