- In 2012/2013 there were 646,000 accidents in the workplace with just over 1/3 of these resulting in more than 3 days off. 175,000 of these accidents resulted in more than 7 days off work
- Just over half were reported as part of RIDDOR (Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations)
- 19,707 major injuries were reported – 11% down on 2011/2012
- 148 workers died at work in 2012 / 2013
It is an employers responsibility to ensure that their employees working environment follows health and safety guidelines to ensure a reduced risk of harm in the workplace.
It is also the employers’ responsibility to ensure that sick pay is paid and staff cover organised where appropriate.
A full risk assessment of the working environment should be carried out to ensure the safety of all employees and visitors to the company. This includes appointing someone as fire marshall and or first aider. It is up to the employers’ discretion as to whether this extra responsibility warrants a pay increase.
The Accident Book
Every company should have an accident book where any incident (minor or major) are recorded.
It serves as a benefit to both the employees and the employer in different ways:
- The employee has a record of the incident in case he or she requires time off or sick pay. It also helps as an aid when coming to claim work accident compensation.
- The employer can monitor the accident book to see if there are any patterns occurring where people are injuring themselves. He or she can then use this information to make changes to the working environment to try and eliminate or reduce these occurrences’.
Only very small companies tend not to have an accident book – all others should, so make sure it is highlighted if there is not one present.
Following on from this, it is a legal requirement that all major incidents are reported to the local council under RIDDOR (See link above). This includes any broken bones, deaths, dangerous incidents, or any other incident that results in an employee taking more than 3 days off work.
Employees involved in incidents are usually entitled to statutory sick pay but employers can sometimes offer to pay more for time off caused by an accident in work – either through a scheme or as an addendum to your pay.
Can I claim for an accident in work?
If the accident was not your fault and was within the last 3 years then there is a high probability that you can make a claim.
Your employer is legally required to have insurance for this sort of thing – it is natural that these things happen when employees spend such a large proportion of their day in work premises so you should not feel bad claiming for the suffering you have endured.
You can typically claim on a ‘No Win No fee’ basis so there is very little risk involved in the process.
If you have been in an accident
- Record a full account of the accident in the book (take a photocopy for yourself)
- Take photos of the area in which the incident happened
- Check with your local council to make sure the accident has been reported as part of RIDDOR (if appropriate).
- Check through your employment contract to see your sick pay entitlement.
- Get in touch with a solicitors