What Is a Lost Time Accident?

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A lost time accident is an accident occurring at work that results in at least one full day away from work duties. This does not count the day on which the injury occurred or the day on which the employee returns to the job.

The number of days counted in the lost days’ report includes weekends, holidays and days used for vacation. It may also include days that the injured person is on restricted duty or not allowed to continue with regular job duties.

The relevant OSHA guidelines were updated in 2001. Previously, only work days were allowed to be included as part of the lost days. The guidelines state that an employer must only log up to 180 days of lost time, including restricted duty and job transfers, as the result of an accident that results in an injury. Any accident that results in lost days from work must be reported, per OSHA guidelines, whether it occurred at the place of business or on a remote work site. The accident must be reported in the OSHA 300 log with the number of days. An estimated number of days must be used if the injury is expected to be long-term.