OSHA updates National Emphasis Program on amputations
Washington – OSHA has updated its National Emphasis Program on amputations to reflect the latest enforcement and injury data, the agency announced on Aug. 13.
About 2,000 workers suffered an amputation on the job in 2013, with employees in the manufacturing industry experiencing an amputation rate more than twice that of all private industry, Bureau of Labor Statistics data shows. In effect since 2006, the NEP focuses inspections on worksites in industries with high numbers and rates of amputations.
The updated NEP, which went into effect June 30, will focus on worksites in 80 industries, including bakeries, forging and several types of manufacturing sectors such as home products, concrete products, and motor vehicle body. The inspections will focus on employee exposures to machinery or equipment that could cause amputations during operations such as jam clearing, cleaning and greasing.
“Workers injured from unguarded machinery and equipment can suffer permanent disability or lose their lives,” OSHA administrator David Michaels said in a press release. “This directive will help ensure that employers identify and eliminate serious workplace hazards and provide safe workplaces for all workers.”
As part of an effort to better understand where amputations are occurring, OSHA in January issued a new rule requiring that employers report to OSHA any on-the-job amputations within 24 hours.