When is a staff incident notifiable?

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Reporting of workplace hazards and incidents are an important part of ensuring safety in the workplace and it is a requirement by law to take reasonable care or yourself and your work colleagues.

What is a Workplace incident?

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‚Äôs 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 be reported to SafeWork SA 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 Notiable 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 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.

You may notify SafeWork SA in writing by email by clicking here or fax (8204 9200) using the Notifiable Incident Report Form, which you can access by clicking here or the Online Notifiable Incident Report Form, which you can access by clicking here.

Where a workplace incident or injury 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.


SafeWork SA undertakes an investigation of all reported fatalities within or related to a workplace to establish if they are within the scope of the Work Health and Safety Act 2012 (SA) that we administer. They will investigate the cause of each workplace fatality by obtaining sufficient information to classify the death as either a notifiable fatality, a non-notifiable fatality (e.g. a death that is not work-related), or a non-jurisdictional fatality (e.g. a road traffic death travelling between home and work).

Serious injuries or illnesses

  • 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
  • medical treatment within 48 hours of exposure to a substance.

The MTA works with a number employers and workers to manage their WHS systems. If you need any assistance in WHS matters please contact Cos Lamberto at MTA by clicking here.