OSHA To Delay Electronic Submission For Worker Injury-Illness Logs
On June 28th, 2017, OSHA recently published a proposed rule to delay the electronic submission deadline for worker injury-illness logs submissions, extending it from an previous deadline, to December 1st, 2017. One stipulation of the proposal is that OSHA will launch a website for employers, where they will submit their logs and related data, by August 1st, 2017. This proposed launch date for the website allows for employers to have a four-month run off period, where they can compile and submit their respective Form 300A information.
OSHA issued a previous ruling in May 2016 with anti-retaliation and electronic reporting provisions taking effect on December 1, 2016. This rule experienced several delays. The topic of electronic reporting rule and anti-retaliation protocol is an important one. As the rule is, customers and companies will have access to employees’ injury and illness histories. This data allows potential employers or investors to quantify the risk in hiring, absorbing, or investing, as a part of their analyses. Furthermore, the ruling could potentially expose employees or employers to criminal penalties for false statements to the government, thereby increasing the liability of such a provision.
While OSHA’s most recent delay does not affect the recent provisions for electronic reporting and anti-retaliation, the agency did state that it intends to issue a separate provision to revise and reconsider previous provision of the previous final rule involving the injury-illness logs.
The following three requirements became effective on December 1, 2016:
- Employers must inform employees of their right to report work-related injuries and illnesses through their injury-illness logs
- All existing requirements must clarified so as to avoid impeding or discouraging employees from reporting
- All existing requirements must incorporate the existing prohibition for employers/employees retaliating against others for reporting work-related injuries or illnesses
Rulings like these are extremely important to the average employee. The provisions in this ruling could potentially affect employees and employers, alike. Taking steps to understand legislation like the aforementioned is one way that employees can protect themselves and their co-workers. Another way is to take advantage of an OSHA-approved online training course.