Accidents at Work
When accidents occur in the workplace, you must notify the Health and Safety Executive or Local Authority by phone or through the on-line RIDDOR (Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013) reporting system. You should notify these authorities:
- Immediately in the event of a death or specified injury, such as a broken arm or leg, an amputation injury or where an employee or the self-employed person is seriously affected by, e.g. electric shock or poisoning, or where a member of the public is killed or taken to hospital.
- Immediately in the event of a dangerous occurrence, e.g. where something happens like a fire or explosion which stops work for more than 24 hours.
- Within 15 days of an ‘over-seven-day injury’, i.e. when an employee or self employed person has an accident at work and is unable to do their normal job for more than three days.
- As soon as possible after a work-related disease (as specified in RIDDOR).
- Immediately, if you supply, fill or import liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) in refillable containers, after any death or specified injury connected in any way with this LPG and confirm the notification within 14 days.
Other action to take when dealing with accidents at work:
- Take any action required to deal with the immediate risks, e.g. first aid, put out the fire, isolate any danger, fence off the area.
- Assess the amount and kind of investigation needed – if you have to disturb the site, take photographs and measurements first.
- Investigate – find out what happened and why.
- Take steps to stop something similar happening again.
- Also look at near misses and property damage. Often it is only by chance that someone wasn’t injured.
Accident at Work Checklist
Don’t just focus on individuals and the immediate causes; look also at how the job, the work environment and the organisation may have contributed.
To help with your investigation, find out the following:
- Details of injured personnel.
- Details of injury, damage or loss.
- What was the worst that could have happened?
- Could it happen again?
- What happened? Where? When?
- What was the direct cause?
- Were there standards in place for the premises, plant, substances, procedures involved?
- Were they adequate? Were they followed?
- Were the people up to the job?
- Were they competent, trained and instructed?
- What was the underlying cause? Was there more than one?
- What was meant to happen and what were the plans?
- How were the people organised?
- Would an inspection have picked up the problem earlier?
- Had it happened before? If so, why weren’t the lessons learnt?
Our health and safety consultants can prevent accidents at your workplace
Contact us for a consultation and our experienced health and safety consultants will support you in putting effective health and safety procedures into place to assist in preventing incidents in your business