Last January, The U.S, Department of Labor's Occupational Health and Safety Administration launched an initiative that called on employers to report all severe work-related injuries within 24 hours. After the first full year of the new requirement, OSHA reports that more than 10,000 such incidents have been reported so far.
OSHA defines a "severe" work-related injury as one that results in "a hospitalization, amputation or loss of an eye." According to the Administration, last year employers reported 7,636 hospitalizations and 2,644 amputations. OSHA says it will be working with employers in many of those cases to "identify and eliminate hazards," rather than conducting full-scale workplace health and safety inspections, likely as an incentive for employers to continue to comply with reporting regulations.
"In case after case, the prompt reporting of worker injuries has created opportunities for us to work with employers we wouldn't have had contact with otherwise," said Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health David Michaels, in a release. "The result is safer workplaces for thousands of workers."
OSHA hopes the new reporting initiative will give it a more complete picture of workplace safety, allowing it to better use its resources to engage with employers in high-risk industries.
The reporting data identifies manufacturing as the most dangerous industry, accounting for 26 percent of hospitalizations and 57 percent of amputations. Construction follows in a distant second place, responsible for nearly one-fifth of all reported hospitalizations and one amputation out of every 10.
According to OSHA, more than 6 percent of severe injury reports involved a temporary worker. Although this figure is relatively small, OSHA urges both employers and staffing agencies to fully understand their roles in complying with health and safety regulations, reminding them that it is "the employer who provides the day-to-day supervision of the worker" who is responsible for reporting injuries to the Administration.
To ensure your workplace is up to date with the latest health and safety standards and OSHA regulations, contact Safety Advantage today.