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Incident, Accident, and Near Miss Reporting Details

Incident reporting forms should be completed in accordance with your institutional policy for all work-related injuries, illnesses, allergies, exposures, spills, and near misses.  Do employees at your facility know how to properly complete the details of your incident report?

The basic information required on an incident report such as date, personnel involved, and room number are very straight forward and take no time at all to complete.  Employees should be reminded that the rest of the information requested is necessary to fully understand why the situation occurred.  This information is then used to develop and implement corrective actions to prevent reoccurrence of the incident.  Taking the time to provide details could save someone else from experiencing the incident that they went through.

The description of what happened should be detailed enough that someone reading the incident report could visualize what happened.  This requires both general information, such as materials involved, equipment and engineering controls being utilized and personal protective equipment being worn, as well as specific details like volume of materials involved and a description of the manipulations being conducted when the incident occurred.   An explanation of why the incident occurred and recommendations for how the incident can be avoided in the future should be described in detail as well.  Suggestions for specific remedial measures to implement such as changes to work practices, additional personal protective equipment, engineering controls, increased containment, or modifications to spill procedures should be included.

Incident reports should be completed by stating the facts only, and leaving opinion and emotion out.  The more detail provided on the incident report, the better equipped the personnel reviewing the incident reports will be to develop and implement measures to prevent reoccurrence.

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