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RegSenseInjury and Illness RecordkeepingOSHA RecordkeepingBest ResultsFAQUSAEnglishFocus AreaInjury and Illness Recordkeeping
For injury and illness recordability, is the parking lot considered part of the work environment? What if the employee has not clocked in yet?
The parking lot issue arises from the definition of “work environment” in §1904.5(b). OSHA defines the work environment as “the establishment and other locations where one or more employees are working or are present as a condition of their employment. The work environment includes not only physical locations, but also the equipment or materials used by the employee during the course of his or her work.”
Employees are present in the parking lot as a condition of employment, which means the parking lot is part of the “work environment.” As stated in §1904.5(a), “You must consider an injury or illness to be work-related if an event or exposure in the work environment either caused or contributed to the resulting condition or significantly aggravated a pre-existing injury or illness.” This also means that the recordability is not affected by whether or not the employee has clocked in for the day -- the employee is present as a condition of employment.
For example, if an employee drives to work, parks in an employee parking lot, gets out of the car and slips on some ice with the result being a broken arm, the case is recordable. The injury was caused by an exposure in the work environment, and does not specifically meet an exemption given in §1904.5(b)(2), which includes (among others) employees who are present as members of the general public.
The confusing part is that the “work environment” must have some connection to the workplace. For example, if an establishment does not have a designated parking area, employees may have to park on a public street. In this case, the public street is not considered part of the work environment, partly because the employer has no control over the conditions of the street (such as snow removal). On the other hand, if the company forms an agreement to use and maintain a designated area of a larger parking lot that is shared by several employers, there is arguably a connection to the workplace. Thus, the parking area could be considered part of the work environment.
Chapter 5 of OSHA’s Recordkeeping Policies and Procedures Manual does answer a few Frequently Asked Questions about parking lots that may provide guidance.
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['Injury and Illness Recordkeeping']
['Injury and Illness Recordkeeping', 'OSHA Recordkeeping']
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