Brian Brookes, BHIB Risk Manager offers advice on what to do in the event of serious injury to an employee.
Call for an ambulance
Make sure that the first aider has called the emergency services
Secure the site
Make sure that the site is cordoned off. Take photographs of the site of the incident or a video recording. Ascertain whether there were any witnesses and arrange for statements to be taken from them. If equipment was involved ensure that that equipment is secured and not disposed of.
If the incident is reportable to the HSE telephone them with full details of the incident so that they can decide whether they wish to attend the site.
Inform the next of kin of the incident and advise them where the injured party has been taken. Offer to take them to the hospital if required. In view of social media speeding up the relay of information this is now particularly important that contact is made as soon as possible.
Inform your insurers of the incident whether you think a claim will be forthcoming or not. All policies have a notification period clause in them which requires you to advise your insurers of serious incidents. They may also carry out an investigation which should be done as early as possible whilst the incident is still fresh in people’s memories.
If you have a personal accident policy which covers your employees you will also need to inform them of the incident.
In the event of a serious injury or death to an employee it may be worth considering reporting the matter to your legal advisors in case the Police or HSE wish to interview you if they consider that you may be in breach of any Health & Safety legislation.
Make sure that counselling is offered to anyone who may have witnessed, or been effected, by the event.
Post Loss Investigation
Make sure that a post-loss investigation is carried out by your competent Health & Safety person to learn any possible lessons from the event and to ensure that it doesn’t happen again in the future. Remember that this report will be disclosable to the employees solicitors should the employee subsequently make a claim against your company. However, if the investigation recommends certain measures are put in place do not hesitate to make those changes.
Consider sending flowers or chocolates to the employee whilst he/she is convalescing. This is not an admission of guilt but an admission that you care.
Need To Ask A Question?
As always you can speak to your usual BHIB point of contact, alternatively, speak to Brian directly on (0116) 2819134 or email firstname.lastname@example.org