Incident reporting and investigation is an extremely important part of the safety management system. The primary purpose of this is to improve health and safety performance by:
- Exploring the reasons for the event and identifying the immediate, underlying and root causes
- Identifying mitigating actions to improve the health and safety management system by improving risk control, preventing a recurrence and reducing financial losses and sickness absence
For every 600 near misses that occur there is one major accident. This major accident could easily be a fatality. A near miss is an incident with the potential to result in a loss, whereas an accident is an incident which does actually result in a loss. So, if you stop all the near misses from happening then, logically, the one major accident or fatality won’t happen. Heinrich’s accident triangle below shows a relationship between the number of accidents resulting in serious injury, minor injuries or no injury.
Serious accidents have the same root (highest level) causes as minor accidents, as do incidents with a potential for serious loss (near miss). It is these root causes that bring about the accident and the severity is very often a matter of chance. So, if you prevent the incident from happening in the first place the potentially severity and immediate cause (substandard act or condition that leads directly to the accident) of the incident is of little consequence.
There are some incidents which need to be reported to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 (RIDDOR). These need to be reported so that:
- the HSE can identify how and why risks occur, and whether they should be investigated
- the HSE can provide advice to employers on how to prevent these situations occurring
- the HSE can develop risk assessments, and prevent injuries and ill-health nationally
I can provide you with a simple, but very comprehensive incident investigation form which can be used for investigating any incident at any level. This form includes lessons learnt and root cause analysis.
I can advise you on incidents that should be reported to the HSE under RIDDOR and I can complete the on-line RIDDOR reporting form for you.
I can provide all the training required for incident investigation and management and I can work with you to monitor incident reports for trends to identify control measures to put into place to prevent recurrence of these incidents.