Don’t force us to report accidents, says EEF

A
compulsory duty for employers to investigate workplace accidents will introduce
a new and unnecessary level of bureaucracy and fail to increase best practice,
according to the Engineering Employers’ Federation (EEF).

In
fact, the organisation fears that legislation will not only fail to promote
accident investigation but may even have a detrimental effect on the number of
accidents reported.

The
EEF is critical of compulsory duty and claims it would do little to increase
the already low number of accidents reported, currently at a
bout 43 per cent.

"As
many of our member companies already know
,
important lessons can be learnt from investigating accidents. However, I
believe that proposals for new regulations are unlikely to lead to improved
health and safety performance. They are more likely to promote a blame culture
," health and safety manager at the EEF
Garry Booton
said.

The
EEF is also worried that a legal requirement to investigate may lead to
employers taking a defensive stance so that all investigation reports will be
written by lawyers – and so become privileged information.

The
organisation, which has a membership of m
ore than 5,700 companies, is responding to the government consultation document,
Proposals for a new Duty to Investigate Accidents.

By
Ross Wigham

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