Suffering an injury at work is something that we all wish will never happen to us, but unfortunately not every accident can be prevented. According to the Health and Safety Executive’s recently released figures for 2020/21, there have been 1,525 reportable workplace injuries in the past year, 11 of which have been fatal.
If you do find yourself in this unexpected, worrying and distressing situation, remember these 10 top tips:
- Stay calm and try not to panic!
- Assess the situation and the area around you – in the immediate aftermath of an accident, the most important thing to do is to check for any injuries. If you have been hurt, scan the area to see what may have caused the injury and how the accident may have occurred BUT do not touch anything.
- Witnesses – check to see if any work colleagues witnessed the accident and can assist you; if not, call for help and bring the accident to your colleagues’ attention. If another employee did see the incident, make a note of their names and contact details as they may be required to provide a witness statement at a later stage.
- First aid- every workplace is legally required to have a first aid kit and a properly trained first aid officer. No matter how minor your injury appears at first, always seek immediate treatment.
- Report the accident – as well as making your colleagues aware of the accident, it is vital that you also report the matter to your manager. Not only do many staff handbooks oblige employees to report accidents, it is important to tell your manager to ensure there is a record of what happened.
- Record events in the accident report book – every employer is required to complete an accident report form for any workplace accident that occurs. No matter how reluctant your boss appears to be to do so, ensure that the accident is properly recorded.
- Take photographs – if you are in a position to do so, take photographs of the accident location before the area/hazard has been cleared. This will give you supporting, contemporaneous evidence of the accident.
- Seek medical treatment – visit your GP or the local hospital for appropriate medical treatment as an initial examination by a first aider will generally not be sufficient to assess the true extent of your injuries.
- Document your losses and expenses – a serious injury may mean a period of absence from work and subsequently a loss of earnings. It may also result in an increase in expenses due to restricted daily activities and healthcare costs so keep hold of all of your receipts!
- Seek legal advice from a solicitor regarding any potential personal injury claim.
If you have had an accident at work which has caused you an injury you may be entitled to claim for compensation. To find out more about how our specialist personal injury lawyers could help you, please email on [email protected].