Commentary: The forms are provided as a tool for the employer to document injuries, inform employees of accidents at the facility and allow OSHA inspectors to obtain a quick summary of accidents in the workplace.
Employers must use this log as a management tool to gauge the nature and frequency of injuries in order to determine corrective measures for accident elimination and counsel employees who show up on the accident log on a repeated basis. Certain highlights of the forms are as follows:
· Requires records to include any work-related injury or illness resulting in one of the following: death, days away from work, restricted work or transfer to another job, medical treatment beyond first-aid, loss of consciousness, or diagnosis of a significant injury or illness by a physician or other licensed health care professional.
· Requires a significant degree of aggravation before a preexisting injury or illness becomes recordable.
· Requires employers to record cases when injured or ill employees are restricted from their “normal duties,” which are defined as work activities employees regularly perform at least once per week.
· You may stop counting days of restricted work activity or days away from work once the total of either or the combination of both reaches 180 days.
· Focus on days away or days restricted or transferred. Rules rely on calendar days instead of workdays!
· Requires employers to establish a procedure for employees to report injuries and illnesses and to tell their employees how to report. Employers are prohibited from discriminating against employees who report. Employee representatives will have access to those parts of OSHA Form 301 relevant to the employees they represent.