OSHA Launches ITA and Extends Electronic Reporting Deadline

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) electronic reporting rule deadline has been extended until a proposed date of December 1st, 2017. The original deadline of July 1st, 2017 has come and gone as OSHA indicated that it would not be ready to receive electronic workplace injury and illness reports in time. OSHA states they are allowing affected entities sufficient time to familiarize themselves with the electronic reporting system, and to provide the new administration an opportunity to review the electronic reporting requirements prior to their implementation. For 2019 and beyond, all affected employers will be required to submit their required information by March 2nd. OSHA also launched the Injury Tracking Application (ITA) on August 1st, 2017. The ITA is a web-based form that allows employers to electronically submit their required injury and illness data from their 2016 OSHA 300A form.

The electronic reporting rule requires certain establishments to report information from their OSHA 300, 300A, and 301 forms electronically. Any establishment that has at least 250 employees or has between 20 and 249 employees and is part of an identified high-risk industry will be affected by this rule. OSHA’s secure website, that must be used to submit your electronic reports, will offer three submission options:

1. Manual entry;

2. Transmission of information via an application programming interface (API) that should accommodate most automated recordkeeping systems; and

3. Uploading a comma-separated values file (commonly referred to as a CSV file). A CSV file is a generic spreadsheet format that should be compatible with most spreadsheet programs, such as Microsoft Excel;

The electronic reporting rule allows OSHA to publicize the electronic data it collects on a public website. Due to this, the final rule also stipulates that certain personal identifying information such as the employee name, address, physician name or other health care professional, and where the treatment was given must be omitted from the electronic submissions. The intent behind this is so the public can use the information to learn about the health and safety hazards associated with working for specific employers.

All affected establishments should continue to record and report their workplace injuries as required by applicable laws and should continue to monitor these electronic reporting developments. If you would like more information or have any questions, please feel free to contact me at any time at 601-944-9737 or ssimpson@rossandyerger.com.