OSHA Issues Letter of Interpretation Regarding Amputation

A new Letter of Interpretation (LOI) dated 12/16/14 has been issued by OSHA. This LOI is timely because it clarifies the two new "reportable injuries":  amputation and loss of an eye.  An amputation, for OSHA reporting purposes, is defined under section 1904.39(b)(11); however, "loss of an eye" had a lot of us wondering what that means.  OSHA says "Loss of an eye" is the physical removal of the eye, including enucleation and evisceration. Loss of sight without the removal of the eye is NOT (emphasis added) reportable under the requirements of section 1904.39. A case involving loss of sight that results in the in-patient hospitalization of the worker within 24 hours of the work-related incident is reportable. Amputation is defined as the traumatic loss of a 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 amputations 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, scalpings, severed ears, or broken or chipped teeth.  REMEMBER:  Reportable amputations do NOT need to include bone loss.
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