Important Changes to OSHA’s Recordkeeping Rule

January 1, 2015 will Affect Many Employers

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has recently announced changes to both reporting and recordkeeping guidelines effective January 1, 2015.

 As of January 1, 2015, all employers must report:                                                                                               All work-related fatalities within 8 hours.                                                                                                              All work-related inpatient hospitalizations, any amputation or loss of an eye within 24 hours.                                                                                         Employers can report to OSHA by:

1.    Calling OSHA’s free and confidential number at 1-800-321-OSHA (6742)

2.    Calling their closest OSHA Area Office during normal business hours

3.    Using the new online form that will soon be available.

Only fatalities occurring within 30 days of the work-related incident must be reported to OSHA. Further, for an inpatient hospitalization, amputation or loss of an eye, these incidents must be reported to OSHA only if they occur within 24 hours of the work-related incident. Previously work-related fatalities and hospitalization of 3 or more employees required reporting.

OSHA has also updated the Recordkeeping Rule.  Employers with ten or fewer employees at all times during the previous calendar year are still exempt from routinely keeping OSHA injury and illness records unless OSHA or Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) asks them to do so.  However, the rule updates the list of industries that are exempt from the requirement to keep OSHA injury and illness records due to relatively low occupational injury and illness rates.

Some injuries and illnesses that occur in company parking lots are clearly caused by work conditions or activities -- e.g., being struck by a car while painting parking space indicators on the pavement of the lot, slipping on ice permitted to accumulate in the lot by the employer -- and by their nature point to conditions that could be corrected to improve workplace safety and health.  Interestingly enough, if an employee is injured in an accident while traveling in a motor vehicle in the employer’s parking lot it is not recordable.

Some cases may be covered by workers' compensation but are not recordable; other cases may be OSHA recordable but are not covered by workers' compensation. Cases should be evaluated solely on the basis of the OSHA requirements and definitions. Just because an employer declines to certify a claim it does not release them from responsibility of recording the claim if it meets OSHA’s recordkeeping guidelines.


What is recordable under OSHA's Recordkeeping Regulation?                                                                                                              -   Covered employers must record all work-related fatalities.                                                                                      -   Covered employers must record all work-related injuries and illnesses that result in days away from work, restricted work or transfer to another job, loss of consciousness or medical treatment beyond first aid (see OSHA's definition of first aid on their Recordkeeping page or contact RiskControl360.) In addition, employers must record significant work-related injuries or illnesses diagnoses by a physician or other licensed health care professional, even if it does not result in death, days away from work, restricted work or job transfer, medical treatment beyond first aid, or loss of consciousness. Injuries include cases such as, but not limited to, a cut, fracture, sprain, or amputation.                                                                                                                                               -    Illnesses include both acute and chronic illnesses, such as, but not limited to, a skin disease (i.e. contact dermatitis), respiratory disorder (i.e. occupational asthma, pneumoconiosis), or poisoning (i.e. lead poisoning, solvent intoxication).

OSHA's definition of work-related injuries, illnesses and fatalities are those in which an event or exposure in the work environment either caused or contributed to the condition. In addition, if an event or exposure in the work environment significantly aggravated a pre-existing injury or illness, this is also considered work-related.


The employer is to account for weekends, holidays, and other days during which the employee was unable to work because of a work-related injury or illness during a period in which the employee was not scheduled to work. The rule requires the employer to count the number of calendar days the employee was unable to work or transferred because of the work-related injury or illness, regardless of whether or not the employee would have been scheduled to work on those calendar days up to a maximum of 180 days for any injury

The employers listed below are newly required to keep records.  For a complete list of all employers required to keep records, or exempt employers contact RiskControl360 or go to OSHA’s Recordkeeping page at:


Title of NAICS Code


Bakeries and tortilla manufacturing


Automobile dealers


Automotive parts, accessories, and tire stores


Building material and supplies dealers


Specialty food stores


Beer, wine, and liquor stores


Other miscellaneous store retailers


Direct selling establishments


Lessors of real estate


Activities related to real estate


Consumer goods rental


Commercial and industrial machinery and equipment rental and leasing


Other professional, scientific, and technical services


Facilities support services


Services to buildings and dwellings


Other support services


Other ambulatory health care services


Individual and family services


Community food and housing, and emergency and other relief services


Performing arts companies


Promoters of performing arts, sports, and similar events


Museums, historical sites, and similar institutions


Other amusement and recreation industries


Special food services


Other personal services