- Standard Number:
OSHA requirements are set by statute, standards and regulations. Our interpretation letters explain these requirements and how they apply to particular circumstances, but they cannot create additional employer obligations. This letter constitutes OSHA's interpretation of the requirements discussed. Note that our enforcement guidance may be affected by changes to OSHA rules. Also, from time to time we update our guidance in response to new information. To keep apprised of such developments, you can consult OSHA's website at http://www.osha.gov.
THE ISSUES RELATED TO OSHA AND WORK AT HOME ARE PRESENTLY UNDER REVIEW. SEE ASSISTANT SECRETARY JEFFRESS' JANUARY 28, 2000 TESTIMONY REGARDING OSHA COVERAGE OF WORKING AT HOME.
June 21, 1993
Mr. Michael Hall
Safety/Emergency Response IBM
2000 Purchase Street
Purchase, New York 10577
Dear Mr. Hall:
Thank you for your facsimile dated June 1, requesting an interpretation for several OSHA injury and illness recordkeeping issues. Whenever possible, I will reference the Recordkeeping Guidelines for Occupational Injuries and Illnesses by citing the appropriate page and Q&A numbers.
Injuries and illnesses that result from an event or exposure off the employer's premises are work related if the worker was engaged in work related activities or was present as a condition of his or her employment (page 35, Section 2). These criteria must be applied to scenarios one and three outlined in your facsimile. If the employee was injured while performing duties in the interest of the company, the injury would be considered work related. If the employee was injured while performing normal living conditions, (e.g. eating), the injury would not be considered work related.
Because of the voluntary nature of the work outlined in scenario two, any injury or illness occurring to that employee should not be considered work related.
Employees off premises in nontravel status work within their normally scheduled hours and normal geographic area of operation. An interpretation of "normal geographic area" includes the town or city where the employee normally works and directly adjoining municipalities. Employees in travel status must either be: (1) outside their normal area of operation, or (2) working off premises for more than a normal workday (such as staying overnight) (page 37, Q&A C-22).
Injuries incurred during normal commutes to and from work are not considered recordable (page 36, C-19). However, for employees who are "on call", travel to and from work is not considered the normal commute and any injury occurring during such travel would be considered work related. This applies to employees responding and traveling to emergency situations.
I hope you find this information useful. If you have any further questions, please contact my staff at Area Code (202) 219-6463.
Stephen A. Newell
Office of Statistics