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Annual Report to OSHA

Subject: Annual Report on the Occupational Safety and Health Program

Effective Date: Upon release of this Instructional Guideline

Expiration date: Effective until cancelled or superseded

Supersedes: None

Background

Provisions of the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSH Act), the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), as well as Presidential Executive Order 12196 establish the duty of each Federal Executive Department and its respective agencies to submit to the Department of Labor (DOL) an annual report on the status and effectiveness of its occupational safety and health program. Specifically, these reporting duties are set forth as follows:

    • Paragraph a(5) of Section 19 of the OSH Act (Federal Agency Safety Programs and Responsibilities) requires that each Executive Department of the Federal government produce and submit an annual report to the Secretary (of Labor) with respect to its employees’ work-related accidents, injuries and illnesses, as well as the status and effectiveness of its occupational safety and health program.

    Executive Order 12196 – Occupational safety and health programs for Federal employees, section 1-201(l) requires an annual report on the department’s occupational safety and health program including information that the Secretary [of Labor] prescribes.

    • Title 29 Code of Federal Regulation (CFR) 1960.71(a) --Agency annual reports. Paragraph 71(a) of OSHA standard 1960, Basic Program Elements for Federal Employees OSHA, requires all Federal Department heads to submit to the Secretary of Labor an annual report on their Department's occupational safety and health program for the previous calendar year (CY) and objectives for the current fiscal year (FY). The report shall include a summary of the agency's self-evaluation finding as required by paragraph 1960.78(b) and also contain such additional information as the Secretary prescribes.

At the beginning of each new calendar year, usually in January, OSHA’s Office of Federal Agency Programs (OFAP) issues a formal request to Federal Departments and their respective agencies to prepare and submit their annual report on the previous year’s occupational safety and health programs. OFAP’s request specifies the parameters to be included in the Departmental and agency reports and their accompanying appendixes. The specified parameters vary from year to year but are generally similar and focus on requesting a listing of the accomplishments of the Department’s and agencies’ safety and health management system and results of completed self-evaluations of the respective safety and health programs.

Purpose

The purpose of this Department of Commerce-wide (DOC or the Department) Safety and Health Instructional Guideline is to establish the responsibilities and procedures for preparing and submitting to OSHA the Department’s annual report on the status and effectiveness of its occupational safety and health program.

Applicability

This DOC-wide Safety and Health Instructional Guideline applies to all operating units, bureaus, agencies, offices, laboratory workspaces, field operations, and other organizations or components. These operating units shall establish and maintain information on the status and effectiveness of their individual annual occupational safety and health programs and provide reports commensurate with applicable OSHA requirements and the provisions of this Instructional Guideline.

Responsibilities

Department’s Office of Occupational Safety and Health (OOSH) Responsibilities

1. Based on the parameters included in OFAP’s request (on a calendar year basis), by January 31st OOSH will request operating units to prepare and provide their individual report on their respective occupational safety and health programs. The reports are to describe the previous year’s program activities and contain the narratives and appendixes specified by the parameters and templates provided by OFAP.

2. OOSH will provide OSHA the required DOC and operating unit reports by the May 1st due date.

Operating Unit Responsibilities

The designated operating unit safety and health manager, area safety representative, or collateral duty safety representative will ensure that the operating unit’s report on its respective occupational safety and health program is completed and submitted to OOSH by March 20th of each year.

Procedures

1. The designated operating unit safety and health manager, area safety representative, or collateral duty safety representative will be given notice that the annual report on the Department’s occupational safety and health program has been requested by DOL. 29 CFR 1960.71(a)(1) requires that the Department submit to DOL by May 1st of each year a report describing the Department's occupational safety and health program of the previous calendar year and safety and health-related objectives for the current fiscal year.

2. The designated operating unit safety and health manager, area safety representative, or collateral duty safety representative must submit to OOSH each year, by the 20th of March, a report describing the operating unit’s occupational safety and health program of the previous calendar year and safety and health-related objectives for the current fiscal year. The report shall include a summary of the operating unit's self-evaluations and associated findings.

3. The operating unit will be provided with the guidelines and format for the reports at the time the request is received from OFAP, but no later than January 31st.

Examples of safety and health program elements that may be included in OSHA’s annual report request

Preparation – The following data set should be collected over the CY or FY (as appropriate) to facilitate the annual occupational safety and health program report for each operating unit:

1. Injury and Illness Trends

For each quarter, collect and record the number of total work-related lost time injury and illness cases (OSHA Form 300 Log), the respective total and lost time case rates, and total workers’ compensation chargeback cost. By the end of the FY OSHA will post the final rates on the OSHA web site.

2. Reporting of Fatalities and Severe Accidents

Notify OSHA within eight hours of a work-related incident in which there is a death or within twenty four hours when there is a work-related inpatient hospitalization of one or more employees, an amputation, or loss of an eye. According to OSHA, a severe accident is when there is a work-related fatality, an inpatient hospitalization of one or more employees, an amputation, or loss of an eye. Within seven calendar days, record each fatality, severe accident that is work-related, and or OSHA recordable injury or illness case on OSHA’s Form 300 Log.

3. Overseas Employees

Keep an accurate record of the number of civilian emplyees who work overseas for the current FY. Determine the actions that must be taken to ensure the occupational safety and health of those employees.

4. Motor Vehicle Safety

Keep accurate reports on the number of motor vehicle accidents involving your operating unit’s civilian employees. Maintain all Standard Forms (SF) - 91 “Operator’s Report of Motor Vehicle Accident” for 5 years after the incident.

Document how the operating unit is ensuring compliance with Executive Order (E.O.) 13043, “Increasing Seat Belt Use in the United States,” and E.O. 13513, “Federal Leadership On Reducing Text Messaging While Driving.” Also, document how the operating unit is decreasing all causes of distracted driving.

5. Integrating Occupational Safety and Health Principles and Concepts with Emergency Response

During the current CY, if the operating unit is involved in any emergency and/or disaster response, continuity-of-operation (COOP), etc., the operating unit must have plans to incorporate safety and health during the events. Document how the operating unit accomplished this incorporation, any lessons learned, and the challenges faced in implementing the plan.

6. Operating Unit-specific Occupational Safety and Health Resources

During the current CY, maintain a record of any changes in resources dedicated to occupational safety and health, and the impact of these changes. Document any changes in personnel, funding, etc., that have resulted in any new or revised policy affecting safety and health.

7. Occupational Safety and Health Training for Existing Employees, Contractors and New Hires.

During the course of the CY, document all training for top management officials; supervisors; safety and health specialists; safety and health inspectors; employees and employee representatives; new employees; and contractors. Indicate the frequency, duration (in terms of hours), number of individuals trained, and location of training. Also, indicate if the training was conducted in-house, or utilizing contractors. If known, record the impact of the training.

8. Field Federal Safety and Health Councils and Other Social Networking

Document the operating unit’s involvement in the Field Federal Safety and Health Councils, and any other support activities.

9. Social Networking

Document the use of social networking in promoting higher standards of workplace safety and health.

10. Ergonomics Program

Document the efforts to recognize and address ergonomic hazards (e.g., office, laboratory and industrial). Determine the various processes that the operating unit has adopted to reduce ergonomic exposures and hazards.

11. Telework (telecommuting)

Document the CY changes in policies, guidance, and processes that the operating unit has in place for teleworkers.

12. Accomplishments and Goals

Keep a record of the operating unit’s accomplishments and goals for the current FY and any changes in the goals for the next FY.

13. Additional Information

Generally, OSHA tends to include in its requests for the annual report information that was not on the previous year’s template. As soon as OOSH is aware of any such new request, the operating units will be given notice of the additional data that must be included in their respective annual reports.

Documentation

The operating unit should assign report sections, and various elements such as injury and illness trends to designated operating unit safety and health manager, area safety representative, collateral duty safety representative, or other affected staff members who are familiar with the data requested. Explain that each section must meet the Department’s expectations, the budget and the due date.

Operating units should proofread their final report. Look carefully at the report’s captions and graphic sections, where typos tend to go unnoticed. Assign a staff member unfamiliar with the report’s content to check for typos and other mistakes and one with knowledge about the operating unit to proofread for inconsistencies or misleading information.

All information from operating unit’s annual safety and health report will be retained for 5 years following the year to which the report pertains.

DOC Safety and Health Program-related Resources and References

For resources regarding DOC’s requirements for the development, implementation, and management of an effective safety and health program and associated annual report visit the following links:

OSHA Annual Report Requirements, Guidance, and References

For resources and guidance regarding OSHA’s requirements for Federal agency annual reports, visit the following links: