RIDDOR stands for the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013.
Under RIDDOR, employers, self-employed people and anyone who’s in control of a business’ premises are legally required to report specified workplace incidents, which include acts of violence to people who are at work.
RIDDOR reports are only necessary for reportable accidents that are work-related – you don’t need to inform enforcing authorities of every accident.
There are seven different categories of RIDDOR, and these are:
- Specified injuries;
- Over seven day injuries;
- Injuries to people not at work;
- Some work-related diseases;
- Dangerous occurrences and;
- Gas incidents.
All deaths that arise from a work activity or are connected with work – whether or not they involve someone who’s actually at work – must be reported.
Below are some examples of reportable accidents, incidents and diseases that must be reported under RIDDOR.
- Any bone fracture that’s been diagnosed by a registered medical practitioner;
- Arm, hand, finger, thumb, leg, foot or toe amputation;
- Reduction or loss of sight in one or both eyes;
- Crushing of the head or torso that results in brain or internal organ damage;
- Burns or scalds that cover more than 10% of the body, or causes serious damage to the individual’s eyes, respiratory system or any other vital organs;
- Any type of scalping that results in hospital treatment;
- Head injuries or asphyxia that causes loss of consciousness;
- Injuries incurred while working in an enclosed space that result in: hypothermia or heat-induced illness, or resuscitation or hospital admittance for more than 24 hours.
In all instances, a responsible person should follow the reporting procedure.
Over seven day injuries
These are injuries to workers that aren’t specified injuries, but are the result of an accident at work.
If the individual – whether they’re an employee or self-employed – is away from work or unable to perform their normal work duties for more than seven consecutive days as a result of the injury, then it should be reported.
This seven day period doesn’t include the day of the accident, but does include weekends and rest days. The report must be lodged within 15 days of the incident.
Over three day incapacitation
Accidents that result in a worker being incapacitated for more than three consecutive days must be recorded, but not reported.
If you’re an employer – under the Social Security (Claims and Payment) Regulations 1979 – you must keep an accident book that keeps accurate records in-line with the legislation.
Non-fatal accidents to non-workers
Accidents to members of the public or people who aren’t at work must be reported if it results in an injury that causes them to go to hospital for treatment directly from the scene of the accident.
The accident must be the result of a fault or failure on behalf of the workplace.
If an occupational disease is likely to have been directly caused or made worse by an individual’s place of work, the diagnosis must be reported. The diseases that need to be reported include:
- Carpal tunnel syndrome – Where the person’s work involves regular use of percussive or vibrating tools.
- Cramp of the hand or forearm – Where the person’s work involves prolonged periods of repetitive movement.
- Occupational dermatitis – Where the person’s work involves significant or regular exposure to a known sanitizer or irritant.
- Hand-arm vibration syndrome – Where the person’s work involves percussive or vibrating tools, or holding materials subject percussive processes or processes causing vibration.
- Occupational asthma – Where the person’s work involves significant or regular exposure to a known respiratory sanitizer.
- Tendonitis or tenosynovitis of the hand or forearm – Where the person’s work is physically demanding and involves frequent, repetitive movements.
- Any type of occupational cancer – Where there is an established causal link between the type of cancer diagnosed and the hazards to which the person has been exposed through work, e.g. mesothelioma or lung cancer where the person works with asbestos.
- Any type of disease that can be linked back to an occupational exposure to a biological agent – anthrax, legionellosis or bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), for example.
These are incidents that have the potential to cause injury or ill health. In total, there are 27 dangerous occurrences that will apply to most workplaces. Some of the most common ones include:
- Collapse, overturning or failure of load-bearing parts on lifts or lifting equipment;
- Electrical short circuit or overload that causes a fire or explosion;
- An explosion or fire that causes normal work to halt for more than 24 hours;
- Any unintentional release or escape of any substance that could cause personal injury, e.g. asbestos.;
- Flammable gas incidents and dangerous gas fittings.
For the incident to be reportable, in particular, you’d need to lookout for the following:
- An accidental leakage of gas
- Inadequate combustion of gas
- Inadequate removal of products of the combustion of gas.
Who should make the RIDDOR report?
Reports under RIDDOR should be made by responsible persons, including employers, the self-employed or the person in control of the premises.
How do you make a RIDDOR report?
You can submit a RIDDOR report online by heading over to the HSE and selecting the most suitable form. There are seven report options to choose form: injury; dangerous occurrence; injury offshore; case of disease; flammable gas incident; or dangerous gas fitting.
There is a phone number too – 0345 300 9923, however, this is only for fatal, specified and major incidents.
What happens if you don’t report an accident under RIDDOR?
If you have had an accident that meets the above criteria for reporting to the HSE under RIDDOR you MUST report it. You run the risk of being taken to court by the HSE or local authority. It’s not enough to simply plead ignorant to legislation or the need to report the accident, you must be able to prove you’ve got sufficient systems in place, that allow you to find out about RIDDOR-reportable incidents in a timely manner.
You must also be able to prove that you’ve put steps in place to prevent a similar accident from happening again in the future.
If you need help with anything RIDDOR-related, our industry-leading Health & Safety experts are here to help. Just get in touch or give us a call on 03300 43 91 43.
*If you’re based in Northern Ireland, you’ll be bound by the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 1997, which has several differences.