Accident Reporting

The Importance of Accident Reporting in the UK

In the United Kingdom, accident reporting is a crucial aspect of health and safety management in the workplace. Reporting accidents helps organisations identify hazards, implement control measures, and prevent similar incidents in the future. The reporting process is governed by the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 (RIDDOR).  In this blog, we’ll explore the significance of accident reporting in the UK, its key components, and the positive impact it can have on workplace safety.


Why Accident Reporting Matters: A Legal and Ethical Imperative

Accident reporting is more than a regulatory checkbox; it’s a legal and ethical imperative. In the UK, the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases, and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 (RIDDOR) mandates that certain workplace accidents, injuries, diseases, and near misses must be reported to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). This legal obligation serves multiple purposes:

1. Legal Compliance:

Reporting accidents is a legal requirement, and failure to comply with RIDDOR can result in legal consequences for employers. Fulfilling reporting obligations helps organizations avoid legal penalties and demonstrates a commitment to compliance.

2. Preventive Action:

Reporting accidents goes beyond compliance; it’s a proactive step toward preventing future incidents. Analysing the root causes of accidents provides valuable insights into areas that may require improved safety measures or additional training.

3. Employee Well-being:

Accurate reporting ensures that employees receive timely medical attention and support after an accident. It is a crucial step in prioritizing the well-being of the workforce and demonstrating a commitment to their health and safety.


What to Report


All deaths to workers and non-workers, with the exception of suicides, must be reported if they arise from a work-related accident, including an act of physical violence to a worker.

Specified injuries to workers (Regulation 4):

Report specified injuries:

  • fractures, other than to fingers, thumbs and toes
  • amputations
  • any injury likely to lead to permanent loss of sight or reduction in sight
  • any crush injury to the head or torso causing damage to the brain or internal organs
  • serious burns (including scalding) which:
    • covers more than 10% of the body
    • causes significant damage to the eyes, respiratory system or other vital organs
  • any scalping requiring hospital treatment
  • any loss of consciousness caused by head injury or asphyxia
  • any other injury arising from working in an enclosed space which:
    • leads to hypothermia or heat-induced illness
    • requires resuscitation or admittance to hospital for more than 24 hours
Over-7-Day Injuries:

Report injuries that lead to an employee’s absence from work for more than seven consecutive days.

Occupational Diseases:

Where certain occupation diseases have likely been caused or made worse by their work employers must report on:

  • carpal tunnel syndrome;
  • severe cramp of the hand or forearm;
  • occupational dermatitis;
  • hand-arm vibration syndrome;
  • occupational asthma;
  • tendonitis or tenosynovitis of the hand or forearm;
  • any occupational cancer;
  • any disease attributed to an occupational exposure to a biological agent.


Dangerous Occurrences

Certain specified near-miss events such as:

  • the collapse, overturning or failure of load-bearing parts of lifts and lifting equipment;
  • plant or equipment coming into contact with overhead power lines;
  • the accidental release of any substance which could cause injury to any person.


Gas Incidents:

Report any incidents where someone has died, lost consciousness, or been taken to hospital for treatment to an injury arising in connection with that gas.

Report any unsafe gas appliance and fittings.


Accident/incident Reporting Process


Immediate Reporting of Fatalities, Specified Injuries or Dangerous occurrences

Report these immediately by phone to the Incident Contact Centre of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) on 0345 300 9923 (opening hours Monday to Friday 8:30am to 5pm) or submit an online report within 10 days.

Over-7-Day Injuries,

Report these incidents within 15 days using the appropriate online form on the HSE website.

Over 3 day Injuries

Accidents must be logged in your accident book but not reported under RIDDOR.

Gas Incidents

Report of a Flammable Gas Incident – online form.

Report of a Dangerous Gas Fitting – online form.



Responsible for reporting incidents that occur to their employees and members of the public.

Self-employed individuals:

Must report incidents that occur on their own premises.

Persons in control of premises:

Report incidents that occur on their premises, even if they are not the employer.

Record Keeping

Keep Records:

Maintain records of all reportable incidents, including the date, nature of the incident, and the steps taken to address the situation.


Failure to Report:

Failing to report incidents under RIDDOR can result in legal consequences, including fines and prosecution.



Positive Impact on Workplace Safety: A Culture of Continuous Improvement

Accident reporting is not just about meeting legal requirements; it’s a catalyst for positive change. Organisations that prioritise thorough and honest reporting contribute to:

Preventing Recurrence:

Identifying the root causes of accidents enables organizations to implement targeted measures to prevent similar incidents in the future.

Enhanced Training:

Insights gained from incident reports can inform the development of more effective training programs, ensuring that employees are well-equipped to navigate potential hazards.

Cultivating a Safety Culture:

By encouraging open reporting and learning from incidents, organizations foster a culture where employees feel empowered to contribute to safety improvements without fear of reprisal.



Accident reporting under RIDDOR is a legal obligation designed to improve workplace safety. By promptly reporting incidents, organisations contribute to the overall goal of preventing accidents and protecting the well-being of workers and the public. It’s essential for employers and responsible individuals to be familiar with the specific reporting requirements and fulfil their obligations under RIDDOR.


A Safer Tomorrow Starts with Reporting Today


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