OSHA has proposed a new rule that could require many businesses to submit their injury and illness records to the agency as often as quarterly. The new rule would also allow OSHA to post these records on its website for all the world to see.
Businesses are concerned about this rule for several reasons. One is that the added collection of injury and illness records could trigger an OSHA inspection. That’s true even if a reportable event wasn’t the company’s fault – if a serious injury were caused entirely by employee misconduct, for instance, it would still have to be reported to OSHA as an injury and could trigger extra scrutiny.
Businesses are also concerned about the idea of having their injury and illness records made public. The records could then be used against the company by competitors or unions, accessed by job applicants or news reporters, or just spread around on social media by any corporate gadfly with time on his or her hands.