Recordkeeping Mining, oil and gas

Report calls for more action from MSHA on underreporting

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Washington – The Mine Safety and Health Administration needs to take additional steps to deter the underreporting of workplace incidents, injuries and illnesses, according to a new audit report from the Department of Labor Office of Inspector General.

The report claims that some mine operators’ policies on discipline, drug testing and incentives may dissuade workers from reporting injuries.

Although MSHA currently has methods to detect and deter underreporting – including civil penalties and enforcement – and has taken steps to do so through the use of audits and other activities, OIG is recommending that the agency expand and enhance its knowledge to better target mines more likely to underreport.

OIG also recommends the development of guidance programs that would address injury reporting retaliation against miners and encourage miners to report injuries. MSHA said it would use the audit results to address problems with underreporting.