Most U.S. employers are required to maintain the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s 300 logs. The logs are used to document workplace injuries and illnesses. Then once a year for two months (Feb. 1 through April 30) they must post OSHA form 300A, which summarizes the information in the logs.
You can download both forms, along with instructions, from OSHA’s web site.
It’s never been more important to be in compliance. That’s because OSHA has launched a major new “National Emphasis Program” (NEP) targeting employer record-keeping of workplace accidents and injuries. As part of the program, OSHA inspectors will be checking employer records and taking enforcement action “when employers are found to be under-recording injuries and illnesses.”
If OSHA inspectors show up at your front door, they’ll want to check all your and health documents, tour your premises and interview employees.
Simultaneously, OSHA seems to be gearing up for a major emphasis on workplace ergonomic injuries, which employers must also report.
All of this means now’s the time to get your OSHA form 300 in order and post form 300A ASAP.
To comply, form 300A must have two signatures: that of the staff person who maintains OSHA records, and that of a company “officer,” which can be the owner, a corporate officer or the highest-ranking employee at a particular facility. That requirement is designed to impose “senior accountability” for workplace safety, according to an OSHA statement.
Advice: Don’t just post the OSHA form and forget it. Take this opportunity to conduct your own audit of your OSHA documentation and review the past year’s safety record at your workplace. If you spot obvious problems, fix them. Your good-faith efforts to maintain a safe working environment will go a long way toward satisfying OSHA enforcement officials.
For more information on what to do if OSHA inspectors come calling, see our white paper OSHA Inspections: How to Prepare, How to Respond. It’s available at www.theHRSpecialist.com/whitepaper.
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