Emergency Preparedness

Quick Reference Guide Accident Investigation

This quick reference guide is information for Supervisors and Managers to use while investigating work related injuries and illnesses. Remember that prior to investigating an accident, employees should be trained to report injuries to Supervision, no matter how minor it may be. Near-accidents should also be reported and investigated by Supervision. Please follow these 4 easy steps when investigating work related injuries:

Step 1:

A. Act at once. Talk with the injured employee immediately if possible. (one on one is best). Use fact-finding, not fault-finding questions to determine what occurred. Ask the injured person or a witness to show you how the accident happened. Use the Accident Investigation Checklist (attached) for a list of sample questions that you may need to ask during an investigation.

B. Review physical causes, such as poor housekeeping, improper guards, improper apparel (such as a lack of properly soled shoes or safety shoes, eye, hand, or head protection), defective equipment, slippery floors, or other working conditions. Completely describe location of incident; including lighting, walking surface, weather, measurements, and any other condition that could have contributed to or prevented the incident.

C. Review personal causes, such as dangerous practices, inability, inexperience, poor judgement, and disobeying rules.

D. Trace down each item of information to find every contributory cause. Decide the necessary preventive measures to prevent similar accidents in the future. Report any defective equipment to the person responsible.

E. Non-injury accidents (an accident that nearly caused an injury of any severity) should also be investigated.

Step 2:

Complete a Supervisor Accident Investigation Reporting form within 24 hours. Describe how the incident occurred; state facts, contributing factors, cite witnesses, and support evidence. Keep a copy for your records and send original to the appropriate District department.

Step 3:

Provide injured employee with an Employees Claim for Workers Compensation Benefits form before or after treatment or as he or she is able.

Step 4:

Follow-up with employee after he or she receives treatment to find out if they are doing well. In addition, ensure contributing factors to the accident, if any, are fixed (work orders sent), and all exposed employees are aware of the contributing causes of the accident