The U.S Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced that its 2007 Site-Specific Targeting (SST) plan will focus on approximately 4,150 high-hazard worksites in its primary list for unannounced comprehensive inspections for the coming year.

"Over the past nine years, OSHA has used a site-specific targeting inspection program based on injury and illness data," said Assistant Secretary of Labor for OSHA Edwin G. Foulke Jr. "This approach allows us to focus our enforcement efforts on those workplaces with the highest numbers of injuries and illnesses."

This year's program (SST-07) stems from the agency's Data Initiative for 2006, which surveyed approximately 80,000 employers to obtain their injury and illness numbers for 2005. The program will initially cover worksites on the primary list that reported 11 or more injuries or illnesses resulting in days away from work, restricted work activity, or job transfer for every 100 full-time employees (known as the DART rate).

The primary list will also include sites based on a Days Away from Work Injury and Illness (DAFWII) rate of 9.0 or higher. Employers not on the primary list who reported DART rates of between 7.0 and 11.0, or DAFWII rates of between 4.0 and 9.0, will be placed on a secondary list for possible inspection. The national incident DART rate in 2005 for private industry was 2.4, while the national incident DAFWII rate was 1.4.

The agency will also randomly select and inspect approximately 100 workplaces (with 100 or more employees) nationwide that reported low injury and illness rates for the purpose of reviewing the actual degree of compliance with OSHA requirements. These establishments are selected from those industries with DART and DAFWII rates that are higher than the national rate.

Finally, the agency will include on the primary list some establishments that did not respond to the 2006 data survey.