The Total Case Incident Rate (TCIR) is defined as the number of work-related injuries per 100 full-time workers during a one year period. OSHA uses the TCIR to monitor high-risk industries, and they also allow EHS managers to track incidents and discover patterns across different departments or facilities.
Organizations can track the frequency of workplace injuries and illnesses over time through the TCIR. It is often also referred to as the OSHA incident rate or total recordable incident rate (TRIR). The TCIR and TRIR are calculated the same way and can be used interchangeably.
How to calculate your company's TCIR / TRIR ?
You can calculate your TCIR or TRIR by using the following formula:
- (Number of OSHA Recordable injuries and illnesses X 200,000) / Employee total 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.
For example, say a company had recordable incidents that occurred during a year. If the organization has around 1,000 employees that work 40 hours a week, this number may not be consequential or indicative of a greater problem. If, however, a smaller company only employing 10 or 15 people reports the same number of recordable incidents, OSHA may be concerned that the company is failing to follow proper healthy and safety procedures.
OSHA also considers industry risk levels when examining TCIR/TRIR rates. For example, if a logging company or intensive manufacturer has a relatively high incident rate, this may be attributed to the dangerous working environment. However, if a high rate comes from a low-risk retailer or manufacturer, this may be a sign that the organization needs 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 using the following formula:
- (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 lower than your TCIR. This is because only the more severe OSHA recordable injuries and illnesses are included in your DART rate.
How are incident rates used?
Incident rates serve as a benchmark that you can use to compare and evaluate your company's safety program against other organizations or your performance in past years. It's a good idea to keep an eye on these metrics as they play a key role in improving safety performance.
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.
"Incident rates are used throughout many industries."
"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 / TRIR?
Total Case Incident Rates differ from industry to industry; with certain industries having a significantly higher risk than others. Many organizations compare themselves to other organizations with the same NAICS code to determine a good TCIR/TRIR score. 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 rate of 12.3. The light truck and utility vehicle manufacturing industry had a TCIR rate of 7.7 in 2016.