Accident / Incident & Near Miss Management System
This procedure is in effect from September 2011 and supersedes all previous versions. The procedure must be applied for any accident/incident on University premises or involving any member of staff/student on University business in the UK or abroad.
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1.0 Definitions and key phrases
The following acronyms and phrases are used throughout this procedure.
RIDDOR – Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulation
DSO – Departmental Safety Co-ordinator
OSHEU – Occupational Safety, Health and Environment Unit
IFF – Incident Investigation Form
IRF – Incident Reporting Form. There may be situations where employees, students or visitors may be involved in an accident. All work related accidents, dangerous occurrences, near misses and incidents which have resulted in injury or damage to property should be properly investigated and reported on the University’s Health and Safety Accidents/Incident Investigation Report Form.
1.1 An accident
The Health and Safety Executive define an accident as “any unplanned event that resulted in injury or ill health of people, or damage or loss to property, plant, materials or the environment or a loss of business opportunity”.
Example: A builder dropping a brick from a height, which caused injury to a person underneath, would be classed as an accident.
1.2 Near miss
A near miss can be defined as, “any event, which under slightly different circumstances, may have resulted in injury or ill health of people, or damage or loss to property, plant, materials or the environment or a loss of business opportunity”.
Example: A builder dropping a brick from a height, which just missed a person standing underneath, would be classed as a “near-miss” incident. This incident did not cause an injury to a person but, under slightly different circumstances (the person standing nearer to the contact point) the person may have been injured.
1.3 Dangerous occurrence
A dangerous occurrence can be defined as,“any incident that has a high potential to cause death or serious injury” and are specified by the Reporting of Incidents, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 1995.
1.4 Environmental incidents and miscellaneous incidents.
Anything untoward such as threatening behaviour, physical violence, work related road traffic accident, leaks, odours etc. should also be reported. These may have underlying implications that impact on Safety, Health and the Environment.
For the purpose of this procedure, where the term ‘Incident’ appears, this incorporates elements from 1.1 - 1.4
2.0 What is it?
The University’s accident/incident reporting procedure is an important tool in enabling the University to learn lessons from incidents that either did or had the potential to cause harm. It is designed to comply with the statutory requirements of the Reporting of Injuries, Disease and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR) 1995.
Which accidents/incidents should be reported? Quite simply all, no matter how trivial they may appear to be. All reports should be investigated by line managers/supervisors and the information gained will be useful in preventing a similar accident or incident. The information is stored locally within the School/Directorate and on the OSHEU Accident Reporting System which constitutes the Accident Book.
Once the report is received an investigation will then be undertaken by School/Directorate staff, which may be followed by an investigation by OSHEU if circumstances dictate. (Procedure on accident investigation is available on the OSHEU website: http://cardiff.ac.uk/osheu/resources/Accident%20Incident%20Investigation%20Form%202011v3.doc.
The objective of the investigation will be to establish the circumstances of the accident/incident and to learn lessons; not to apportion blame. This may include seeking statements from witnesses to the accident/incident and preparing reports in conjunction with the School/Directorate concerned.
Whilst it is a legal requirement that staff report accidents/incidents and cooperate with investigations the important reason for doing this is to help prevent others being hurt in the future. It is the responsibility of individuals to notify their management of anything untoward that could impact on the health and safety of individuals and the working environment. The Incident Form should be completed as honestly and objectively as possible with a focus on the facts rather than opinions and hearsay
A copy should be sent to OSHEU and a copy retained by the School/Directorate.
3.0 Who should report?
It is the responsibility of individual employees to report accidents/incidents to their Line Manager and the Departmental Safety Officer (DSO) as soon as possible. In most cases, individual employees will complete their own accident report form but it is important that this form is forwarded to the DSO. All accidents/incidents must be reported by the injured party, First Aider present or witness involved. Where the injured party is off work either owing to the injury or on leave, the Line Manager may complete the form on their behalf.
Students are encouraged to report incidents/accidents to their lecturers, supervisors, course administrators, reception or as instructed at their induction. Where the injured party is not present either owing to the injury or otherwise, the Lecturer/Supervisor may complete the form on their behalf. Reporting of incidents prevents similar occurrences and highlights areas for improvement in support of the student learning experience.
Contractors operating on the University’s premises will be responsible for the reporting of accidents/incidents related to their work in accordance with their own procedures. Contractors should be advised that a copy must be provided to the University officer responsible for the contract and a copy also forwarded to OSHEU.
For an incident involving any activity associated with Cardiff University, involving a representative of Cardiff University or occurring on University premises an Accident Form must be completed and sent to the responsible School/Directorate and a copied to OSHEU.
4.0 When and what to report?
Whenever an accident/incident occurs to any person on University premises or affiliated with University work in the UK or abroad an Accident Report Form should be completed as soon as possible. If the accident/incident has resulted in serious harm/damage, the person has been taken to hospital, there has been absence from work as a result or there has been a dangerous occurrence with the potential for serious harm then the Head of School/Directorate and the Director of the Occupational Safety, Health and Environment Unit (OSHEU) must be notified immediately.
5.0 How to report?
If you are completing the form by hand please complete the form clearly using block capitals. If you are completing the form electronically please use a suitable easy to read font such as Arial or Trebuchet.
The DSO for the School/Directorate will complete the ‘DSO Ref’ field that is located on the upper right portion of the form, which is a suggested reference system for the School/Directorate for their records. OSHEU on receipt of the incident will then complete the ‘OSHEU Ref’ which is generated by the University accident reporting system. These fields are located on numerous pages in the event that the pages/investigation should become separated.
5.1 The Form Process
The process utilises the following forms:
5.2 Completing the Incident Reporting Form
Stage 1 – Details of the individuals involved – normally completed by injured party, First Aider or person witness to the incident.
It is important that this section is completed as thoroughly as possible to assist the investigator and to enable communication with those involved in the incident.
Stage 2 : Details of the incident – normally completed by injured party, First Aider or witness to the incident. This section should be completed as honestly and objectively as possible. All fields where possible should be completed and the form signed appropriately with as much information entered as possible. When stage 1 and 2 complete the form should be passed to the responsible person (see stage 3)
Stage 3 : Details of preliminary investigation – normally completed by line manager for staff or a University employee responsible for the student/contractor/location/event etc.
This section should be completed as honestly and objectively as possible with a focus on the facts rather than opinions and hearsay. All fields where possible should be completed and the form signed appropriately with as much information entered as possible. When completed the form should be passed onto the DSO for assessment as to whether further investigation is required and a copy sent to OSHEU. If it is deemed that further investigation is required then the Incident investigation form (IIF) should be used to record the findings of the investigation. If following receipt of the Incident report OSHEU believe that further investigation is required where it has been deemed not necessary (examples could include lack of suitable and sufficient controls to prevent reoccurrence, wider impact on others etc) then OSHEU will request that an IIF is completed. This should be conducted as soon as possible by the responsible officer and the details recorded on the investigation form (IIF).
5.3 The Investigation
The investigation process that is undertaken will help to identify what led to the Incident occurring and from this action points can be put in place to help prevent reoccurrence and to assist with closing out the Investigation.
This part of the form does not have to be sent with the Incident Reporting form to OSHEU and can follow at a later date if it is specified that further investigation is to be undertaken at stage 3. The Investigation Form (IFF) should only be completed by the Line Manager/Supervisor or DSO. Where no investigation form is submitted and the Incident form is deemed to require one by OSHEU, then a request will be made to the School/Directorate via the DSO.
For further information on the Incident Investigation process please see the Investigation Guidance on the OSHEU website:
6.0 What happens after you submit the Incident Reporting form to OSHEU?
On submission of the Incident Reporting Form to OSHEU two processes take place. The form at first will be stored on the electronic database which constitutes the Accident Book and itself generates correspondence to send to the individual directly named and involved. This correspondence will go also to University Insurers the individuals DSO’s and also to those with a level of responsibility for the area where the incident occurred. The correspondence that is generated acknowledges Cardiff University have been notified of an alleged incident as well as reminding the individual involved to notify OSHEU of the length of time they have been absent from the University as a possible result of the Incident. It is still the responsibility of the individual to notify their line manager/supervisor not just OSHEU that they have been absent. It is important that where applicable OSHEU are informed as soon as possible whether an individual has been absent as a result of an incident (including weekends if applicable) as this circumstance may mean that the incident is reportable to the Health and Safety Executive. OSHEU will decide on behalf of the University whether an accident/incident is reportable under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR) 1995. Where this is the case OHSEU will notify the HSE on behalf of the University. Accident and incident information will be used for data and trend analysis to help with the management of Safety, Health and Environment throughout the University.
Second to this will be the Schools/Directorates internal investigation which is paramount to reducing the risk and likelihood of reoccurrence and is detailed in the Accident Investigation Guidance separate to this document. There is no set order of when an investigation should be completed but it should be done as soon as possible.
7.1 Trade Union Safety Representatives
Trade Union members are at liberty to inform their Trade Union Safety Representative of any accident/incident in which they are involved. Safety Representatives may investigate accidents/incidents in accordance with the Safety Representatives and Safety Committees Regulations.
7.2 Data and Trend Analysis
OSHEU will undertake analysis of accident/incident data in order to assess the University’s approach to preventing and tackling accidents and incidents. Such data may also be used in Committees and Board Meetings in the management of safety throughout the University. Individual’s personal details will not be used for data or trend analysis.
7.3 Dealing with legal claims and solicitors
If an individual is approached by a legal representative then in that instance the individual should refer that representative to the Insurance Officer as there is a strict time limit to respond. The insurance officers contact details are located below.
7.4 Dealing with Press Interest
If an individual is approached by a representative of the media (Television, press etc) then in that instance the individual should refer that representative to the Communications and International Relations Division (CAIRD), details below.
Any enquiries by a representative of the media should also contact CAIRD, see below.
7.5 Information Access
Individuals who wish to view their incident entry on the accident/incident reporting system (which constitutes the accident/incident book) may do so providing they give at least 48 hours notice to OSHEU.
8.0 Contact Information
Communications and International Relations Division (CAIRD)
Insurance Officer, Cardiff University, 9th Floor, McKenzie House, 30/36 Newport Road. CARDIFF. CF24 0DE
Occupational Safety Health and Environment Unit
9.0 Diagram of process