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When it comes to incidents, a common misconception is that you need to report incidents to HazardCo immediately. This is not the case. Reporting to HazardCo can often happen later once details of the incident have been established. The only time an incident should be reported immediately is when it is a notifiable incident to be reported to WorkSafe NZ. 

HazardCo assesses all incidents that get reported via the ‘Report an Incident’ function on the HazardCo App. If the incident is notifiable to WorkSafe NZ, we will contact you to determine further details and ensure that the appropriate steps have been taken. If you need assistance in determining what happened or appropriate corrective actions then call 0800 555 339 to speak to an advisor who will be able to assist you.

Reporting an incident on the HazardCo App

  1. Select or enter the site where the incident occurred 
  2. Select the date that the incident occurred 
  3. List the people that were involved in the incident
  4. Select the type of incident (near miss, injury, illness, incident, other)
  5. Select the treatment received (first aid, medical centre, hospital, unsure, none)
  6. Describe what happened: This is where you enter as much information as you can about the incident. What happened, how it happened, why it happened and any corrective actions that you have put in place to ensure that it does not happen again.

Below is an example of an incident report that could be improved upon and what good reporting looks like: 

Describe what happened

Geoff hurt his leg. 

Result:

The above report tells us nothing about Geoff’s injury, how he is, how it happened or what steps have been taken to prevent the incident from reoccurring. 

Good report – Describe what happened

Geoff hurt his leg while carrying timber around the warratahs by himself. The load he was carrying was awkward and the warratahs were uncapped. He dropped the timber and suffered a graze and some bruising to the back of his right leg and knee. Geoff was checked over by Bob, a first aider. A band-aid was applied to his graze, he rested for a few minutes concerned about his knee but no swelling appeared and he was able to return to work. We spoke to Geoff about carrying awkward loads and advised him that next time he should get someone to help him. We have a toolbox meeting scheduled with the team to talk about this incident and advise all workers about safe manual handling techniques and that waratahs should always be capped. 

Result:

The above report tells us everything that we need to know about the incident. It advises:

The incident wasn’t serious (but had the potential to be if he had fallen), it is clear what treatment he received and that steps have been taken to ensure that Geoff asks for help in the future and that the working environment remains safe. 

Of course, reach out to HazardCo and speak to one of our expert Health and Safety Advisors if you have any questions or need support for incidents or near misses on your site. You can contact us on 0800 555 339.

If an incident happens at work and your first thought is paperwork, you’re doing health and safety wrong. 

Reporting incidents and near misses is vital to good business, and that begins with a ‘safety differently’ approach. A prevention before cure attitude. One that sees incidents reported immediately and investigated thoroughly. 

Time and time again we see incidents happen and fingers pointed. What is absolutely vital for your business is a health and safety culture that is open, honest and educated. How do you nurture this culture? You need the right tools. 

Where to document and register all incidents

You don’t need to over complicate matters here. Incidents and near misses should be registered in one convenient place that is easy to manage and draw upon when needed.

The HazardCo App has been designed with just that in mind. Simply login, report who was involved, if medical treatment was required, and the details of what happened.  Visit the HazardCo Help Centre for assistance on Reporting an Incident.

All of this information is then stored as an incident register in your HazardCo Hub for you to easily access at any time. 

The Advisory team is available 24/7 for serious incidents, give us a call on 0800 555 339

What incidents should you report

You should report any health and safety incidents or near misses that happen at work. This could be an incident that affects you, your staff, or anyone on-site.

From minor to serious, everyone has the right to know of any threats relating to them in the workplace. Some serious incidents may need to be reported to the Regulator, WorkSafe. You can find out about What events need to be notified here. 

Those affected by the incident are also entitled to a fair and formal record of what happened, be sure to hold a toolbox talk/safety meeting with all relevant workers once the investigation is complete, you can complete this from the HazardCo App or download a Toolbox Talk from the Templates section of your Hub. .

Why you should be reporting incidents

Every single worker plays a part in protecting ourselves and one another in the workplace. By reporting incidents you are helping identify areas where you can work together to improve health and safety, and potentially save lives.

Learning from incidents

We understand that it’s unrealistic to expect no incidents. They can – and do – happen. What’s important is that when they do, workers take time to review and learn from them.

Depending on the complexity of the incident, learning from it might be as simple as meeting with the team afterwards to figure out what went wrong, and what can be done to stop it from happening again.

Complete an Incident Investigation Form to determine the cause of the incident and any corrective actions that you need to implement. 

Not your job?

Yes, it is. And that’s why we are so proud of what we do. The HazardCo App puts health and safety in everyone’s hands, so everyone is protecting their workforce and working safely.

By reporting and investigating an incident, you will find the cause, but you are also likely to identify other areas where improvements can be made. Investigations aren’t about blame and punishment, but learning and improving.

No workplace is perfect, and failure will likely occur at some point. Let your workers know this, and that blame is off the table. This is about making sure everyone is safe and able to get on with the job at hand.

 

We’re here to help. Reach out to our team if you have any questions or need health and safety advice.

0800 555 339 | info@hazardco.com

The construction industry is known for its potential hazards and risks, and unfortunately, incidents sometimes occur. Having an incident on-site can be alarming, but your response is crucial in reducing its impact and making sure the team is safer in the future.

Remember, if you’re a HazardCo member we will support you throughout this process, just give us a call. 

Incidents can range from very minor, to serious incidents. The steps below can be scaled up or down depending on the seriousness of the incident. If you have a near miss on-site, this is also considered an incident. Learn more about reporting near misses. 

Prioritise Health and Safety
The health and safety of the people involved in the incident should be the main concern. Immediately assess the situation to identify any ongoing dangers and take appropriate action to eliminate or minimise risks. Evacuate affected areas if necessary and provide medical assistance to injured personnel. Remember, health and safety should always come before anything else.

Secure the Scene
Once the immediate safety concerns are addressed, you may need to secure the scene to prevent further incidents or unauthorised access. Erect physical barriers, post warning signs and restrict entry if needed.

Communicate!
Maintaining clear and effective communication during and after an incident is really important.

Notify all the relevant people about the incident as soon as possible. This includes workers, supervisors, managers and contractors. 

Report the incident in the HazardCo App

Using the Report Incident feature on your HazardCo App, fill out the fields to capture what happened. Your reported incident will be added to your incident register in the Hub, and HazardCo retains this for as long as you’re a member.

Notifiable Incidents
It’s important to note that some incidents are required to be notified to WorkSafe. These are referred to as notifiable incidents. A notifiable incident is: 

In the event of a notifiable incident, you need to preserve the incident site until a WorkSafe inspector arrives or WorkSafe directs you otherwise. This doesn’t prevent you from helping an injured person or making the site safe. 

For more information on what to do when it comes to notifiable incidents, head over to the  WorkSafe website

Find out what happened and why, then complete an investigation report

Investigating the incident will help to find out exactly what happened and why.  We recommend talking to the people involved as well as any witnesses. For a serious incident, it’s best to speak to everyone individually. 

Document all your findings in a report, including photos and relevant data. In the report, you should look at immediate causes as well as bigger issues and potential improvements to prevent future incidents. HazardCo members can use the guided Investigation Report in the Hub to identify any shortcomings or gaps that may have contributed to the incident and implement corrective actions. This may involve improving training programs, modifying procedures, upgrading equipment, or implementing new safety technologies. 

Communicate some more!
Pass on what you have learnt to everyone involved. This is your opportunity to emphasise a culture of continuous improvement and learning to prevent similar incidents in the future. 

Encourage open communication and create a supportive environment that encourages workers to report near misses and potential hazards without fear of repercussions. 

Conclusion
When an incident occurs on a construction site, a swift and effective response is crucial to reduce risks and ensure the health and safety of your crew. Prioritising safety, establishing clear communication channels, securing the scene, communicating and investigating the incident can continuously improve the health and safety of everyone on-site. At the end of the day, these measures protect lives, as well as contribute to the long-term success of the project and your business.

Near Misses

According to WorkSafe NZ, a near miss is defined as an incident that occurs but doesn’t lead to injury, illness, or damage. 

No matter what working environment you are in, work sites nationwide have near misses every day. On-site, a near miss could be tripping over stacked material, it could be dropping the hammer off the scaffold onto the ground or backing the truck and narrowly missing the boss’s ute. While these seem fairly innocent, they could have been more serious. 

Like other incidents, these near misses need to be recorded and reported as soon as they occur. Once they have been, you can look into what caused the near-miss and put steps in place to avoid it turning into something more serious. 

Reporting near misses

Near misses should be considered the same as an incident. But often they aren’t. 

We often find that near misses are very rarely reported, and actually brushed off. Near misses are just as dangerous as actual incidents. If you’ve had a near miss, you might have got lucky but someone else might not. Treat near misses as a free learning tool to put controls in place to prevent more serious incidents from occurring.

By encouraging near miss reporting, you can start to see patterns and gain valuable insights on where to best focus resources into safety.

Reporting all near misses and incidents on-site, is all about helping to prevent harm. Everyone on-site has a right to know of potential threats that may impact them, and everyone plays a role in keeping everyone safe on-site. 

Getting everyone to report near misses and incidents creates a culture of open, honest discussions about health and safety.

Encourage reporting and recording

Best practice is that all incidents, whether they cause injury or not, need to be reported and added to your incident register. 

The more reporting you have, the more data is available for those in a position to influence change, as it can help them to see areas that require improvement or to see how effective implemented controls have been.

Encouraging the reporting of these incidents is simple with the HazardCo App:

No matter how big or small, report all near misses and incidents so you can all learn from them. Using the Report Incident feature on your HazardCo App, fill out the fields to capture what happened. Your reported incident will be added to your incident register in the Hub, and HazardCo retains this for as long as you’re a member.

Ensure you take incidents and near misses seriously and investigate them. Investigations help you work out the root cause so you can put corrective actions in place to prevent a recurrence. 

We all dread an incident occurring, but if anything serious happens on your site it’s important you are prepared, remain calm, and do the right thing. When in doubt, call HazardCo – we are here to support the health and safety needs of all HazardCo members 24/7. If you’d like to learn more about the App and the Reporting Incident tool take a look at our short demo videos

When risks and hazards are recognised early, controls can be put in place to prevent harm to workers, visitors, and the public. 

Reporting and controlling hazards/risks is a way of being proactive and helping create a safe environment for everyone to work in.

A key part of the Health & Safety at Work Act 2015 (HSWA) and regulations is the need to both identify these hazards, and then manage the risks involved so they are either removed or controlled correctly. Creating a Task in the HazardCo App to report the hazard is a simple and effective way to manage this responsibility.

There are always going to be hazards and risks on construction sites; they are dynamic places. Identifying the hazards that could cause serious injury or harm to both workers’ health and safety helps manage risk as the project moves along and helps those who manage the jobs plan for them better in the future. 

For example:

The concrete pumping truck has a blockage on-site, and the team decides to try and rectify the blockage whilst other workers are in close proximity. Joe is aware of the hazards and risks of clearing blockages under high pressure, and that someone could get seriously injured if things go wrong. He recommends that the concrete pumping team stop and do it away from other workers in a safe location. Because no incident or near miss occurred of anyone getting or nearly getting hurt, Joe logs this hazard as a Task in the HazardCo App.

The company reviews all the tasks that have been logged for the project and sees Joe’s reported hazard. With new knowledge of the dangers involved and the controls used to manage the risks of concrete truck blockages. The company decides to use those controls on all sites going forward. 

Hazard reporting is an effective and ongoing way for workers to raise concerns or suggest improvements on a day-to-day basis, whilst also helping PCBU’s meet the worker engagement and participation duty under the Act.

How hazards differ from near misses:

Hazard: something could occur. 

Near Miss: something did occur but there was no harm caused.

 

Hazard example:

Joe notices an extension cable has been badly damaged and is still plugged in. He turns off the power and removes the cable from services and logs it as a Task in the HazardCo App before someone could get hurt.

Reporting hazards as a Task in the HazardCo App helps with: 

Near miss example: 

Joe sees a fellow worker about to roll up a badly damaged extension cord whilst it is still plugged in, he immediately stops the worker before he could have got hurt. Turns off the power and removes the cable from service and logs a near miss as an Incident  in the HazardCo App.

Reporting a near miss helps with: 

To put it simply, health and safety regulators (WorkSafe) work with you and your workers to keep you safe and healthy. Their main goal is to ensure that New Zealand businesses are safe and healthy places to be. But be warned, not all visits are pre-arranged and inspectors are allowed to show up at any reasonable time, regardless of whether or not you’re there. So, what should you expect when they come a-knocking? 

Typically a visit from WorkSafe follows a four-step process: 

Step 1: Conversation

A friendly chat isn’t that scary, right? When the WorkSafe inspector first arrives, they’ll sit down with you and have a conversation. This discussion is a two-way street where they’ll be looking to learn about your business, what risks you’ve identified, the actions you’re completing to minimise them and answer any questions you may have. 

Step 2: Observation

Following the chat, the inspector will take a walk around your worksite to see if what they’ve heard from you matches up with what they actually see happening. 

Step 3: Examination

If the inspector sees anything concerning while on their walkabout, they will follow up with you to go into more detail to discover the cause of the issue. 

Step 4: Documentation

At this stage, the inspector might ask to see what kind of systems and processes you keep. This could include anything from your worker’s licenses or training certificates, machine maintenance logs, to incident reports. The focus will be on whether your records and systems support good health and safety practices for your worksite, workers and business. 

 If the inspector does find an issue, you and the inspector will discuss what needs to be done to fix it. The three main outcomes issued by the inspector are an improvement notice, prohibition notice or an infringement notice. 

Sometimes, they will issue you with an improvement notice which explains what needs to be changed and the timeframe those changes need to be made by. However, if their concerns are more serious, the inspector could tell you to stop using a dangerous piece of machinery and issue you with a prohibition notice.  In extremely rare circumstances (usually only following serious harm or death) an inspector may issue an infringement notice, which could lead to prosecution. 

Using HazardCo can cut the time you spend on health and safety admin in half and will guide you through what you need to do to keep your crew and your business safe. 

Of course, if there are any questions or concerns, just call us at HazardCo for help on 0800 555 339.

Why not kick off the year by keeping your health and safety sorted, starting with a Risk Assessment via the HazardCo App? Risk Assessments help you identify hazards, assess the risk, and implement controls to help prevent incidents. 

The HazardCo Risk Assessment feature is perfect to use before starting a new task or at the beginning of the day, but remember if you need to review the full building site, complete a Site Review instead. So, take a few moments to think about any major tasks coming up, and then open the Risk Assessment tool. The App gives you a number of question areas and will give you some options on how to control the risk – simply select any that apply. Of course, you can add your own comments and upload photos before moving to the next topic.

Once all topics are complete, hit submit and the completed assessment is saved to the Hub and available anywhere, anytime. You can also download the assessment and email to others as needed – easy as that.

The App makes completing a Risk Assessment really straight forward, and the suggestions on how to control possible risks give you confidence you’re doing all you can to keep your crew safe. Because the App is in the palm of your hand 24/7, Risk Assessments can be completed at any time… no paperwork needed. 

As you get back into the swing of things, now’s the perfect time to start planning the first few weeks on-site and ensuring you start out the way you’d like the year to continue. HazardCo’s Risk Assessments help you keep your health and safety sorted and make sure everyone leaves the site safely at the end of each day.

Notifiable events are one of the most frequently asked about topics for the HazardCo Advisory Team. As a tradie or a business owner, you have a legal obligation to report notifiable events to WorkSafe NZ – it sounds like a lot of paperwork right? Wrong. With HazardCo, the App helps you with reporting the accident or near miss easily, and then we can assist you with what to do next! 

By reporting all near misses and accidents on-site, everyone is working together to identify areas where you can better manage risks – it’s all about helping to prevent harm. Everyone on-site has a right to know of potential threats that may impact them, and everyone plays a role in protecting everyone else on-site. Getting everyone to report near misses and accidents creates a culture of open, honest discussions about health and safety.

No matter how big or small, report all near misses and accidents so you can all learn from it. Using the Report Incident feature on your HazardCo App, fill out the fields to capture what happened. Your completed report is available in the Hub, and HazardCo retains this for as long as you’re a member.

If medical treatment was required, it could be a notifiable event. So at this point the App will prompt you to call HazardCo, and our Advisory Team will talk you through what to do next and how to notify WorkSafe NZ. 

As well as taking photos of the accident scene, we’ll recommend you carry out a Site Review and communicate both the review and Accident Report findings to your own team and the wider site crew, by conducting a Toolbox Meeting – again via your HazardCo App.

Remember that it’s a legal requirement to keep these records for a minimum of 5 years so doing everything on the App helps ticks that box for you. 

We all dread an accident occuring, but if anything serious happens on your site it’s important you are prepared, remain calm, and do the right thing. When in doubt, call HazardCo – we are here to support the health and safety needs of all HazardCo members 24/7.

Slips and trips often get a few good laughs, so these incidents are often overlooked in the workplace. However, slips, trips, and falls are one of the most common causes of injuries for workers. 

Ground clutter, uneven or slippery floor surfaces, poor lighting, or lack of signage all contribute to thousands of workers getting injured every year. It is important to define these terms in order to better understand how they can be prevented. 

Fall – Can generally be caused by a person’s sudden loss of balance. 

Slip – A slip can be caused by factors such as wet or frozen surfaces

Trip – Commonly happens due to overlooked objects lying on the ground

The role of the PCBU
PCBUs must oversee the health and safety risks associated with slips and trips, and are responsible for minimising if not eliminating these risks in a reasonably practicable manner. Such as:

– Identifying hazards
– Making a proactive assessment of risks associated with these hazards
– Managing risk control measures
– Reviewing the implementation of the risk control measures

How to reduce slips and trips in the workplace
Here are some methods of addressing and managing slips and trips in the workplace.

Eliminate the risk
Take control of your work area from the design stage and carefully plan changes in floor levels.

Substitution
Design floors with a more slip-resistant surface.

Isolation
Barricade access to high-risk areas and make sure the necessary signs and measures are taken when cleaning or other activities are taking place.

Engineering Controls
Make your floors more slip-resistant by applying appropriate treatments and illuminate your work area. Plan your drainage system well to suit your business’ requirements.

Administrative controls
Increase training and supervision measures.  See to it that there is a checklist of the routine cleaning procedures.

Personal protective equipment
Safeguard your staff with slip-resistant footwear.

Keeping your workplace safe for you and your employees is a priority. The HazardCo App site review resource has a list of site housekeeping and material storage risk controls that should be put in place to mitigate the risk of slips and trips. 

If you would like more information, get in touch with our friendly HazardCo team – we’re always happy to help!

Here at HazardCo, our aim is that every worker on a construction site comes home healthy and safe at the end of every day. 

That’s why we’re constantly on the button. Listening to you, listening to what’s going on out there on-site: your pain points, your concerns, your needs. Because who knows better about life on-site than the people out there on the ground doing the work?

Recently, we’ve heard a lot from our customers surrounding improvement notices – primarily around health monitoring and asbestos. 

Let’s take a closer look:

 

The nitty-gritty

In short, an improvement notice will require changes to be made to improve a risky situation (as identified by the regulator) within a certain time period. 

In accordance with the requirements outlined in the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015, enforcement measures give a WorkSafe inspector power to issue improvement notices if they reasonably believe a person – 

  1. is contravening a provision of this Act or regulations; or
  2. is likely to contravene this Act or regulations.

 

Getting workers up to scratch

WorkSafe has recently identified a lack of knowledge and planning around the subject. Notably, the vagueness around procedures in place to identify asbestos materials, and more pressingly, creating plans of action in working safely with asbestos and how to have it removed.

Needless to say, this stuff is important and could and will save lives, so managers and workers need to get on board – sharpish.

 

Finding effective methods

A selection of our customers have been issued improvement notices by WorkSafe regulators. Off the back of this, they’ve had to develop a safe and effective method for determining the presence of asbestos before commencement of any demolition or renovation work.

And that’s where we come in. 

After following the guidance from our Advisory team and using HazardCo tools, WorkSafe were happy with the development of many of our customer’s procedures, agreeing that the improvement notice had been met and they wouldn’t be taking the matter any further. 

 

An empowered workforce

But this isn’t just about WorkSafe. It’s about our customers feeling they are informed enough to get on with their workday safely. With knowledge, comes a better and safer way of working – and this knowledge is what anyone working in hazardous situations deserves. 

 

With HazardCo as a tool of empowerment, resource and dedicated support, our customers have the information they need to keep their workers safe and to be fully compliant with ease.

Embedding positive health and safety practices around the country, we collaborate to educate – giving workers the power to be the best at their job they can. And what could be a better improvement than that? 

When it comes to incidents, a common misconception is that you need to report incidents to HazardCo immediately. This is not the case. Reporting to HazardCo can often happen later once details...
If an incident happens at work and your first thought is paperwork, you’re doing health and safety wrong.  Reporting incidents and near misses is vital to good business, and that begins wit...
The construction industry is known for its potential hazards and risks, and unfortunately, incidents sometimes occur. Having an incident on-site can be alarming, but your response is crucial i...
Near Misses According to WorkSafe NZ, a near miss is defined as an incident that occurs but doesn’t lead to injury, illness, or damage.  No matter what working environment you are in, work...
When risks and hazards are recognised early, controls can be put in place to prevent harm to workers, visitors, and the public.  Reporting and controlling hazards/risks is a way of being pr...
To put it simply, health and safety regulators (WorkSafe) work with you and your workers to keep you safe and healthy. Their main goal is to ensure that New Zealand businesses are safe and hea...
Why not kick off the year by keeping your health and safety sorted, starting with a Risk Assessment via the HazardCo App? Risk Assessments help you identify hazards, assess the risk, and imple...
Notifiable events are one of the most frequently asked about topics for the HazardCo Advisory Team. As a tradie or a business owner, you have a legal obligation to report notifiable events to ...
Slips and trips often get a few good laughs, so these incidents are often overlooked in the workplace. However, slips, trips, and falls are one of the most common causes of injuries for worker...
[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Here at HazardCo, our aim is that every worker on a construction site comes home healthy and safe at the end of every day.  That’s why we’re constantly on...