What Does Incident Report Mean?
An incident report is a formal document that details the facts related to an incident at the workplace. The report usually relates to an accident or injury that has occurred on the worksite, but it can also pertain to any unusual worksite occurrences such as near misses, security lapses, property and equipment damage, and health and safety issues.
Incident reports should be completed as soon as possible following an incident or injury. The report might only be used or circulated within the company, but if severe enough, it will need to be sent to insurers, regulatory bodies, or even the police.
Safeopedia Explains Incident Report
Any incident that involves worker safety should be recorded, no matter how insignificant it may seem. An investigation of what happened should be undertaken as soon as possible after the incident occurs and after any injured persons have been taken care of. The report that is generated as a result should provide a full account of what took place.
The Importance of an Incident Report
Incident reports indicate that there have been lapses in the workplace's safety protocols. Hence, reporting and documenting an incident is very important to identify the risks, failures and hazards that led to the incident.
Analyzing these reports can help organizations implement necessary changes, improvements, and corrective actions to prevent future incidents. An incident report will help:
- Prevent more serious accidents
- Improve existing health and safety practices
- Save time and resources
- Protect the company from financial losses and bad reputation
- Instill a sense of confidence in the employees
Incidents That Need to Be Reported
Four main types of incidents should be reported in an organization:
- Unexpected Event: These events include unexpected incidents or accidents that result in fatal, non-fatal physical injury, or serious psychological injury to workers.
- Near Misses: These events include incidents or accidents that had the potential to cause harm but did not do so.
- Adverse Events: These events are related to adverse reactions to medicine, vaccines, or medical devices used for treating a medical condition or situation.
- Awareness Events: This involves reporting any risks of potential incidents or accidents that can take place in the line of duty. The risks could be faulty or malfunctioning equipment, or the lack of safety equipment, training, and controls. The report must be communicated to all employees so that they can take the necessary steps to mitigate the risk.
Inside an Incident Report
In addition to a description of the incident, the report should include:
- Type of incident
- The location of the incident including date and time
- Details of the injured person
- A list of witnesses to the incident or injury
- Detailed description and severity of the injury
- A description of the immediate measures taken in response to the incident
- Detailed description of the treatment after the incident
- Any anomalies that might have contributed to the incident
- Photo or video documentation of the event or its aftermath can also be included in an incident report
- Analysis of the incident