OSHA / Worker Safety
OSHA / Worker Safety
What to Know about OSHA’s New Injury Reporting Rules

Earlier in September of this year, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) revised and finalized its rules for reporting industry injuries. Under the new severe-injuries-and-illness reporting requirements, employers must not only notify OSHA within eight hours after a worker is killed on the job, but also within 24 hours after an employee suffers a work-related hospitalization, amputation or loss of an eye.

Before the revision, businesses were only required to notify OSHA after a fatality occurred or when three or more employees were hospitalized from a single incident. Unlike other industries, members of the commercial construction business have never been exempt from OSHA reporting but still, there are some key items to take away from the recent revision.

  • Employers in states with state-run OSHA plans are encouraged to check with their local agencies regarding the implementation date. Federal OSHA is currently pushing for a January 1 deadline nationwide.
  • Companies with less than 10 employees remain exempt from record-keeping requirements and OSHA is in the process of developing an electronic reporting method.
  • Building material and supply dealers, building and dwelling service providers, commercial and industry machinery and equipment rental and leasing firms, and facility support service providers are now covered under the new rules.
  • Some industries are still partially exempt from the new rules such as architectural, engineering and related services, computer systems design and related services, management, scientific and technical consulting services, and schools, technical schools, colleges and universities

The continual alterations to OSHA rules, regulations and reporting have benefitted the commercial construction industry and beyond immensely. In 2013, workplace deaths in the construction industry fell by another 1 percent and the Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the industry’s 2013 fatality rate fell by .5 percent compared to 2012 to 9.4 percent.

Being fully integrated into the commercial construction industry means Leon Williams Contractors understand, abide by and appreciate OSHA standards. Without them, construction in East Tennessee and in general would not be able to grow as fast or as safely as it has been since the organization was enacted more than 40 years ago.

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