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Construction Safety and Health
Outreach Program
U.S. Department of Labor
OSHA Office of Training and Education
May 1996

The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 requires most private sector employers to prepare and maintain records of work related injuries and illnesses. These records include the OSHA Form No. 200, Log and Summary of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses, and the OSHA Form No. 101, Supplementary Record of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses.

Employers Required to Keep Records

All employers with 11 or more employees in the following industries, as determined by their Standard Industrial Classification (SIC), must keep injury and illness records:

  • Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing (SIC's 01-02 and 07-09)
  • Oil and Gas Extraction (SIC 13)
  • Construction (SIC's 15-17)
  • Manufacturing (SIC's 20-39)
  • Transportation, Communications, and Public Utilities (SIC's 41-42 and 44-49)
  • Wholesale Trade (SIC's 50-51)
  • Building Materials, Hardware, Garden Supply and Mobile Home Dealers (SIC 52)
  • General Merchandise Stores (SIC 53)
  • Food Stores (SIC 54)
  • Hotels, Rooming Houses, Camps, and Other Lodging Places (SIC 70)
  • Repair Services (SIC's 75 and 76)
  • Amusement and Recreation Services (SIC 79)
  • Health Services (SIC 80)

Employers Normally Exempt, but Periodically Required to Keep Records

The following employers are normally exempt from these recordkeeping requirements unless notified in advance by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) that they have been selected to participate in the mandatory Annual Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses:

  1. Employers who had no more than ten employees (full- and part-time) at any time during the previous calendar year; or
  2. Employers who conduct business primarily in one of the following SIC's, regardless of the number of employees:

Retail Trade

55 Automotive Dealers and Gasoline Service Stations

56 Apparel and Accessory Stores

57 Furniture, Home Furnishings and Equipment Stores

58 Eating and Drinking Places

59 Miscellaneous Retail

Finance, Insurance and Real Estate

60 Banking

61 Credit Agencies other than Banks

62 Security and Commodity Brokers, and Services

63 Insurance

64 Insurance Agents, Brokers and Services

65 Real Estate

67 Holding and other Investment Offices


72 Personal Services

73 Business Services

78 Motion Pictures

81 Legal Services

82 Educational Services

83 Social Services

84 Museums, Botanical and Zoological Gardens

86 Membership Organizations

87 Engineering, Accounting, Research, Management, and Related Services

88 Private Households

89 Miscellaneous Services

These exemptions do not excuse any employer from coverage by OSHA or from compliance with all applicable safety and health standards (which may include other types of recordkeeping requirements).

The recordkeeping exemptions apply to all eligible workplaces under the jurisdiction of Federal OSHA. However, 25 states and territories operate their own OSHAs. Employers in the following areas should contact the state agency to determine if it has or intends to adopt the exemptions: Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oregon, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Virgin Islands, Washington, and Wyoming. Connecticut and New York cover state and local government employees only.

Records That Must Be Kept

OSHA requires the use of OSHA Form No. 200, the Log and Summary of Occupational Injuries, or an equivalent form. On the OSHA Log, employers provide some brief descriptive information and then use a simple check-off procedure to maintain a running total of occupational injuries and illnesses for the year. Authorized Federal and State government officials, employees, and their representatives are guaranteed access, upon request, to the injury and illness log for the establishment.

Employers are required to post an annual summary of occupational injuries and illnesses for the previous calendar year. The summary must be posted no later than February 1 and must remain in place until March 1.

OSHA Form No. 101 is used to supply supplementary information regarding each injury and illness entered on the log. This form names the person and describes the circumstances on his or her injury or illness. Substitute forms (such as workers' compensation reports) may be used if they contain all the specified information. Authorized government officials shall be provided access to these records also.

Injury and illness records shall be maintained at each workplace. In the absence of a regular workplace, records shall be maintained at some central location. The records shall be retained and updated for five years following the calendar year they cover.

Each workplace, regardless of the number of employees or type of business, must:

  • Display either an OSHA or State poster containing information for employees, and
  • Report to the nearest OSHA office within 8 hours all accidents which result in a work-related fatality or the hospitalization of three or more employees.

The BLS Survey

Each year BLS selects about 280,000 firms to take part in a survey used to calculate the job injury and illness rates for various industries nationwide. All employers selected for the survey are required by law to participate. As noted previously, employers that are normally exempt from OSHA recordkeeping are notified of their selection for the survey prior to the calendar year to which the survey relates.

The survey is used to monitor OSHA's progress and to assist the agency in setting standards, evaluating existing standards, scheduling inspections, and evaluating the performance of states and territories which operate their own OSHA-approved safety and health programs.

For More Information

For official instructions on recording occupational injuries and illnesses please refer to the Recordkeeping Guidelines for Occupational Injuries and Illnesses, 1986. You may obtain copies of the Guidelines and OSHA forms by calling the OSHA Area Office or the State OSHA Office in your jurisdiction.