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This article is for anyone who has been injured in an accident at work and wants to know whether or not their employer has properly reported and recorded the details. Specifically, whether or not the Health and Safety Executive should have been informed of under RIDDOR.
What is RIDDOR?
RIDDOR is a term relevant to accidents at work and stands for the ‘Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations’ 2013.
Administered by the Health and Safety Executive, RIDDOR obligates employers, the self-employed and organisations who manage or own premises to report accidents at work, serious injuries and specified incidents within the workplace.
There is no requirement for every accident, injury or incident in the workplace to be reported to RIDDOR as it only applies to the more serious ones, or where a person has been forced to be away from work for a set period of time.
Accidents or injuries that don’t have to be reported
Not all accidents at work or workplace injuries are RIDDOR reportable as there are criteria which have to be met regarding the nature and severity of the incident.
For example, injuries that lead to a worker having more than three consecutive days off must be recorded by the employer, but do not need to be reported. Employers must keep an accident book as a requirement of Social Security (Claims and Payments) Regulations 1979, and in these cases an accident book entry will be sufficient record.
There is also no need to make a RIDDOR report in cases where a worker is taken to hospital following an accident at work purely as a precaution.
Accidents or injuries that do have to be reported
Accidents must be reported to RIDDOR when a person is left unable to work (or perform their normal duties) for periods of seven consecutive days or more. The seven day period starts the day after an accident at work and does include weekends and rest days. In these cases, a RIDDOR report must be made within 15 days of the accident.
RIDDOR regulations require employers to report an accident or incident at work that leads to an employee sustaining an injury in the following circumstances:
- The death of any employee or self-employed person as a result of an accident at work must be reported to RIDDOR. This requirement is also relevant if the death occurred as a result of an act of physical violence to a worker.
- Bone fracture workplace injuries, other than to fingers, thumbs and toes.
- Accidents that lead to amputations of limbs as a result of the incident or subsequent surgery.
- Injury that to lead to loss of sight, whether permanent, temporary, full or partial.
- Crush injuries to the head or torso that cause damage to the brain or internal organs.
- Severe burn injuries (including scalding) that cover 10% or more of the body, that cause significant damage to the eyes, respiratory system or other vital organs.
- Injuries causing scalping requiring hospital treatment.
- Head injuries or asphyxia that result in a loss of consciousness.
- Hypothermia or heat induced illnesses arising from working in enclosed spaces.
- Any injury requiring resuscitation or admittance to hospital for more than 24 hours.
More information can be found on the Health & Safety executives website.
RIDDOR reporting for industrial diseases
For conditions commonly known as industrial diseases, including repetitive strain injuries, there can be a requirement to make a RIDDOR report where the condition was likely to have been caused or made worse by the work undertaken by that person.
In such cases, employers and self-employed workers have a responsibility to make a RIDDOR report for certain conditions, including:
Vibration White Finger or Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Tendonitis or Tenosynovitis of the hand or forearm
All occupational cancers
Diagnosed cramping of the hand or forearm
Any disease or illnesses linked to an occupational exposure to a biological agent
What to do if you’re injured in a RIDDOR reportable incident
Due to the requirements of the RIDDOR reporting process, anyone injured in an accident at work that leads to a RIDDOR report being made is likely to have been seriously hurt and unable to work for a time.
In such cases, if the accident was caused by employer negligence, a lack of training or other failure to properly manage the health and safety of employers in the workplace, you can claim compensation for your workplace injury.
Claiming compensation after suffering serious injuries in an accident at work is an important right and one that can bring many benefits to the injured person. It can offer both financial and medical assistance at a time when they are unlikely to be able to work, or will be trying to rebuild their lives after a lengthy period of recovery and loss of income.