Organizations can track the frequency of workplace injuries and illnesses over time through Total Case Incident Rates (TCIR), also called OSHA incident rate or total recordable incident rates (TRIR). These rates are useful to OSHA for tracking high-risk industries, and they also allow company supervisors a way to track incidents and discover patterns across different departments or facilities.
How do you calculate your company's TCIR ?
You can find TCIR by using the following formula:
- (Number of OSHA Recordable injuries and illnesses X 200,000) / Employee hours worked = Total Case Incident Rate
To break this formula down, employers multiply the number of OSHA Recordable injuries and illnesses occurring throughout the year by 200,000. To learn more about how to determine an OSHA recordable injury check out our Ultimate OSHA Recordkeeping Guide.
This 200,000 represents 100 employees working 40 hours a week for 50 weeks during a calendar year. Then, this number is divided by the total number of hours a company's employees worked.
"Incident rates are used throughout many industries."
For example, say a company had 10 employee incidents during a year. If the organization has around 1,000 employees working 40 hours a week, this number may not be consequential or indicative of a greater problem. If, however, a small company only employing 10 or 15 people reports the same number, OSHA may be concerned that the company is failing to follow proper healthy and safety procedures.
OSHA also considers the high-risk nature of certain industries as well. For example, if a logging company or intensive manufacturer has a relatively high incident rate, this may be attributed to the dangerous working environment. Though, if a high rate comes from a low-risk retailer or manufacturer, the organization may need to take serious steps to address this problem.
What is a DART Rate ?
A DART Rate stands for "Days Away Restricted or Transferred" Rate and includes only those OSHA recordable injuries or illness that resulted in days away from work; restricted duty or transfer of duties. The DART rate is calculated the same way as TCIR but as follows:
- (Number of OSHA Recordable injuries and illnesses that resulted in Days Away; Restricted; Transferred X 200,000) / Employee hours worked = Days Away Restricted Transferred Rate
In most cases your DART will be less than your TCIR as you are only including the more severe OSHA recordable injury and illnesses in your DART rate.
How are incident rates used?
As incident rates are used throughout many industries, the type of industry and nature of the work is taken into account when analyzing past data. OSHA officials also state that statistics indicate past performance and aren't necessarily indicative of future incidents or procedures. For similar industries, OSHA may compare certain safety data of certain companies to others within the same business sector.
"Although OSHA could potentially use this data for enforcement action, unless incident rates are consistently high for a small company over a number of years, they will not normally target particular industries or companies for enforcement action," New Mexico Mutual, a provider of medical benefits for injured workers, explained in a report.
What is a good TCIR?
Total Case Incident Rates differ from industry to industry; with certain industries significantly more high risk than others. Many organizations compare themselves to other organizations with the same NAICS code to determine a good TCIR. Overall, the United State Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports a TCIR of 2.9 cases per 100 full-time equivalent workers for private industry in 2016.
However the BLS reports for 2016 also include multiple high risk industries with TCIR rates between 13 and 7. Veterinary services led private industry with the highest TCIR in 2016 with a TCIR of 12.3 and light truck and utility vehicle manufacturing had a TCIR rate of 7.7 in 2016.