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Did you know there's a time limit for the investigate into your latest workplace incident?

by , 03 July 2014
Because no two accidents are the same, you must never treat them the same way. For example, you can't treat an employee's death as if he developed a bad cough and vice versa.

It also affects: The way you close off the accident scene; The way you collect evidence; And even the amount of time you have to do it.

Read on to discover just how long you have to uncover the truth...

*********** Reader's choice  ***************
Discover how to get COID to award every incident your company claims for...
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This time limit isn't just a random health and safety rule; it's the law!

 
The law gives you a timeframe in which you have to investigate the accident. Section 24 of the OHS Act specifically outlines which incidents these times limits apply to. 
 
 Now, you may think this is a simple task. It's not!
 
An incident investigation takes time and involves a lot people. It also requires planning and collecting evidence. 
 
You need to be prepared to do all of the investigation in a set period. It's as if the DoL and COID shout: 'Ready! Steady! Investigate!'.
 
So, do you know how long you have to get it all done?
 

Here's how much time you have to get your incident investigation done

 
There are two different time limits. One for accidents that cause injuries and another for incidents resulting in occupational diseases.
 
For injuries, you have seven days. 'Injuries' include fatalities, loss of consciousness, loss of limbs and, anything that stops employees from working for more than three days.
 
For occupational diseases, you have 14 days. These diseases can include carpal tunnel syndrome, occupational asthma or acute airway obstructions (dust or chemicals).
 
So ensure you complete you investigation and incident report within the right time limit to avoid issues with the DoL.
 
*********** Hot off the press  ************
Do you have more than 20 employees?
 
Don't ignore this health and safety obligation or else!
 
The DoL will slap you with a R50 000 fine or 1 year in jail if you don't have a health and safety representative. 
 
Here's how to avoid it…
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