Having a Near Miss is almost a daily occurrence for most businesses. From moving out of the way from an opening door, to dodging a falling item, Near Misses are very common and come in all shapes and sizes. Reporting them, however, is not. Reporting near misses is just as important as keeping a log of all injuries that occur at work, as not identifying a reoccurring trend in near misses could lead to a fatal accident. Identifying near misses and the trend can reduce risk, and prevent accidents from occurring.
As straightforward as the question sounds, a ‘near miss’ is not a clear cut definition.
A near miss in the workplace can involve narrowly being hit by an object, a piece of machinery you are using malfunctioning and almost injuring you, or a vehicle such as a forklift truck veering out of control and colliding into another object, but not causing any injuries.
Something as simple as an item falling due to improper storage can be counted as a near miss, as it would just has easily have been recorded as an accident if it had hit someone on its way down.
Regulations regarding a Near Miss Near miss reporting falls under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 (RIDDOR).
Identifying and investigating near-misses are key elements to finding and controlling risks before workers are injured and property is damaged.
It is important that every near miss occurrence is recorded as accurately and as near the time of occurrence as possible.
Ensure that, once a near miss has occurred, that you let the appropriate manager know as soon as possible.
Ensure that the near miss has been reported into an appropriate logbook or form.
If there is not a form or logbook available for a near-miss incident, there is an example form on the hse.gov.uk website which is ready to use once downloaded.
Sometimes a near miss is unavoidable.
There will come a time when a near miss occurs, either to you or to someone you know at work.
The trick is to identify what you can do to reduce that occurrence.
There are a number of steps that you the employee can take in order to ensure that less of these near misses occur.
Always look out for objects that look incorrectly stored or other hazards that look dangerous to you.
Inform your manager of the concern you have.
Remember, no matter what others say, ensuring that fellow employees are storing items and equipment securely and safely could avoid an injury to one of them, or worse.
If there is something that you have seen that you feel needs to be improved to reduce the risk of accidents and near misses, then do not hesitate to tell you manager about it.
After all, they want to reduce accidents and near misses as much as you do!
Inform others of repeated near misses:-
If you notice that near misses or accidents are occurring in the same area or because of the same circumstance, it is important for you to inform your manager, who may or may not be aware of it.
Regardless, informing the appropriate manager of these repeated occurrences could reduce or avoid an accident happening, that could injure another employee or even yourself!
Don’t take the risk. Let someone know!
It may not be part of your official job description,but everyone has a level of responsibility to each others health and safety within the workplace.
Think sensibly, report any incidents and near-misses quickly, and discuss with your manager any worries or improvements that you may have in order to improve the safety of you and your colleagues in the workplace. Stay Safe!