Accidents will always happen, no matter how many safety measures you take. Accidents in the workplace can range from minor injuries to something serious like amputation or a head injury, resulting in a loss of consciousness.
But what happens if you witness or experience an injury at work - how do you report and record such accidents? That is what we’re going to explain in this post. Read on to learn the correct procedures for reporting and recording accidents.
The Steps of Reporting An Accident
When an accident occurs, follow these steps to ensure that you handle and record the accident correctly, including filling out the right paperwork.
The Right Person
First of all, you need to have the right person or people who are competent to deal with reporting the accident - your appointed Competent Person. Someone who is sufficiently trained has relevant knowledge and experience and is proactive will be a good fit for this role. The chosen person must also be willing and thorough with their approach to Health and Safety.
Log the Accident
You should log the accident in your organisation's accident book. If you don’t have an accident book, you need to get one.
What You Should Record in Your Accident Book
In your accident book you should record the following details:
- The name of the person who is involved in the accident
- The gender, date of birth and job title of the person
- A description of the accident
- The date the accident happened
- The date the accident was reported
- The name and job title of the person logging the accident
- Whether the injured person is pregnant
- Whether the injured person was a child
It is important to update your accident book with the relevant details as soon as it is reasonably possible after the accident has occurred.
A formal investigation will be done next - this sounds more daunting than it is. The investigation will involve gathering witness statements, taking any relevant photographs of the area the accident happened and noting in detail what happened.
Is it Reportable?
This is all about whether your accident reporting needs to be escalated to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Our Health and Safety experts at Beaconrisk can help you determine whether or not the accident is reportable under RIDDOR, (Reporting of Injuries, Diseased and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations) - if it does need reporting, we will know how to best approach the HSE. Serious accidents should be reported under RIDDOR.
The severity of the situation must be correctly evaluated. If it is not a RIDDOR reportable accident and you log the accident with the Health and Executive as one, you might instigate an unnecessary investigation into your business.
Filling in the Forms
If the accident is reportable then you will need to complete an online form that’ll be stored in the HSE’s RIDDOR database. There are seven reports to choose from, including the following:
- Report of an injury
- Report of a dangerous occurrence
- Report of an injury offshore
- Report of a dangerous occurrence offshore
- Report of a case of disease
- Report of the flammable gas incident
- Report of a dangerous gas fitting
Prioritise on your forms which option is most important, as more than one may be relevant. RIDDOR works based on one report per event, rather than one per reportable issue.
Review Your Risk Assessments
It is always good practice to review risk assessments and internal policies after an accident or near accident have taken place. This will ensure you can identify any potential safety gaps that might have formed in your organisation since the last risk assessment took place and help to prevent such accidents from happening again in the future.
At Beaconrisk, we are the health and safety experts to help you in your industry. We specialise in the construction industry where accidents, both minor and major happen every single day.
It is a legal requirement for employers to meet the correct health and safety standards. At Beaconrisk we understand the difficulty in keeping on top of all safety regulations and laws, this is where we can help you, contact us for any help or advice. We have an endless amount of health and safety eLearning training courses for you and your employees to complete to ensure competent staff in all areas of health and safety.
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