The Occupational Safety and Health Administration announced Tuesday a new directive to guide in the process of notifying family members following a workplace fatality. OSHA representatives are now required to reach out to the families initially to communicate the investigation process and timeline, and to continue with updates throughout the investigation. Upon the investigation’s closure, representatives will explain the findings and address family members' questions. Employers must notify OSHA within eight hours of the workplace fatality.

“This directive ensures that OSHA receives the necessary information from the family to assist in the investigation, and keeps the family informed throughout the investigation and the settlement process,” said Dr. David Michaels, assistant secretary of labor for occupational safety and health, in a release.

For more information, visit OSHA’s directive page or