How OSHA chooses which companies it inspects isn’t a total mystery. One target: Companies with injury rates that are higher than their industry’s average. Now is a good time for companies to benchmark their injury rates. Reason: The Bureau of Labor Statistics has just released its annual Workplace Injuries and Illnesses report.
The report contains total OSHA-recordable and DART (injuries that involved days away from work, job transfer or restriction) rates by industry.
The overall DART rate for 2007 was 2.1 cases per 100 equivalent full-time workers.
It’s also good to know industries with the largest average DART rates. OSHA will often focus inspections on those industries with National Emphasis Programs (NEPs).
Among the industries with higher DART rates:
- Air transportation, 7.3
- Couriers and messengers, 6.8
- Warehousing and storage, 5.5
- Nursing and residential care facilities, 5.2
- Beverage and tobacco product manufacturing, 5.0
- Food manufacturing, 4.4
- Primary metal manufacturing, 4.3
- Wood product manufacturing, 4.1
- Nonmetallic mineral product manufacturing, 3.9, and
- Plastics and rubber products manufacturing, 3.7.
Company size and state-by-state
What are some other ways you can benchmark your injury record?
Medium size companies have higher total recordable injury and illness rates:
- 1-10 employees: 1.9
- 11-49 employees: 3.8
- 50-249 employees: 5.3
- 250-999 employees: 4.7
- 1,000+ employees: 4.5.
The report also contains injury rates for 43 states. Some states with high injury rates: Washington, Montana and Maine. States with low rates: Louisiana, Delaware and Virginia.
BLS says the total OSHA recordable injuries and illnesses rate declined from 4.4 cases for 100 workers in 2006 to 4.2 in 2007.
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