Investigating Accidents

The United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration(OSHA)considers successful accident investigation to be directly related to accident prevention.

Investigating accidents and near misses is important because it:

  • Identifies the cause of the accident.

  • Identifies corrective action that needs to be taken.

  • Prevents similar types of accidents in the future.

Remember, the purpose of an accident investigation is not to place blame, but to improve safety conditions for everyone. That?s why employees and associations should cooperate fully with accident investigations. This way safety can be improved and contract protections guaranteed.

Every employee has three key roles to play in accident investigation procedures:

  1. Invoke your contractual rights and association protections from the start of the investigation.
  2. Always report any accident or near miss immediately so that management can look into it and make needed corrections. Be sure to alert the association so that it can monitor the investigation and the results of the investigation.
  3. Cooperate with all investigations of any accident in which you are involved, that you have witnessed, or where your first hand knowledge of situation or procedure could be helpful.