The Importance of Incident Reporting

As safety professionals, we educate others on taking safe measures and reporting incidents in a timely matter. Many people think of an incident as someone being hurt or becoming ill. At Faith Technologies and throughout the FTI organization, we stress the importance of safe reporting of all incidents, whether it be a minor first aid instance (sprain/strain) or serious injury (cuts, fractures, etc.). We also advocate reporting of damage to property, equipment or vehicles on a project. But why do we need to report these occurrences?

First, taking care of our team members is the ultimate reason. FTI’s number one core value is an uncompromised focus on keeping people safe. We need to ensure the involved employee receives the most timely and appropriate care needed for any type of injury. This may include on-site first aid, referral to an occupational health provider or more emergent transfer to a medical facility. Having immediate incident reporting also opens a discussion on what happened and whether the issue was corrected to prevent additional incidents. Without immediate reporting, ensuring care of the employee and preventing further incidents becomes much more difficult.

Timely incident reporting is also important for insurance claim management. If an employee does not realize that they need to immediately report an incident and it’s then reported at a later date, it could be difficult to prove the work relatedness of an injury, which can affect timely and adequate care to the individual.

Insurance premiums also affect a company’s Experience Modification Rate (EMR). The EMR is based on the company’s historical cost of injuries and future risk. This rate is compared to other companies within the same industry and could lower or raise insurance premiums based on the comparison, so having accurate and timely incident and insurance reporting are important.

To support timely incident reporting, it’s crucial that employees have an easy way to report incidents. Ensure that you have easily accessible reporting mechanisms, that procedures are communicated and understood and that reports include information to determine root cause analysis. By educating employees on the importance of reporting, you will gain better response times for incidents, quicker results during the root cause analysis and build a strong safety culture.