All accidents that happen at work should be recorded- this should include minor injuries and near misses.
The Social Security (Claims and Payments) Regulations 1979 require that every owner or occupier of premises to which any of the provisions of the Factories Act 1961 apply, and every other employer with 10 or more employees, must keep an accident book in an approved format. However, if you employ fewer than 10 people at the same time, it is recommended that you provide an accident book for the recording of work accidents.
The accident book is a useful record for the company and the member of staff as it provides detailed information on what happened. This may be required should a compensation claim be pursued.
Recording of accidents including near misses also helps the employer to take actions to stop accidents in future.
Employers have a legal obligation to report certain accidents and incidents under RIDDOR, therefore, keeping an accident book for all events helps to maintain this obligation
Key information on recording an accident in the accident book:
- An accident record should be completed for every injury, accident that occurs in the workplace.
- The completed record should be detached from the book, passed to the nominated person and stored securely. The details of the nominated member of the staff can usually be found on the front cover of the accident book.
- All personal information must be kept confidential and accident records stored securely.
- The cause of all accidents recorded must be investigated.
- After the last record has been completed, the book cover should be kept in a safe place, so that the accident records can be matched to the stubs.
- A nominated member of the staff must be responsible for the safekeeping of a completed accident book.
- Each accident record, and each set of book covers should be kept for minimum of three years.