OSHA’s Site-Specific Targeting (SST) Directive: Full Inspections Only in Cases of Elevated Injury and Illness Experience

Updated OSHA Inspection Program

With the end-goal of utilizing limited enforcement resources to target workplaces with elevated injury and illness incidents, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has announced updates to its site-specific targeting program. The Site-Specific Targeting (SST) Directive takes the place of Site-Specific Targeting 2016, and focuses on non-construction organizations with a minimum of 20 employees.

The changes to the inspection program are as follows:

  1. The creation of a new targeting category for establishments indicating consistent injury and illness rate increases over the three-year data collection period, and
  2. Permits records-only inspections to be carried out when a compliance officer discovers that an organization was included in the program due to error. In these instances, a complete inspection will only be carried out when it has been determined that the reported number of injury and illnesses have increased.

With this in mind, it is important for organizations to focus on developing a corporate culture that promotes incident reporting and engaging employees in those efforts.

In terms of best practices, experts recommend focusing on how to:

  • Find ways to avoid recordkeeping and reporting violations.
  • Meet regional regulations to ensure compliance with regional reporting regulations.
  • Use injury and illness-related data to focus and improve safety efforts.

Why Organizations Are Leveraging EHSQ Software to Improve Electronic Injury and Illness Reporting

From a tactical perspective, experts recommend that organizations review their safety-related practices and processes. On top of that, they should consider implementing EHS-specific software to help them target and reduce the number of injuries and illnesses.

In fact, there are injury and illness management applications in the market that help manage worker injuries or illnesses from cradle to grave. This includes everything from reporting the initial conditions, to investigating the root causes, to logging legal requirements to following up on CAPAs (to ensure that there is a reduced likelihood of reoccurrence).

Ideally, users should be able to:

  • Maintain an Organized Log of Recordables:
    • Gain full visibility to the injury or illness record including the location, date, and name of the employee. In addition, they will be able to view the outcome of the injury, days away and the OSHA 301 Log.
  • Centralize All Relevant Information for Easy Access:
    • Gain access to details around the injury or illness, including the initial report, classification of injury, location on body of issue, medical treatment given and SOPs or policy-related documentation and related incidents – all in one centralized location.
  • Ensure Compliance:
    • An intelligent questionnaire (embedded in the application) covers a series of questions to determine whether an injury/illness is recordable or not. Users can stay compliant through thorough and accurate recordkeeping.
  • Track the Financial Impact of Injuries and Illnesses:
    • By monitoring the costs associated with cleanup, fines, healthcare and legal expenses or even overtime expenses, users can quantify the impact of incidents and demonstrate the true value of safety.
  • Create Automated Notifications:
    • Assigning roles ensures that appropriate individuals are notified immediately.

To learn more about the best practices in electronic injury and illness management and reporting, please click here.

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