Although at the time of writing this, the 2020 report has yet to be released; in 2018/19 there were 69,208 injuries to employees reported, compared to 71,062 in the previous year. Now, whilst these statistics indicate a steady downward trend, the 2018/19 figure still equates to an estimated 4.7 million working days that were lost due to workplace injuries. It is therefore important that as a business you have a complete understanding of health and safety guidelines, and ensure that your business is RIDDOR (Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations) compliant in the event that an injury does occur in the workplace.
What is RIDDOR?
RIDDOR (Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations) is a law that requires all employers to record and report any work-related accidents. Employers must ensure that any accidents at work that cause an employee to be incapacitated for more than 3 days (including weekends) are recorded, and if the worker is incapacitated for more than 7 days, the incident must be reported. RIDDOR states that the employer has 15 days from the date of the accident to report the accident.
What must be reported?
Incidents only need to be reported if:
- There was an accident that lead to injury – RIDDOR defines an accident as a separate, identifiable, unintended incident, which causes physical injury. This specifically includes acts of non-consensual violence to people at work.
- The accident was ‘work-related’ – This is the case if any of the following played a significant role in the accident:
- The way the work was carried out,
- Any machinery, plant, substances or equipment used for work
- The condition of the site or premises where the accident happened
- The incident is a type that is ‘reportable’
What is a ‘Reportable Incident’?
The Death of Any Person if it Arises from a Work-Related Accident
All deaths which occur, to workers and non-workers (excluding suicide) must be reported if it arose as a result of a work-related injury as defined above. This includes an act of physical violence to a worker.
The list of reportable incidents is extensive (for more information take a look at the guidelines). However, some of the specified injuries include:
- Amputation of an arm, hand, finger, thumb, leg, foot or toe
- Permanent loss of sight or reduction of sight
- Serious burns (covering more than 10% of the body, or damaging the eyes, respiratory system or other vital organs)
- Crush injuries leading to internal organ damage
- Any loss of consciousness as a result of head injury, or asphyxia.
- Injuries which arise from working in a confined space which either leads to hypothermia or heat-induced illness, or results in admittance to hospital for more than 24 hours or resuscitation.
Non-Fatal Accidents to Non-Workers
Accidents which occur to members of the public, or others who are not classified as being at work but be report if they result in an injury and the person is taken directly from the scene to hospital for treatment. It is important to note that examinations do not class as treatment and if the person is only taken to hospital as a precaution where no injury is present this does not need to be reported.
Both employers and those who are self-employed must report any diagnosis of occupational diseases. These must be reported if they are likely to have been made worse or caused by work. These include things such as:
- Carpal Tunnel
- Occupational Dermatitis
- Occupational Cancer
A full list of occupational diseases can be found within the HSE guidelines, including further guidance on specific diseases.
A dangerous occurrence is defined as ‘certain, specified near-miss events’ by HSE. Not all of these events need to be reported however there are 27 which are relevant. These 27 can be found in more detail in the official HSE RIDDOR guidelines. An example of a ‘dangerous occurrence’ would be the accidental release of a harmful substance.
HSE reports only the below is reportable under RIDDOR (The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013) n regards to COVID-19:
* an unintended incident at work has led to someone’s possible or actual exposure to coronavirus. This must be reported as a dangerous occurrence.
* a worker has been diagnosed as having COVID 19 and there is reasonable evidence that it was caused by exposure at work. This must be reported as a case of disease.
* a worker dies as a result of occupational exposure to coronavirus.
What must be recorded?
As well as reporting any accidents that occur in the workplace, RIDDOR also require you to keep a record of:
- Any ‘reportable’ incidents
- Over-three day injuries
- Dangerous occurrence
If you are an employer who has to keep an accident book, the record you make in this will be enough.
Keeping a record will also allow you to have a greater overview of your workplace, risk assess and then develop solutions for any potential issues. In turn, this will help prevent injuries, ill health and control costs from accidental loss.
How to report
You can report any work place accident either online, visiting http://www.hse.gov.uk/riddor/ and completing the online form, or via the Incident Contact Centre on 0845 300 9923 (opening hours Monday to Friday 8.30am to 5pm)
Ensuring your facility is well maintained and compliant with all relevant safety regulations will help to reduce the amount of workplace accidents. For more information on how MSL Property Care Services can assist with ensuring you have a comprehensive maintenance plan, get in touch with us today.