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New Regulation Mandates Workplaces to Report Fatal Injuries

Update Date: Sep 12, 2014 10:07 AM EDT

A new federal regulation will require workplaces to file detailed reports on all work-related, fatal injuries within eight hours. All hospitalizations must be reported within 24 hours. All cases will be sent to the Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

"We can and must do more to keep America's workers safe and healthy," Labor Secretary Thomas E. Perez said in a statement reported by Philly. "Workplace injuries and fatalities are absolutely preventable, and these new requirements will help OSHA focus its resources and hold employers accountable for preventing them."

Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health, David Michaels, added according to Businessweek, "The updated record-keeping and reporting requirements are not simply paperwork, but have an important-in fact lifesaving-purpose. They will enable employers and workers to prevent future injuries by identifying and eliminating the most serious workplace hazards: ones that have already caused injuries to occur."

Prior to this new regulation, employers were only mandated to inform the OSHA of any instances where three or more workers were seriously injured and hospitalized or when a worker had died from a workplace accident. The OSHA stated that if workplaces had to report all severe injuries include hospitalizations, amputations or the loss of an eye, they might be more inclined to take preventive measures. In 2013, 4,405 workers died while on the job.

"Serious hazards are likely to be present at a workplace and that an intervention is warranted to protect the other workers at the establishment," said Michaels. "Most employers, I think, are really shocked and affected significantly when a worker is injured. And they want to make sure that never happens again."

For more information, visit the OSHA page.

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