RIDDOR made simple
What is RIDDOR and what do I need to do to comply?
RIDDOR – it’s a scary beast isn’t it? At 32 pages long, the Regulations are enough to strike fear in anyone’s heart!
So, I’ll start as I mean to go on and keep this simple by answering just 2 questions that you’ll need to understand RIDDOR.
1) What is RIDDOR?
2) What do I need to do?
Two questions is certainly less scary than a 32 page long document, so keep calm and carry on (reading this blog)…
1) WHAT IS RIDDOR?
RIDDOR is the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013.
The law came into force on 1st October 2013 replacing RIDDOR 1995 (as amended).
It legally requires employers and other people in control of work premises (known as the ‘responsible person’) to report to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and keep records of the following:
- work related fatalities
- work related accidents causing certain serious injuries (known as reportable injuries)
- certain work related diagnosed occupational diseases
- certain dangerous occurrences (known as near misses)
- gas incidents.
2) WHAT DO I NEED TO DO?
This section will cover what must be reported, how to report it and the requirements for keeping records.
Accidents causing death or serious injury
An accident is defined as a separate, identifiable, unintended incident which causes physical injury. It also includes acts of violence to workers. However, not all accidents are required to be reported under RIDDOR. The accident must be work related and cause a ‘reportable injury’.
Types of reportable injury:
- Death – All deaths resulting from work related accidents to workers and non-workers must be reported. Suicides are exempt.
- Over 7 day injuries to workers – Where a worker is off work or can’t carry out their normal work duties for over 7 consecutive days following an accident (not including the day the accident occurred).
- Injuries to non-workers – Work related accidents resulting in injury to non-workers i.e. members of the public or visitors, must be reported if they’re taken from the accident scene to be treated for that injury in hospital. You don’t need to report what hospital treatment was given. Accidents where a person is taken to hospital as a precaution, but where no injury is apparent, don’t have to be reported.
- List of specified injuries to workers:
- fractures (except fingers, thumbs and toes);
- amputation of an arm, hand, finger, thumb, leg, foot or toe;
- permanent loss of sight or a reduction of sight;
- crush injuries resulting in internal organ damage;
- serious burns (over more than 10% of the body, or damaging the eyes, respiratory system or other vital organs);
- scalpings (separation of skin from the head) which need hospital treatment;
- unconsciousness caused by a head injury or asphyxia;
- any other injury caused by working in enclosed spaces, leading to hypothermia, heat-induced illness, resuscitation or admittance to hospital for more than 24 hours.
The following list of (diagnosed) occupational diseases, which are likely to have been caused or made worse by work, must be reported:
- 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/near misses
These are specified ‘near miss’ events which have the potential to cause harm. Not all near misses need to be reported, a full list is available in Schedule 2 to the RIDDOR 2013 Regulations.
Common near misses include the collapse, overturning or failure of load-bearing parts of lifts and lifting equipment, plant or equipment coming into contact with overhead power lines, and explosions or fires resulting in work being stopped for over 24 hours.
If you’re a distributor, filler, importer or supplier of flammable gas who learns (directly or indirectly) that a person has died, lost consciousness or been admitted to hospital from gas which you have either distributed, filled, imported or supplied, you must report this online.
Gas engineers that are registered with the Gas Safe Register must report details of any gas appliances or fittings which you think could be dangerous and result in gas leaks, inadequate combustion or inadequate removal of products of the combustion of gas. The danger may be from the way the appliance or fitting is designed, constructed, installed, modified or serviced.
Here’s some other information that might be of use.
WHAT YOU DON’T NEED TO REPORT UNDER RIDDOR.
- Road traffic accidents, except if the accident involved:
- loading/unloading a vehicle
- work on the side of the road i.e. construction or maintenance works
- a substance being carried by the vehicle which escaped
- a train.
- Medical or dental treatment or examinations.
- Duties carried out by the armed forces whilst on duty.
HOW TO REPORT AN INCIDENT UNDER RIDDOR
- Online – Complete the online form (view this advice on how to fill in the online report) which is sent directly to the RIDDOR database. You‘ll be sent a copy for your own records.
- Phone – For fatal and specified injuries only, the Incident Contact Centre is open Mon-Fri 8.30 am – 5 pm on 0845 300 9923.
- Out of hours reporting – For serious incidents such as a work related death, serious incidents involving multiple casualties or serious incidents causing major disruption e.g. evacuation, road closures, large numbers of people going to hospital, you can call the HSE’s Duty Officer on 0151 922 9235.
RECORDING INCIDENTS – WHAT YOU NEED TO DO
Recording incidents under RIDDOR is something you must do yourself in e.g. an accident book and it’s an important and useful tool to manage health and safety effectively in your business. That’s because knowing about past incidents can help you prevent future ones from happening. Take the accident book as an example – keeping a record of incidents in here can help you carry out risk assessments for future activities.
Under RIDDOR, you must keep a record of:
- Accidents, occupational diseases or dangerous occurrences (near misses) which must be reported under RIDDOR; and
- Other occupational accidents resulting in injuries where a worker is absent from work or is incapacitated for more than 3 consecutive days. This doesn’t include the day of the accident but does include any weekends or other rest days. Note – injuries that incapacitate a worker for over 7 days must be reported as well as recorded.
You must produce RIDDOR records when requested by the HSE, a local authority or the Office for Rail Regulation Inspectors.
And there you have it – to understand RIDDOR you just have to know what needs recording and reporting and what doesn’t. We’ve calmed the beast, so smile with relief and keep this guide to hand.
Health and Safety Executive RIDDOR website