Text 'CLAIM' to
Accidents at work happen. They are inevitable. It is a reality of doing business. In fact accidents are a reality of life. No matter what efforts are made to minimise the chances of an accident happening, no matter the precautions put in place and however many talks on proper procedure and attention to detail, someone will make a small mistake, or a piece of equipment will fail and an accident will occur. Any proper business will be prepared for this. As an immediate precaution a business where a chance of accident is likely will have someone on staff trained in first aid, and there are very few places without a first aid kit. Sometimes accidents don’t have an impact or any obvious and immediate consequence. No matter how immaterial you think an accident is, it is still important to inform your manager or your employer about any and all accidents. Here is why.
First of all, it’s your manager’s job to deal with these types of accidents. No good manager will ever complain about someone telling them something went wrong. Managers deal with mishaps and things going awry every day in their job. Their big problem is when they do not know something went wrong. And that is the big reason to let someone know about an accident, so they have full information and put into place corrective action.
If a manager does not know an accident occurred, no matter how inconsequential the employee thinks the accident is, the manager cannot put in place procedures and safety measures to ensure this accident does not happen again. They cannot see if there is a flaw in training with staff, or if something has been forgotten. While the accident might seem irrelevant it could be the beginning or the starting point for something much more serious. If the smallest accident is reported then it can be investigated and it is possible that a much larger accident in the future can be prevented, possibly saving someone from serious injury.
Take for example a ladder falling over. Falls are one of the biggest causes of workplace industries worldwide. No-one touched the ladder, it was resting fine against a wall but for some reason it fell over. No-one was hurt, it didn’t fall near anyone, it just fell for whatever reason, maybe it knocked over something but without damage. The person dealing with the ladder might not realise something very important though: for them it was just a strange occurrence, but a manager might have had three or four other reports from different teams of these ladders falling over in other places. Telling the manager that the ladder fell over adds to their realisation that there may be a problem with these ladders. They were a new order of ladders and with all these reports the manager can investigate. When they investigate they realise that there something misaligned in the construction of the ladder. It is unnoticeable without looking very hard, but because the manager had complete information they know to look carefully. The manager knowing this realises that the ladders need to be sent back to the manufacturer and more importantly they have prevented the ladder from falling and injuring someone, or someone falling from the ladder. What looks like an isolated incident to you, not worthy of report could be another element in a series of incidents to a manger with more information.
It is important to report any accident, as even if there are no consequences you might have all the relevant information. To someone in charge it could be the beginnings of the failing of equipment and procedure. This information will allow the employer to correct a problem before it has serious consequences.