What is RIDDOR?

What is RIDDOR?

RIDDOR legislation legally requires employers, the self-employed and anyone in charge of premises to record and report specific injuries, illnesses and incidents.

It is an unfortunate truth that accidents happen in the workplace, even despite employers’ best efforts to minimise risks. However, by following the accident reporting regulations, employers can help to reduce the chance of the same accident happening twice.

For a comprehensive understanding and mastery of working safely or managing safely, you may wish to take our IOSH approved training courses:

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What does RIDDOR stand for?

The acronym RIDDOR stands for the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013. As you would expect from the title, the Regulations identify reportable accidents, injuries and illness caused by workplace activities.

The Regulations dictate how to report an incident and the time frame for doing so. All employers are legally obligated to follow RIDDOR.

Why is it important to record and report accidents?

Aside from the legal obligation to record and report accidents and other occurrences, doing so helps the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) to identify occupational risks, sources of disease, where and how workplace risks arise, and whether they need to be investigated.

Internally, RIDDOR reporting can provide valuable data for management so that health and safety risks can be managed effectively. Information can be used to inform risk assessments, develop solutions to problematic risks and reduce costs from injuries and workplace absence.

What must be reported under RIDDOR?

RIDDOR reportable incidents include:

  • Work-related deaths.
  • Certain serious injuries (reportable injuries).
  • Diagnosed cases of industrial diseases.
  • Certain ‘dangerous occurrences’ (near-miss incidents).
  • Injuries to workers that result in incapacitation for more than seven consecutive days.
  • Injuries to non-workers that result in them being taken directly to hospital for treatment, or specified injuries to non-workers that occur on hospital premises.

Details of what reportable injuries are and what constitutes a near-miss incident can be found on the HSE website.

Specific information must be included in reports covering:

  • The date of the report.
  • The date, time and location of the incident.
  • Personal details (name, job title, etc.) of the person, or people, involved.
  • A description of the illness, injury or occurrence.

Reporting injuries, diseases and dangerous occurrences

The main purpose of the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 is to report and keep track of work-related incidents. Doing so can help to keep yourself and others safe at work, make sure that action is taken when required and prevent accidents from happening again.

These are the principles that underpin reporting and recording incidents.

When deciding if an incident was work-related and needs to be reported, you should consider if the accident was related to:

  • The way in which the work was carried out.
  • Machinery, plant, substances or equipment used to carry out the work.
  • The condition of the workplace where the incident occurred.

When do I need to report RIDDOR?

The Regulations describe the procedure for reporting and recording accidents, however, a report must be made to HSE within ten days of an incident. For injuries that result in incapacitation for seven days or longer, a report must be made within 15 days of the incident.

How to deal with incidents

It is recommended that all organisations have a structured process to deal with incidents. This helps to resolve and report incidents as quickly as possible, and to promote a health and safety culture throughout the workplace.

For example, a structured process could follow a route something like this:

  1. Resolve the incident - Provide treatment for injuries using basic first aid procedures on site.
  2. Pass on treatment to medical professionals - Ensure treatment of serious injuries, or ongoing treatment is taken on by medical professionals.
  3. Record the details of the incident - Records must also be stored for 3 years.
  4. Assess whether the incident requires RIDDOR reporting.
  5. Inform insurers if necessary.
  6. Decide whether anybody involved needs debriefing - Incidents can be shocking to witness or experience.
  7. Investigate the incident - Make sure that lessons are learned and any possible improvements identified.
  8. Update risk assessments - Apply what was learned from the investigation.

To learn more about RIDDOR legislation, our Workplace Health and Safety (Level 3) course helps master when, why and how to make a suitable report.

Consequences of not reporting RIDDOR

It is a legal requirement of the Regulations to report certain workplace incidents to the HSE. Failing to submit and record details of a report can lead to a fine, a possible custodial sentence, a claim against employers for accident at work compensation and a big impact on an employer’s reputation.

However, incidents are not always reported for a number of reasons. The most common reasons include people:

  • Not having enough time
  • Not knowing (or believing) it was their responsibility
  • Not knowing who to report incidents to
  • Being worried about getting in trouble.

Unfortunately, when incidents aren’t reported, the risk of accidents happening again is not reduced and similar incidents are likely to happen again. Promoting a positive health and safety culture and educating employees about responsibilities is likely to improve employee wellbeing, job satisfaction and productivity.