Minister Pat Breen signs new regulations to improve reporting by employers of workplace accidents and dangerous occurrences

July 15th, 2016 - Pat Breen

The new Regulations will come into effect from 1 November 2016
The Minister for Employment and Small Business, Mr. Pat Breen T.D., signed regulations entitled the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (General Application) (Amendment) (No. 3) Regulations, 2016 [ S.I No. 370 of 2016].

The new Regulations are intended to assist employers in complying with their statutory duty to report to the Health and Safety Authority on workplace accidents and dangerous occurrences.
Employers – including the self-employed and farmers – are legally required to notify the Health and Safety Authority when there is an accident at work resulting in an injury that prevents them working for 4 plus days.
Minister Breen said “I am pleased to have been able to introduce new regulations that will help to increase reporting compliance by clarifying reporting requirements. As Minister for Employment and Small Business, I know that businesses will welcome the much simplified, updated and consolidated set of rules that make it easier for them to identify the particular incidents that should be reported to the Health and Safety Authority. Safety in the workplace is of paramount importance and this information will support the HSA’s activities and enable them to advise employers on how to prevent injuries and accidental loss of life.

The new Regulations have been designed to increase the reporting of accidents and dangerous occurrences to the Health and Safety Authority by:
• Clearly setting out which accidents must be reported to the Authority.
• Relaxing the requirements for the reporting of accidents to members of the public due to a change which only requires those incidents that require hospitalisation of the victim to be reported.
• Itemising the types of dangerous occurrences which must be reported in a manner, which better reflects the modern workplace and work practices.
The new Regulations will come into effect from 1 November 2016.
SI No 370 of 2016 Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (General Application) (Amendment) (No. 3) Regulations 2016

ENDS

For further information contact:
Press Office, Department of Jobs Enterprise and Innovation: T: 01-6312200 E: press.office@djei.ie

Notes to Editors

The reporting of workplace accidents to the Health and Safety Authority (HSA) provides information on the characteristics of the accident victim, the nature of the incident, and the causes and circumstances of accidents. The information supports the Authority’s activities and enables it to advise employers on strategies to help prevent injuries, ill health and accidental loss of life.

It is known that there is significant under-reporting of accidents to the HSA, as is the case in other national employer reporting systems. Recent research undertaken by the ESRI on worker injuries reported to the HSA, comparing reporting to the Authority with figures from the CSO for the same period suggests that under-reporting of accidents to the HSA is particularly evident among the self-employed and smaller employers, and is particularly acute in relation to farming.

The new regulations are entitled Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (General Application) (Amendment) (No. 3) Regulations 2016.