Oregon Employers Required to Report Fatal Vehicle Accidents and Heart Attacks

December, 2006

Beginning January 1, 2007, Oregon employers will be required to report fatal work-related motor vehicle accidents to Oregon OSHA under recently updated safety and health rules.

Motor vehicle accidents nationally represent one-quarter of the total for workplace deaths. According to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data, motor vehicle deaths on the job rose two percent in the United States during 2005. Motor vehicle accidents have been the leading cause of fatal workplace injuries in Oregon during four of the past five years, accounting for 26 percent of fatalities compensable in the workers' compensation system between 2001 and 2005.

"We haven't done everything we can to create truly safe workplaces in Oregon until we address the largest single source of on-the-job fatalities in the state and in the nation - motor vehicles," said Michael Wood, administrator of Oregon OSHA. "And our starting point needs to be a recognition that such deaths are workplace deaths. We need to track them and to treat them with the same seriousness and careful analysis that we try to provide whenever an employee is killed on the job."

As has been the case for many years, fatal heart attacks that occur at work also must be reported to Oregon OSHA. Not all fatal heart attacks reported to Oregon OSHA result in an investigation.

Workplace deaths (including heart attacks) must be reported to Oregon OSHA at (800) 922-2689 within eight hours of the employer being aware of the incident. Workplace accidents that send three or more employees to the hospital must be reported within eight hours, while employers must report an incident that requires the overnight hospitalization of a worker within 24 hours.

Due to increased Member interest for non-commercial driver safety training, Cascade now offers an on-site "Coaching the Experienced Driver" program. Contact Cascade for details.


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