What type of accident book should I use and where can I get one? 

The Accident Book is an essential document for employers and employees, who are required by law to record and report details of specified work-related injuries and incidents. It enables businesses to comply with legal requirements under social security and health and safety legislation, including Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR) requirements.  The accident book can be purchased via the HSE website and whichever type you decide to use it should have perforated edges along each page to allow the completed report to be removed and stored safely (after review and investigation) to comply with GDPR.

How should an illness such as an asthma attack or someone fainting be reported?

There is no reason why these types of incidents cannot be entered into the accident book however they should not be categorised as accidents when collating statistics.  An alternative option is to use an incident report form which covers other scenarios.

Where is the best location for a defibrillator at work?

Identify where the largest group of people operate on site and most importantly make it visible.  If someone shouts “Where’s the AED!?” You’ll want to be able to respond with a quick, clear direction such as “In reception!” or “By the stairs!”  It should be easy to reach and remove.  Those using the equipment should be trained and the defibrillator should be maintained as per the manufacturer's instructions. 

An employee has had an accident at work and is now off sick - is this reportable?

Certain incidents are legally required to be reported under RIDDOR (read more here) including over 7 day injuries.  This means that if someone is absent as a result of an accident and the absence lasts more than 7 days it must be reported to the HSE Incident Contact Centre.  If the absence relating to the accident does not occur immediately afterwards then this must still be reported if it results in more than 7 days from the day the absence started.  Any weekend/rest days must be included in the 7 day period.

How long should the accident book be kept on file?

Completed accident records must be stored safely and securely in accordance with GDPR.  Records should be kept for at least 3 years which is the timeframe an individual can raise a personal injury claim.  In this instance insurance companies will request copies of accident records including any RIDDOR reports and investigations.

Can antihistamines and pain relieft be stored in a first aid box?

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) recommend that tablets and medicines should not be kept in first aid boxes in the workplace.  First aid at work does not include giving tablets or medicines to treat illness.  The only exception to this is where aspirin is used when giving first aid to a casualty with a suspected heart attack, in accordance with currently accepted first-aid practice.  

Some employees may carry their own medication that has been prescribed by a doctor (eg an inhaler for asthma).  If an individual needs to take their own prescribed medication, the first aider’s role is generally limited to providing assistance and contacting the emergency services as appropriate.  However, this does not apply to the administration of prescription only medication for the purpose of saving life in an emergency, for example administering adrenaline for intramuscular use in anaphylaxis.  Where there may be a need for first aiders to provide this assistance additional training will be provided.

Is a first aid room a legal requirement?

A suitable room on the premises (usually necessary in larger buildings) which is easily accessible should be identified as an effective place for administering first aid or a place to rest/recover/wait for further medical treatment.  Click here for the HSE requirements  

Can an employee train as a first aider and fire marshal?

Ideally employees should be assigned only one of these roles to prevent a conflict of priorities in the event of an emergency.