Incidents that occur at the workplace are basically defined as an unplanned, undesired event that may cause death, Injury or Illness, property damage or a dangerous event.
- Under the law an incident is defined as:
- An incident resulting in someone’s death
- An incident causing a serious injury or illness
A dangerous incident that is the direct result of a work environment or work-related activity
Depending on the seriousness or severity of the incident, these may have to reported to SafeworkSA by us as it is a requirement to notify the regulator under some circumstances.
The only way the workplace can be made safer is to ensure all incidents and injuries are reported.
What is a Notifiable Incident?
South Australia's work health and safety laws require a Person Conducting a Business or Undertaking (PCBU) to notify SafeWork SA of certain serious injuries or illnesses, dangerous incidents or deaths that occur at work immediately after becoming aware that it has occurred. Incidents are notifiable if they meet certain criteria and they arise out of the conduct of a business or undertaking and may relate to anyone at a workplace: a worker, contractor or member of the public.
While anyone at a workplace can report a notifiable incident, PCBUs are legally obligated to do so. Failure to report a notifiable incident to SafeWork SA is an offence and penalties apply. Notification by the PCBU must be done as soon as practicable after having become aware of the incident and via the fastest means available. In most cases, this is by telephone.
SafeWork SA may request confirmation of incident details in writing within 48 hours of your telephone notification. Where a workplace incident has occurred, the PCBU must investigate it to establish all of the factors involved and determine the appropriate action/s to prevent a recurrence. By collecting incident information and analysing it within a risk management process to identify and control risks, everyone can learn from it and improve safety practice.
Serious injuries or illnesses that are notifiable:
A serious injury or illness of a person includes:
- immediate treatment as an in-patient in hospital for any duration, even if the stay is not overnight or longer
Immediate treatment for:
- amputation of any body part
- serious head, eye or burn injury
- degloving or scalping
- spinal injury
- loss of bodily function
- serious lacerations