South Bend / Mishawaka, IN – Will 2014 be any different? The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) intends to continue its focus on workplace inspections and when alleged safety violations are found, employers will be cited under the Act’s record keeping requirements. Proper record keeping has become more important to employers since OSHA issued its proposed rule to publish, in certain cases, the reported injury and illness data provided by employers.
The requirement: all employers are required to maintain the OSHA 300 log for workplace injuries and illnesses and post their 2013 annual summary by February 1, 2014, using the OSHA designated annual summary form (Form 300A).
The form can be downloaded at https://www.osha.gov. Employers are required to complete the 300 log and post the 300A summary even if they have no recordable injury or illness.
In addition to the above, the OSHA record keeping standard requires certification by a company executive. The management officials could include:
The company official must certify that he or she has reviewed the related records and reasonably believes the posted survey is accurate and complete. The annual summary must include a calculation of the annual average number of employees covered by the log and the total hours worked by all covered employees.
The annual summary posting period is three months, from February 1 to April, 30, 2014. The Form 300A must be posted in each establishment; in a conspicuous place or places where notices to employees are customarily posted.
The company executive must still certify the 300A summary, even where no reasonable injuries or illnesses are reported.
Finally, before the annual summary is prepared (and posted), the OSHA record keeping rules require (imposes an express duty) the employer to review the (Form 300A) log to verify that all entries are complete and accurate. OSHA takes this record keeping requirement seriously and so should the employer. In doing so, the employer must maintain the records for five years, plus the current year, and provide them for inspection by the OHSA investigators.
One final point, there is also a duty on the employer to ensure that the posted annual summary is not altered, defaced or obscured during the posting period. So what is next?
The content of this article is for informational purposes only and should not be considered legal advice. Your matter is factually sensitive and it is recommended that you seek the advice of counsel.
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