Most Employers Affected By OSHA’s Delay Of New Rule

OHSA’s proposed delay will allow time for OSHA to consider whether or not it will keep the rule at all.

By, Robert Box

In May of this year, we reported an announcement from the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) advertising the delay of a previous requirement for employers.

The announcement from OSHA removed the requirement for employers to submit injury and illness records electronically by July 1 of this year. Now, OSHA has formally proposed to delay the electronic filing deadline for employers to December 1, 2017.

The requirement to keep records of workplace injuries and illnesses already affects most employers, and the electronic filing requirement proposed to go into effect in just under five months targets the same employers. 

At present, employers with more than 10 workers are required to keep a record of serious work-related injuries and illnesses. Those employers would also be required to file records electronically if OSHA keeps the rule in place.  There are some exemptions from this rule for employers of workers in certain low-risk industries.

OSHA’s proposed delay until December 1, 2017, the new proposed deadline for employers to electronically file workplace injuries and illnesses, will allow time for OSHA and the Department of Labor to consider whether or not to keep the rule at all, and if kept, what will be included in the rule.

The Federal Register reports the delay is intended “to provide the new administration an opportunity to review the new electronic reporting requirements prior to their implementation and allow affected entities sufficient time to familiarize themselves with the electronic reporting system…”

A new online electronic filing system is purported to become available to employers on August 1 of this year for review.

OSHA also reports it intends to issue a separate proposal to “reconsider, revise, or remove other provisions of the prior final rule.” As part of this proposal, OSHA will seek comment on the delay of the July 1, 2017 compliance date to December 1, 2017.

Public comments may be submitted electronically at, or by mail or fax, as long as the comments are submitted by July 13, 2017. More details are available in The Federal Register.

Robert Box is the owner of Safety First Consulting and is a contributor of SM Corridor News. Box helps businesses identify OSHA compliance issues in their workplaces, manage their safety programs and become accountable for the results. In addition to offering custom written safety programs for companies, Safety First Consulting provides required safety training, industrial hygiene sampling, noise sampling and workplace inspections. You can read more from Robert Box under Business.

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