New Type of OSHA Site Inspections for Recordkeeping Violations

Hundreds of workplaces will be targeted for a new kind of inspection over the next year, according to information presented recently by OSHA personnel.  The agency is trying to identify the prevalence of “under-recording” of injuries and illnesses.   

OSHA says it will select workplaces from thousands of employers who received an OSHA Data Initiative Survey for 2007.  However, the agency explains that it will focus primarily on sites that recorded low injury and illness rates, but operate in a historically high-rate industry, i.e., animal slaughtering, steel foundries, soft drink manufacturing, couriers, nursing homes, etc. 

Under the inspection program, which is anticipated to be implemented in latter 2009, inspectors will review all available records (e.g., medical, workers’ compensation, absentee, audiograms, incident reports and other records) for several employees at sites selected.  Non-work related records will also be reviewed.   

OSHA inspectors will also conduct interviews with recordkeepers, management, employees and healthcare providers.  Where no cases are recorded on OSHA logs, interviews will be expanded.   

Finally, each visit will include a limited walk-around inspection of operation areas to look for consistency with recorded injuries and illnesses.  Non-recordkeeping violations in plain view may also be addressed.  Watch for the arrival of the Recordkeeping National Emphasis Program, expected soon.