CoatingsPro Magazine

SEP 2018

CoatingsPro offers an in-depth look at coatings based on case studies, successful business operation, new products, industry news, and the safe and profitable use of coatings and equipment.

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32 SEPTEMBER 2018 COATINGSPROMAG.COM removal of eye from the socket), deglov- ing (aka skin torn away from underlying tissue), scalping (aka removal of the scalp), severed ear, or broken tooth. Additionally, the loss of a fingernail or toenail is not a reportable amputation. e best recommendation for determining whether or not an employee has suffered a reportable amputation will be to obtain a medical doctor's definition of the injury. An employer has 24 hours to report an amputation, and, during this time frame, it will be important to deter- mine how the administering physician defines the injury. If such information is unavailable or confidential, the employer must rely on the definitions provided by OSHA to determine if the injury is truly an amputation. Other Reports How should I report an overnight hospitalization, fatality, loss of an eye, or amputation? Employers have several options for reporting a hospitalization, fatal- ity, loss of an eye, or amputation. e employer may telephone the nearest area office or visit the office in person to report the incident. Next, the employer may utilize OSHA's 24-hour hotline or complete an electronic submission on OSHA's website. Regardless of which reporting method is selected, the employer must obtain written proof of timely reporting. is written documentation can be in the form of a follow-up email to the area OSHA office. If reporting is made by telephone, the employer should document the time of the call, determine the complete name of the duty officer who fielded the call, and document a confirmation number from OSHA prior to ending the phone call. W hen reporting a hospitaliza- tion or fatality to OSHA, it is very important to remember that anything the employer discloses to the duty officer will be used against the company during the investigation. It is paramount to provide only basic facts. Do not assume, speculate, or estimate how the accident happened or why the injury occurred. W hen prompted by OSHA to provide further testi- mony as to the nature of the accident, employers should inform OSHA that the company's internal investigation is ongoing and further information will be provided as such information is discovered during the company's review of the accident. is is not the time to offer any admissions as to wrongdo- ing or accept fault for any failure to properly train the injured employee. At most, the employer should provide only the name of the company, the address of the incident, the time of the incident, the time the employer learned of the incident, the known condition of the employee, and the name of the employee. In response to any and all questions from OSHA about the nature of the accident or how the incident occurred, the employer should once again inform the administration that the company investigation is ongoing and information will be provided as it becomes available. Reporting Requirements A fatality or serious injury is an emotional and tumultuous time for any company. e loss of an employee is traumatic and everlasting. While it is of primary importance to tend to the needs of the family and the employees who are left behind, once the dust settles follow- ing an accident, the employer must act quickly to abide by the legal reporting requirements handed down by OSHA. Once the accident, injury, or fatality is reported in a timely manner, the employer must then move to the next stage in crisis management and prepare to investigate and abate the incident and any associated hazards. CP Author's note: e information contained in this article is for general educational information only. is information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation. Anthony Tilton is a senior associate w it h Cot ney Const r uct ion L aw, LLP in Ta l la hassee, Flor id a. Ti lton's pract ice focuses on a l l aspects of const r uct ion law. He work s pr imar i ly on matters relat ing to OSH A defense. This inc ludes t he management and development of safet y and hea lt h st rateg ies for const r uct ion cont ractors across t he United States. Ti lton's OSH A pract ice concent rates on l it igat ion and t he appea ls of citat ions involv ing catast rophic const r uct ion related accidents. For more infor mat ion, contact: A nt hony Ti lton, (850) 213-1295, w w w.t rentcot ney.com Safety Watch

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