Incident Reporting and Investigation

Report all Incidents to your Supervisor or Safety and Security immediately!

An incident is any unplanned or unwanted event, which resulted in, or could have resulted in injury or damage to equipment, property, process or environment. 

 Types of incidents include: 

  • Injury/Illness 
  • Property/Equipment Damage 
  • Fire/Explosion 
  • Spill/Release 
  • Near Miss* 
  • Public Complaint 
  • Regulatory/Permit Non-Conformance 

 *A Near Miss Incident is an unplanned or unwanted event, which in different circumstances could have resulted in an injury/illness, property/equipment damage, a fire/explosion, or a spill/release. 

Incident investigations shall be conducted to determine the causes of all incidents so that appropriate action can be taken to prevent recurrence. The role of incident investigation in a health and safety program is prevention. Therefore, it is important to investigate not only the incidents that cause loss, but also near misses because of their potential if the circumstances had only been slightly different.   

All incidents – regardless of size or impact – need to be investigated.  The process helps StFX look beyond what happened to discover why it happened.  This allows us to identify and correct shortcomings in our OH&S program.  

StFX will investigate ALL incidents that could have resulted in a loss (near misses) and ALL incidents that do result in a loss (i.e. injury, property damage, fire, spill, etc) to determine the cause and corrective actions that are required to prevent any recurrence. 

      1.   Report incident to your Supervisor or management immediately. 

  1. Supervisor to investigate all incidents as soon as they happen. 

  1. Supervisor to report incident to their manager and the OH&S Officer as soon as possible, preferably by text message or email. 

  1. Written report, using the Incident Investigation Report will be developed by the Supervisor and forwarded to their manager and the OH&S Officer by email within 24 hours. 

  1. Final report to be submitted to Senior Management by the OH&S Officer within 48 hours.  Some incidents may take longer to investigate and finalize.  In these cases, a preliminary report will be submitted to Senior Management within 48 hours, with the final report to follow as soon as possible.  Senior Management will be the final signatory on all incident reports. 

  1. Final report will also be signed by one of the chairs of the Joint Occupational Health and Safety Committee, and a summary of the incident will be provided to all committee members at the first meeting following the incident. 

 Investigation Technique  

  1. Take charge of the scene and make sure any injured are attended to. Do not disturb the scene expect to remove the injured person or protect property against future damage. 

  1. Ensure that no further injury or damage occurs. 

  1. Determine what happened. 

  1. Secure the area with red tape to prevent other workers from disturbing the incident scene. 

  1. Collect and safeguard any physical evidence. 

  1. Obtain other evidence such as – photographs, diagrams, and statements. 

  1. Determine what corrective action will prevent recurrence. 

  1. Complete initial Incident Investigation Report within 24 hours  



 An injury or illness arising from a work-related condition or incident becomes reportable to the WCB if: 

Medical care is required. 

The health care provider advises work restrictions relative to the workers’ duties beyond the day of injury/illness. 

  • The worker is not able to work the next scheduled shift beyond the day of injury/illness. 

If an injury/illness requires reporting to the WCB, a WCB Accident Report will be completed and sent to WCB within five business days. 



Section 63 (1) of the OH&S Act requires that injuries and accidents are reported to Nova Scotia Labour and Advanced Education, OH&S Division as follows:  

  1. as soon as possible, but in no case later than twenty-four hours, after a fire, flood or accident at the workplace that causes 

(i) unconsciousness, 

(ii) a fracture of the skull, spine, pelvis, arm, leg, ankle, wrist or a major part of the hand or foot, 

(iii) loss or amputation of a leg, arm, hand, foot, finger or toe, 

(iv) a third degree burn to any part of the body, 

(v) loss of sight in one or both eyes, 

(vi) asphyxiation or poisoning, 

(vii) any injury that requires the admission to hospital, or 

(viii) any injury that endangers the life, 

of an employee, unless the injury can be treated by immediate first aid or medical treatment and the person can return to work the following day;  

  1. as soon as possible, but in no case later than twenty-four hours, after 

  1. an accidental explosion, 

  1. a major structural failure or collapse of a building or other structure, 

  1. a major release of a hazardous substance, or 

  1. a fall from a work area in circumstances where fall protection is required by the regulations,  

at the workplace, whether any person is injured or not; and  

  1. immediately when a person is killed from any cause, or is injured from any cause in a manner likely to prove fatal, at the workplace.