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New OSHA Rule Makes Injury and Illness Records Available Online

OSHA issued a final rule on May 11, 2016 which requires many employers to electronically submit information about workplace injuries and illnesses.  OSHA announced that it intends to post this information to its website for review by the public.  Under the new rule, employers with 250 or more employees will be required to submit data from the OSHA 300 logs, the 300A Summaries, and the 301 Incident Reports to OSHA electronically.  There is a proposed “phase-in” period requiring the 300A Summaries to be submitted by July 1, 2017, and all OSHA forms 300A, 300, and 301 to be submitted by July 1, 2018.  OSHA will post the employer’s specific injury and illness data collected under this final rule on its public website.  The new rule also covers smaller employers with 20 to 249 employees if classified in any of the 67 specific industries with historically high rates of injuries.  Importantly, this new rule also addresses the whistleblower provisions under 11c by highlighting retaliation protection.  Employers must specifically inform employees of the right to report work-related injuries and illnesses free from retaliation, and must ensure the procedures for reporting work-related injuries do not discourage or deter employees from doing so.  If you have questions about this new rule, or any OSHA issue, please contact a member of our Labor and Employment Group.

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