Accidents at Work
Employers must make every effort to avoid accidents in the
workplace, whether to their own employees, contractors, visitors or
members of the public. However, should accidents occur, they must
have arrangements in place to deal with them, and to identify the
There should be an accident book or other
recording system where any incidents which require first aid or
result in the inability of an employee to continue to work can be
recorded (this is a requirement under social security law where
there are 10 or more employees). Accident books are available from
good book shops and office suppliers. After a record is completed,
the section containing the injured persons personal details should
be removed and stored securely, in order to comply with the Data
The accident records should be reviewed every
so often in order that trends can be identified. The occurrence of
accidents may indicate hazards which are not adequately controlled
and the review may identify these.
Reporting of accidents
Some accidents are required to be reported to
the health and safety enforcing authority. Any accident must be
reported directly to the Incident Contact Centre (ICC).
Some incidents must be reported to the
enforcing authority as soon as possible. These include:
- Major injuries
- Certain dangerous occurrences
- Certain occupational diseases
Injuries which necessitate more than seven
days off work must be reported within fifteen days of the
Reports must be made to the Incident Contact
Centre by filling in the appropriate online form.
Fatal and major accidents can also be reported by telephone to 0845
The enforcing authority may investigate
accidents that have been reported and then advise the employer on
how to reduce the risk of injury, ill-health and accidental loss in
the future. In some cases enforcement action may follow.
Further information regarding accidents and
their reporting can be found on the HSE website.