What to do if you have an accident at work
If you have an accident at work there are a number of steps you need to take. The first of which is to report the accident.
Reporting an accident at work
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has strict rules about reporting an accident at work known as Reporting of Injuries Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR).
You must report any accident at work to your employer as quickly as possible. They must then record the incident in a log book. What may seem like a minor injury can turn into an ongoing problem so do not dismiss an injury at work, report it.
The information contained in the accident log book may form part of the evidence if you later make a claim for compensation, so make sure it is accurate. It should include the time and location of the accident; the nature of the injury; who was involved; and if there were any witnesses.
Accidents at work can include fractures to the arms or legs; soft tissue injuries; amputation of limbs; crush and burn injuries but it is advisable to report any injury.
What will my employer do with the accident information?
When recording the accident your employer should look for patterns of work-related injury. Your employee must address any health and safety risks highlighted by a pattern of injury.
Depending on the nature of the accident, your employer must make a report under RIDDOR to the HSE if you are absent from work for three days or more as a result of your injury. If you are concerned that your employer will not report your accident to the HSE, you can go to www.hse.gov.uk and report the works’ accident yourself.
How do I make a claim for compensation following an accident at work?
You must lodge any claim for compensation following an accident at work within three years of the date of the accident. Your employer must be at fault for you to make a claim. If you are a member of a trade union, you should seek their advice in the first instance.