Frequently asked questions
Reporting an accident or incident is a legal requirement. Authorities can identify risks and how they arise and the possibility of an investigation. Information regarding an accident can be used for future risk assessments as well as identifying risks that may cause others harm. Reports also show authorities about serious incidents and infectious diseases and records also help to prevent injuries and control costs spent on accident compensation.
A RIDDOR report is only necessary when the accident is work related and it results in an injury of a type which is reportable (below):
As defined by HSE, all the below are reportable injuries:
- Deaths - if work-related
- Fractures (not fingers, toes or thumbs)
- Loss or reduction of sight
- Internal organ damage from crush injuries
- Burns damaging vital organs, eyes, 10% of the body or respiratory system)
- Scalpings that require treatment at a hospital
- Head injuries or asphyxia that cause unconsciousness
- Any other injury that comes from working in an enclosed space (e.g. hypothermia, more than 24-hour hospital admittance or the need of resuscitation)
- Injuries that require more than 7 days of absence from work
- Injuries to non-workers in the workplace - those that require hospital admittance
The Oxford dictionary defines an accident as ‘An unfortunate incident that happens unexpectedly and unintentionally, typically resulting in damage or injury.’
Obviously, the first thing you must do if there's an accident is to respond appropriately - such as calling for assistance or for an ambulance. Then get down as much relevant information as you can and create a report in the format required by your organisation. If the incident is reportable under RIDDOR, the report must be received within 10 days of the incident; injuries which result in a person being off work for over 7 consecutive days need to be reported within 15 days.