An incident (or accident) reporting system is important for small businesses to have in place no matter your industry. However, some types of businesses are more susceptible to unusual events or injuries occurring, especially those that treat clients (doctors or physiotherapists for example). Nevertheless, any business that has a physical premise could experience an incident where someone can get hurt on their property.
The primary purpose of an incident/accident reporting system is to document, through the completion of a form, the specific details surrounding an incident/accident while it is still fresh in everyone’s mind. If the individual injured is a patient, a staff member or a visitor, a report should be filled out regardless. The information contained in the report might be useful down the road in the event of a lawsuit or liability issues associated with the event. Say for example, one of your customers slips and injures themselves while at your business. One year later they could decide to sue you for their injuries and it will be a lot harder to remember the exact details of the incident if you have no documentation.
A reporting form should be made readily available to all staff and they should be encouraged to fill it out as soon as possible, usually right after the injured person is looked after so that attempts of remedying the situation may be documented as well. The completed form should be kept on file for as long as possible. Recommended items the form should contain include:
• Date and time of the incident;
• Injured person’s name, address, date of birth and any other relevant information;
• A description of the incident and any resulting or possible injuries;
• A description of any treatment given to the person on the scene (i.e. first aid) and details on whether they sought further treatment (i.e.: hospital or physician visit);
• Name, contact information and brief statement from any witnesses to the incident;
• Any other details of the incident that the person completing the form deems important;
• Name and signature of the person completing the form, including the date they completed it.
If you have any questions regarding the information above or if you would like to discuss your current policy with a broker, our Bullfrog Insurance brokers would be happy to help you out.