Everyone bends the rules sometimes, right?
As a company, you cannot afford – in any sense of the word – to take this sort of attitude toward certain areas of compliance. Read on to find out about common compliance mistakes that you can easily avoid when filling out the OSHA form – because not doing so can put your business in jeopardy.
Mistakes to avoid:
Recording incidents incorrectly.
If you happen to record an illness as an injury, as per OSHA qualifications (OSHA makes it clear which is which) you could face heavy consequences. Remember that cumulative incidents such as sunburn or noise-induced hearing loss are considered illnesses. Incidents that occur suddenly or from a single exposure are considered injuries.
Not entering incidents of temp staff.
Even if a person is working for you as a contract temp, if an incident occurs, it must go into your OSHA injury and illness records. Improper recording of a temporary employee’s incident can cause headaches for you, as well. If you are in charge of day-to-day activities, you have a responsibility to keep a proper log of all employees.
Not recording incidents within time allotted.
If you know of an incident on the day it occurs, you have a duty to record it within seven days. If you find out a few days after it happened, your seven days starts then. But either way, you must record it on Form 300 within that time frame. Update your logs regularly and often – when you forget and do them only once a month, or even less often, you’re asking for trouble. Get it logged while the incident is still fresh in your mind.
Under-reporting “Total Hours Worked.”
In Form 300-A (Summary of Work-Related Illnesses and Injuries) you must record the total hours worked by all employees at the establishment during the corresponding year. Most employers under-report, not realizing that doing so will artificially increase your incidence rates. This usually comes from employers forgetting to count any and all hours worked by those in support roles, the boss him/herself, and supervisors and managers.
Forgetting to add a case number.
In column A of Form 300, you list all of your case numbers. You make up the numbers yourself, remaining consistent across the board as you assign to each incident. Note that this same number must go on Form 301, line 10, under “Injury & Illness Incident Report.” Not doing so will mean mistakes in your record keeping, which threatens you being in proper OSHA compliance.
A little thought before the incidents occur will allow you to not only attend to more of your employees’ needs, but also stay in compliance with OSHA regulations. For help with any OSHA-related needs, visit PrideStaff.