Since many serious workplace accidents happen without warning, it’s smart to be prepared for every contingency. In addition to learning CPR, you will be glad if you learn how to report an incident to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
Which Workplace Accidents must be Reported
The law requires certain incidents be reported directly to OSHA.
- Every work-related fatality
- All work-related in-patient hospitalizations
- Every work-related amputation
- All work-related losses of an eye
What Information must be Reported?
Employers who are reporting workplace accidents to OSHA must include the following information:
- Establishment name
- Location of the work-related incident
- Time of the work-related incident
- Type of reportable event, such as a fatality, in-patient hospitalization or amputation
- Number of employees involved
- Names of the affected employees
- Contact person and his or her phone number
- Short description of the work-related incident
How soon must Accidents be Reported?
According to OSHA regulations, a work-related fatality must be reported by an employer within eight hours after learning about the incident. If an in-patient hospitalization, amputation or eye loss occurs, employer must report it within 24 hours after they are aware of the situation.
However, fatalities that occur 30 days after a work-related incident do not have to be reported to OSHA. Inpatient hospitalizations, amputations or losses of an eye do not have to be reported if they occur 24 hours after a work-related incident.
Where must Serious Accidents be Reported?
There are three ways an employer can report an incident.
- Telephone to nearest OSHA area office.
- Call the 24-hour OSHA hotline (1-800-321-OSHA or 1-800-321-6742).
- Fill out this new online form.
What Incidents do not have to be Reported?
Not all incidents must be reported. Employers do not have to notify OSHA if:
- The event resulted from a motor vehicle accident on a public street or highway that is not in a construction work zone.
- An incident occurred on a commercial or public transportation system.
- The event occurred more than 30 days after the work-related incident or in the case of a fatality more than 24 hours after the work-related incident or in the case of an in-patient hospitalization, amputation, or loss of an eye.
OSHA does not require an employer to report an in-patient hospitalization if it was for diagnostic testing or observation only. Employers also do have to report an in-patient hospitalization due to a heart attack, if the heart attack resulted from a work-related incident.