Skip to Content


Proposed Data Collections Submitted for Public Comment and Recommendations

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

Published Document

This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

Start Preamble

In compliance with the requirement of Section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 for opportunity for public comment on proposed data collection projects, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will publish periodic summaries of proposed projects. To request more information on the proposed projects or to obtain a copy of the data collection plans and instruments, call 404-639-5960 or send comments to Daniel Holcomb, CDC Assistant Reports Clearance Officer, 1600 Clifton Road, MS-D74, Atlanta, GA 30333 or send an e-mail to

Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Written comments should be received within 60 days of this notice.

Proposed Project

Health Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance—Requests and Emerging Problems—Revision (OMB No. 0920-0260)—National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Background and Brief Description

In accordance with its mandates under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 and the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) responds to requests for health hazard evaluations (HHE) to identify chemical, biological or physical hazards in workplaces throughout the United States. Each year, NIOSH receives approximately 320 such requests. Most HHE requests come from the following types of companies: Service, manufacturing companies, health and social services, transportation, construction, agriculture, mining, skilled trade and construction.

A printed Health Hazard Evaluation request form is available in English and in Spanish. The form is also available on the Internet and differs from the printed version only in format and in the fact that it uses an Internet address to submit the form to NIOSH. Both the printed and Internet versions of the form provide the mechanism for employees, employers, and other authorized representatives to supply the information required by the regulations governing the NIOSH Health Hazard Evaluation program (42 CFR 85.3-1). In general, if employees are submitting the form it must contain the signatures of three or more current employees. However, regulations allow a single signature if the requestor: Is one of three (3) or fewer employees in the process, operation, or job of concern; or is any officer of a labor union representing the employees for collective bargaining purposes. An individual management official may request an evaluation on behalf of the employer. For the purpose of the burden estimates, employers includes government, other, and joint requests. About 20% of the total number of HHE requests received per year is identified specifically as management requests. The information provided is used by NIOSH to determine whether there is reasonable cause to justify conducting an investigation and provides a mechanism to respond to the requestor.

In the case of 25% to 50% of the health hazard evaluation requests received, NIOSH determines an on-site evaluation is needed. The primary purpose of an on-site evaluation is to help employers and employees identify and eliminate occupational health hazards. In most on-site evaluations employees are interviewed to help further define concerns, and in approximately 50% these evaluations (presently estimated to be about 80 facilities), questionnaires are distributed to the employees (averaging about 40 employees per site for this last subgroup). No specific interview form is Start Printed Page 40918used. The interview and survey questions are specific to each workplace and its suspected diseases and hazards, however, items are derived from standard medical and epidemiologic techniques. The request forms take an estimated 12 minutes to complete. The interview forms take 15-30 minutes to complete. An example of an interview and an HHE specific questionnaire used for two separate completed HHEs are included in the proposed data collection package.

NIOSH distributes interim and final reports of health hazard evaluations, excluding personal identifiers, to: Requesters, employers, employee representatives; the Department of Labor (Occupational Safety and Health Administration or Mine Safety and Health Administration, as appropriate); and, as needed, other state and Federal agencies.

NIOSH administers a follow-back program to assess the effectiveness of its health hazard evaluation program in reducing workplace hazards. This program entails the mailing of follow-back questionnaires to employer and employee representatives at all the workplaces where NIOSH conducted site visits. In a small number of instances, a follow-back on-site evaluation may be conducted. The initial follow-back questionnaire is administrated immediately following the site visits and takes about 15 minutes. Another follow-back questionnaire is sent a year later and requires about 15 minutes to complete. At 24 months, a final follow-back questionnaire regarding the completed evaluation is sent which takes about 15 minutes to complete.

For requests where NIOSH does not conduct an onsite evaluation, the requester receives a follow-back questionnaire 12 months after our response and a second one 24 months after our response. The first questionnaire takes about 10 minutes to complete and the second questionnaire takes about 15 minutes to complete.

Because of the large number of investigations conducted each year, the need to respond quickly to requests for assistance, the diverse and unpredictable nature of these investigations, and its follow-back program to assess evaluation effectiveness; NIOSH requests an umbrella clearance for data collections performed within the domain of its health hazard evaluation program. There is no cost to respondents other than their time.

Estimate of Annualized Burden Hours

Type of respondentFormNumber of respondentsNumber of responses per respondentAverage burden per response in hoursTotal burden hours
Employees and RepresentativesHealth Hazard Evaluation Request Form211112/6042
EmployersHealth Hazard Evaluation Request Form109112/6022
EmployeesHealth Hazard Evaluation specific interview example3200115/60800
EmployeesHealth Hazard Evaluation specific questionnaire example3440130/601720
Followback for onsite evaluations for Management, Labor and Requester Year 1Initial Site Visit survey form320115/6080
Year 1—Closeout for HHE with an On Site Evaluation320115/6080
Year 2—1 year Later HHE with an On Site Evaluation320115/6080
Followback for evaluations for Management, Labor and Requester without onsite evaluationYear 1—Closeout Survey cover letter and Forms120110/6020
Year 2—Closeout Survey Cover Letter and Forms120115/6030
Start Signature

Catina Conner,

Acting Reports Clearance Officer, Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

End Signature End Preamble

[FR Doc. 2011-17411 Filed 7-11-11; 8:45 am]