What And When Are Companies Required to Report or Record Injuries or Illnesses to OSHA 

What And When Are Companies Required to Report or Record Injuries or Illnesses to OSHA  Rules

Generally speaking, companies are required to report or record workplace-related illnesses and injuries. However, the reporting requirements may vary from case to case. For instance, if someone gets hospitalized within 24 hours of a work-related incident, it must be reported to OSHA within the same timeframe. Similarly, any hospitalization resulting from COVID-19 classes must be reported within 24 hours of virus exposure.

In case of non-severe injuries and illnesses, companies are responsible for keeping records of these incidents as per OSHA’s Recordkeeping requirements and rules. The companies must ensure the availability of these records to OSHA when requested. The companies also need to submit a yearly summary of these injuries and illnesses to OSHA.

Companies are required to report workplace fatalities and COVID-19-related deaths to OSHA within 8 hours, while all recordable injuries and illnesses must be documented on the Form 300 Log. It’s crucial for companies to adopt all the necessary safety measures to protect their employees and report all incidents promptly. According to guidelines issued in October 2020, if a worker dies from COVID-19 within 30 days of exposure to the virus, this death case must also be reported to OSHA.

How Can You Determine if a Case is Recordable?

In general, not every injury and illness is required to be documented on the OSHA Form 300 Log.  Report and record an illness only if it involves:

  •  Fatality
  • Medical treatment beyond first aid
  • Occupational hearing loss
  • Days off work
  • Work restrictions or job transfers
  • Loss of consciousness

Thus, if an injury requires an employee to seek medical attention beyond basic first aid or to go on restricted or modified duty, it must be recorded on the OSHA 300 Log. However, cases that only require first aid (or don’t include any element listed above) do not need to be recorded.

What Constitutes First Aid?

If you suffer an injury at the workplace, your company is responsible for offering first aid according to OSHA guidelines. First aid generally involves a single treatment and typically doesn’t require advanced technology or specialized training. The requirements for when and how companies must report, or record injuries differ based on the injury’s severity.

For minor workplace injuries, i.e. cuts or scrapes, there usually isn’t a need to report them to OSHA. However, if the injury is more serious and requires medical treatment beyond first aid, it must be recorded and reported.

As already mentioned, an illness and injury is considered recordable by OSHA only when it requires medical treatment, time off work, and/or restricted work or transfer. Additionally, according to OSHA’s broad definition, the injury or illness must be work-related.

Work-relatedness is defined under OSHA Standard Number 1904.5 as an event or exposure in the work environment that either causes or contributes to a condition or significantly worsens a pre-existing injury or illness.

Work-related injuries and illnesses can occur both on and off the job site. Companies need to understand what qualifies as work-related to report them accurately to OSHA.

For instance, if an employee’s pre-existing hernia is aggravated by his work activities, this should be recorded, even if the hernia itself did not originate at the workplace.

Some Exceptions Listed in Standard 1904.5(b)

If you suffer from an injury or illness at the workplace, there are specific things your company must report to OSHA and others they only need to record. If the injury originated from something unrelated to work, it doesn’t have to be reported. However, if it’s work-related, your company must report it.

So, when companies are required to report or record for OSHA depends on the circumstances. If an injury happens while an employee is on company premises but not working, it should be reported. Yet, if the injury occurs outside of work and has no connection to the workplace, it doesn’t need to be recorded.

As per OSHA’s section 1904.5(b), an illness or injury must not be recorded in the following conditions.

  • If the injury occurs due to the employee’s voluntary participation in a wellness program, such as a fitness exam, recreational activity, or receiving a flu shot.
  • If the illness results from the employee consuming food or drinks, they brought in or ordered.
  • If the injury happens while the employee is engaged in personal tasks during work hours at the establishment.
  • If the injury is self-inflicted intentionally.
  • If the illness is a common cold or influenza.
  • If the illness is a mental illness unless a licensed healthcare professional deems it otherwise (e.g., PTSD related to work).
  • If the injury takes place on the access road or in the parking lot while the employee is commuting to or from work.

What is Considered a “Serious” Injury or Illness?

Serious injuries and illnesses include those that lead to death, necessitate days away from work, require restricted work, or involve a transfer to a different job. When an employee is injured at work and must take time off from their usual responsibilities, or if they need to be reassigned to a different role, it is classified as a case of days away from work.

An injury is considered a days-away-from-work case if the employee is unable to carry out their regular job duties for at least one day due to the injury or illness, which could involve recovery time or medical treatment.

If an employee is injured at work and cannot perform their regular job duties but is still capable of doing some other type of work (modified duty), this is recognized as a restricted-work case.

Contact Experts at Safety Counselling Inc. for Record Submission Help

If you need assistance with your OSHA 300 form reporting, contact the experts at Safety Coinselling Inc. Our safety consultants will help ensure your business complies with OSHA 300 reporting requirements. We also provide training on OSHA hazard identification and risk assessment to keep your employees safe. To learn more about our safety training services in Albuquerque, NM, feel free to call at 505 – 881-1112.