Incident Investigation And Reporting | What You Need To Know

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What you need to know after an incident happened at the workplace

What you need to know after an incident happened at the workplace

Don’t press the panic button!

Safety management is an integral aspect of an organisation’s work culture. However, despite having in place systems and processes for risk mitigation, incidents do occur. This is especially true for hazardous worksites such as the offshore oil & gas, construction, mining and heavy engineering industries.

Most people react naturally and spontaneously when an incident takes place – they panic. However, the mantra is to ‘stay cool’. Panic is an infectious feeling; it spreads widely, creates confusion and may lead to chaos in a place that has already witnessed a disturbance.

Dos & Don’ts after an incident

Certain guiding principles must be followed in the event of an incident. These Dos and Don’ts will help understand the precautions to be taken.

The Dos:

  • Stop the job and make the situation safe and stable.
  • Cordon off the area.
  • Summon help if possible, without putting yourself at risk.    
  • Prevent further damage, devastation or harm by taking appropriate actions, viz, switch power off, stop vehicles approaching area, etc.
  • Locate the first aid kit and attend to the injured (if any).
  • Call the emergency services.
  • Attend to any injured personnel or personnel involved in the incident and ensure their wellbeing is being dealt with. 
  • Report the incident to your superiors/corporate office.
  • Appoint a trained spokesperson to communicate with media and families. 
  • Be transparent and update employees/media/public of the development.
  • Isolate the incident area and all equipment / documents associated with the incident occurrence.
  • Establish an incident investigation team.
  • Report on the root causes and remedies taken after investigation have been completed.

The Don’ts 

  • Don’t panic.
  • Don’t attempt to make repairs unless you are authorised, competent and qualified to do so.
  • Don’t spread rumours.
  • Don’t tamper with anything at the incident scene; it may have to be preserved for investigation.

Post-incident reporting & actions

Legal aspects

As per law, it is mandatory to report certain types of incidents to the concerned authorities. Some of these include death, fracture, amputation, shoulder/hip dislocation, loss of eyesight and asphyxiation, among others. Most mandatory reporting systems and requirements have time frames to make the report, failure to do so can lead to more issues for the company.

Financial implications

Financial loss as a result of an incident could vary – from a modest medical expense to huge sums in compensation, out-of-court settlements and heavy litigation costs. Losses also could be in the form of damaged assets like machinery, buildings, facilities, etc and reputation of the organisation or individuals involved leading to loss of business in future.

Reporting goes a long way in taking appropriate measures to prevent further incidents and thus ultimately save money for the company.

Health issues

As per protocol, a Registered Medical Practitioner will report to the employer through the appropriate channel about a reportable disease.

Moral obligations

The safety of co-workers is as important as the well-being of the individual self. Though no employee would like his fellow worker to get hurt or suffer in any way, factual reporting is essential, in order to implement corrective measures so as to reduce the likelihood of future occurrences.

KB Associates – experts in unbiased, meticulous incident investigation & reporting

At KB Associates, we apply our deep expertise in ‘Incident Investigation and Reporting’ to discover what went wrong and what are the corrective action required. Our investigation solution involves: detailed and independent investigation and review; establishment of root causes, underlying causes and immediate causes; detailed and comprehensive reporting and making recommendations of corrective measures to prevent similar occurrences taking place in future.

To know more about our Incident Investigation and Reporting services, please contact us.

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