OSHA E-News: Are You a "High-Hazard" Employer?

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The Occupational Safety and Health Administration of the U.S. Department of Labor recently announced its 2003 "site-specific targeting plan." Under the plan, OSHA will target approximately 3,200 "high-hazard" worksites for unannounced comprehensive safety and health inspections over the coming year.

OSHA has used "site-specific targeting" for the last five years. The concept is to target employers for inspection based upon injury and illness data provided by the employer. The 2003 program utilizes data submitted by employers as part of OSHA's 2002 Data Initiative.

This year's plan was effective June 16, 2003, and will initially cover about 3,200 employers that reported 14.0 or more injuries or illnesses resulting in lost work days or restricted activity for every 100 full-time workers. This number is known as the Lost Work Day Injury and Illness (LWDII) rate. The average LWDII rate in 2001 for private industry in the nation was 2.8. In 2003, employers with a LWDII equaling or exceeding 14.0 will be inspected by OSHA.

For the first time, however, OSHA has utilized a second numerical rate, called the "Days Away from Work Injury and Illness" (DAFWII) rate, to target employers for inspection. The average DAFWII rate in 2001 for private industry was 1.7. In 2003, employers that reported a DAFWII rate of 9.0 or higher will also receive first inspection priority.

Employers which reported LWDII rates of between 8.0 and 14.0, or DAFWII rates of between 4.0 and 9.0, will be placed on a secondary list for possible inspection by OSHA.

If you would like assistance in calculating the LWDII and DAFWII for your organization to evaluate your risk for inspection by OSHA, or to prepare for an OSHA inspection, please contact Jeffrey P. Clark or Daryll J. Neuser of our OSHA Practice Group.


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