OSHA’s National Emphasis Program (“NEP”) on Amputations has been in effect since 2006 but on August 13th the Agency issued an updated NEP (CPL 03-00-019) that significantly expands the industries targeted for inspections.  The updated NEP applies to general industry workplaces in which any machinery or equipment likely to cause amputations is present.  According to the NEP, targeted inspections will include an evaluation of employee exposures during operations such as normal operations; clearing jams; making adjustments while machinery is running; cleaning, oiling or greasing machines or machine pans; and locking out machinery to prevent accidental start-up.

Under the NEP, amputation is defined as a “traumatic loss of limb or other external body part.” Amputations include a part, such as a limb or appendage that has been severed, cut off, amputated (either completely or partially); fingertip amputation with or without bone loss; medical amputations resulting from irreparable damage; amputations of body parts that have since been reattached.  Amputations do not include avulsions, enucleations, deglovings, scalping, severed ears, or broken or chipped teeth.

The NEP on Amputations focuses on industries which have a high number and a high rate of amputations or manufacturing plants where workers have suffered amputations in the past five years.  BLS data shows that in 2013, 2000 workers in the manufacturing industry suffered amputations – a figure two times higher than the amputations reported by all of private industry.  A total of 80 manufacturing industry groups are covered under the NEP and are now targeted for inspections; 49 NAICS groups were added to the list of industries that may be inspected under the NEP.  In setting parameters for its targeting methodology and industry scope, the updated NEP incorporates the most recent data available from OSHA’s Information System (“OIS”), OSHA’s Integrated Management and Information System (“OIS”), the Bureau of Labor Statistics (“BLS”), and the 2012 NAICS codes/titles.

The updated NEP also incorporates the recent changes to OSHA’s recording and reporting injury and illness requirements which went into effect on January 1, 2015 for states under federal OSHA jurisdiction.  Under this NEP on Amputations, if an amputation is reported by an employer whose business falls within one of the NAICS codes listed in the NEP, they will be subject to an inspection under the NEP.

According to the NEP, each Regional and Area Office is required to implement a 90-day outreach program that supports the purpose of the NEP and notifies industry groups and others of the changes, but there are no specifics on exactly how this will be accomplished.

One saving grace is new establishments added based on targeting methodology and the use of NAICS codes will be offered outreach prior to inspection.

To read more or find out if your industry is covered, click here.