Definition - What does Incident mean?

An incident is an occurrence of an unusual event, apparently of minor significance. An incident in the context of health, safety and environment is the occurrence of any unintended event that disturbs normal modus operandi. As per occupational safety and health administration (OSHA) "an incident is an unplanned, undesired event that adversely affects completion of a task." An incident is also referred to as a "near miss." As defined by the department of health safety of Memorial University, it is an "event that has the potential to lead to an accident."

Safeopedia explains Incident

An incident is a situation where an accident just managed to be avoided by chance or by fate. It is a clear warning that there is something wrong somewhere in the workplace and it needs to be thoroughly investigated to take preventative actions as to not have the same even reoccur. Incidents must be reported to the management by the supervisor concerned. It should then be investigated by a competent individual(s). Findings and recommendations would suggest the future plan for corrective measures to be taken.

Immediate causes of incidents are:

  • Substandard actions - improper procedure, use of equipment, use of personal protective equipment and under influence of drugs etc.
  • Substandard conditions - use of defective equipment, personal protective equipment, inadequate warning or administrative control, hazardous environment, inappropriate sound, light and temperature conditions etc.
This definition was written in the context of Occupational Health and Safety
Share this:

Connect with us

Email Newsletter

Join thousands receiving the latest content and insights on health and safety industry.