Health & Safety

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Accident Investigation in BT

2 September 2010

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The BT Investigation Form contains six questions that must be answered fully to the best of your knowledge, information and belief.

It is all about establishing facts.

Any views, opinions, supposition, etc, must be capable of being substantiated - possibly in a court of law!

The Questions

  1. Describe what happened.
    • State where and what actually happened.
    • Take witness statements, where possible and attach to report form.
    • Take photographs or draw a sketch.
    • Impound faulty equipment where necessary, as evidence or to prevent re-use.
  2. Give reference to existing instructions or guidance covering the activity.
    • You can quote from ISIS, SMS Checklists, Engineering Safety Guides, any risk assessments that have been produced or any other source of information related to the work in hand.
    • State if individual has been made aware of such information etc.
    • Make reference to any specific training requirement and state whether individual was trained to that standard. Licensing will be an issue.
    • “none “ or “not applicable” will not be accepted as an answer here.
  3. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
    • State what should be used, whether it was held by the individual and whether or not it was used/worn in the correct manner.
    • If PPE is found to be defective and is a factor to the incident cause, consider keeping it as evidence.
  4. What were the cause(s) of the accident?
    • Determine the actual cause of the accident - not the cause of the injury!
    • Say how and why the accident occurred.
    • Accidents seldom have just one cause, e.g. Wet weather and incorrect footwear may both lead to a slipping incident.
  5. What action has been taken to prevent a recurrence?
    • Give full details such as additional training, provision of additional PPE, etc.
    • “told to take more care” is not acceptable!
    • Consider the BT Discipline Code where flagrant breaches of health and safety rules have occurred.
  6. What further action have you taken?
    • This may include additional SMS checks, fix reports, additional risk assessments, team briefing, etc.
    • Include any action taken that is aimed at a wider audience, i.e. your own team or others that may benefit.


Remember, you can seek advice from Safety Consultancy Services if you experience difficulties with your investigation. The Accident Reporting Group (ARG) can give advice regarding the reporting procedures, etc.