OSHA's Electronic Reporting Still Not Decided
By Mike Harper | 06/12/2019
The OSHA electronic recordkeeping roller coaster continues! A couple of years ago, OSHA had indicated that they were going to require employers to submit electronic versions of their 300, 300A and 301 forms into their Injury Tracking Application (ITA). Last year, they reversed course and reduced the reporting requirements to only the 300A, which had a deadline of March 2nd of this year. This makes employers lives easier and everyone is set to continue life as we know it moving forward. Well, not so fast.
There is a pending lawsuit against the reduced reporting requirements by the Public Citizen’s Health Research Group, Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists, and the American Public Health Association. This position is also supported by the AFL-CIO and other unions. The premise of the objection to rolling back this requirement is that they feel OSHA’s did not provide “a reasoned explanation for reversing its position regarding the risks and benefits” for its reversal. They contend that OSHA underwent a comprehensive evaluation that concluded the electronic submission requirement would greatly enhance worker health and safety which led to the initial decision. However, they feel OSHA’s reversal was done without a “reasoned explanation….regarding the risks and benefits” of the final rule.
OSHA has stated that although they believe the electronically reported data would be exempt from Freedom of Information Act requests, they fear that the data could be subject to release if required by a court.
For now, only the Form 300A data is required to be submitted into the Injury Tracking Application (ITA) for establishments with 250 or more employees, and 20 to 249 for certain industries that have historically high accident rates.
While the final decision works its way through the court and regulatory red tape, know that regardless of the decision, users of Simple Safety Coach will not encounter any issues or headaches. We already have an integration with the ITA system for the 300A reporting, and would simply extend that to meet any other electronic reporting requirements that may come our way!