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WHAT TO DO IN CASE OF AN INCIDENT OF ACCIDENT AT THE WORKPLACE

Immediate Incident Response and Notification

  • Sequence of immediate response actions after an injury incident: -

  • Protect your own health and safety.

  • Protect the health and safety of others.

  • Provide aid to any injured persons involved in the incident.

  • If necessary, call for the workplace first aider.

  • If necessary, call emergency services.

  • If applicable, call security to co-ordinate access for emergency services.

  • If applicable, take essential action to make the site safe or to prevent a further incident.

  • Notify the Manager and SHEQ Officer.

  • ALL INJURIES must be reported immediately by completing page one (1) of the Incident Report and Investigation Form and send to the Senior SHEQ Officer and SHEQ Manager.

When a severe injury occurred and after injured persons has been assisted:

  • Do not disturb the incident site any further until it is confirmed that the incident does not require notification to a regulatory authority, or until an inspector has authorised the disturbance of the site.

  • Upon written confirmation that the site can be disturbed, site restoration or repair work may commence and the necessary arrangements for the site to be made permanently safe may commence.

Sequence of immediate response actions after a high-potential (no injury) incident: -

  • Protect your own health and safety.

  • Protect the health and safety of others.

  • If applicable, take essential action to make the site safe or to prevent a further incident.

  • If it is an environmental incident, take the necessary action to limit the extent of harm to the environment and to prevent such from escalating.

  • Notify the Manager and Senior SHEQ Officer.

  • High Potential Incidents must be reported immediately by completing page one (1) of the Incident Report and Investigation Form and send to the Senior SHEQ Officer and SHEQ Manager.

  • All High Potential Incidents must also be investigated by completing the rest of the Incident Report and Investigation Form.

All other incidents to be reported to the relevant supervisor, safety officer or safety & health representative as soon as possible. Page one of the Incident Report and Investigation Form to be completed.


OHS Representative Involvement: -

  • The OHS Representative for a designated workplace shall inspect the workplace immediately following an incident.

  • An OHS Representative shall form part of the investigation team.

What to do when reporting an Incident

All injuries or illnesses to workers (i.e., employees, visitor, etc.) sustained while performing work or visits, regardless of how minor the injury or illness seems, shall be:

  • Reported to the client / client representative.

  • Reported to site management.

  • Report to the SHEQ department.

  • Report to the Department of Labour. (see point i below)


The following incidents shall be reported to the CEO or Managing Director within seven days by the Senior SHEQ Officer:

  • Each incident occurring at work or arising out of or in connection with the activities of persons at work, or in connection with the use of plant or machinery, in which, or in consequence of which any person dies, becomes unconscious, suffers the loss of a limb or part of a limb or is otherwise injured or becomes ill to such a degree that he is likely either to die or to suffer a permanent physical defect or likely to be unable for a period of at least 14 days either to work or to continue with the activity for which he was employed or is usually employed.

A major incident occurred or the health or safety of any person was endangered and where-

In the event of an incident in which a person died, or was injured to such an extent that he is likely to die, or suffered the loss of a limb or part of a limb, no person shall without the consent of an inspector disturb the site at which the incident occurred or remove any article or substance involved in the incident therefrom: Provided that such action may be taken as is necessary to prevent a further incident, to remove the injured or dead, or to rescue persons from danger.


What must happen after the Incident or Accident happened?

  • Irrespective whether an injury, damage to property, environmental or quality incident are being investigated, this procedure and relevant forms are applicable.

  • The workplace manager where an injury occurred shall ensure the incident is investigated.

  • Every investigation shall be recorded.

A team to investigate the injury shall be according to form the incident investigation team may include the following participants:

  • Workplace manager. (Team Leader)

  • Persons involved in the incident and witnesses.

  • Health and Safety Representative. (compulsory)

  • Safety Officer or Senior SHEQ Officer.

The investigation team shall establish the facts of circumstances leading up to the incident, during the incident and post-incident by gathering and considering information including: -

  • Identified hazards.

  • Effectiveness of the existing risk assessments.

  • Effective of the existing risk controls.

  • Identified corrective actions, opportunities for preventive actions and continual improvement.

  • Evidence from the site from inspections and observations, photos and sketches.

  • Discussions with persons involved (or those aware of possible contributing factors) and statements from witnesses.

  • Materials, equipment chemicals and substances involved.

  • Exact location and environmental conditions including lighting, weather, ventilation, floor conditions.

  • Exact time, date and other time factors, e.g. Shift changes, rest breaks, task duration, work time frames and deadlines.

  • Unusual sequence of events and actual sequence of events, before, during and after the incident.

The Incident Investigation team shall recommend corrective and preventive actions to eliminate or reduce the risk of recurrence of a similar incident so far as is reasonably practicable.

  • The Workplace Manager shall act as the incident investigation team leader.

  • Injuries shall be investigated immediately if possible but not later than the first working day after the occurrence.

  • Every recommended preventive and corrective action shall be examined through a risk assessment BEFORE implementation.

  • Once accepted, every corrective and preventive action shall be recorded in the NCR Register

  • The workplace manager shall ensure that the corrective and preventive actions are implemented or escalated to a person responsible for the implementation of the actions.

  • Once the Incident Investigation Form has been completed thoroughly, signed by all the relevant persons and discussed with the relevant safety committee, the form shall be filed for at least three years.

Article by William van Greunen - OHS Consultant

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