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VIII. Accident Investigation

When an accident occurs, medical aid should be obtained immediately for anyone injured at Nicholls State University. All accidents, including those to non-employees, should be investigated. “Near misses” should be investigated as thoroughly as an accident that results in injury or property damage. The supervisor of the work unit involved is primarily responsible for conducting the accident investigation; the safety officer or safety committees may be involved depending upon the nature and severity of the accident.

A. Occupational Injury or Disease
When an employee is injured, he must report to University Health Services. An incident report is filled out and submitted to the University Safety Officer and the Human Resources Department. It is the responsibility of the employee to contact the Human Resource Office so an Employer’s Report of Injury/Illness can be completed and entered into STARS Web vs8.5 – State of Louisiana.

B. Accident Investigation
After acquiring necessary medical aid for injured persons, the supervisor should follow the following steps in investigating accidents:
1. If possible, ask the person or persons involved to describe what happened. Do not fix blame or find fault; just get the facts.
2. Survey the accident scene for information. Assemble any objects that might have contributed to the accident.
3. Determine if there were any witnesses to the accident and get their accounts of the incident. 4. Take whatever steps are necessary to prevent recurrences until the condition can be permanently corrected.
5. Complete the Accident Investigation Form (DA-2000).

This section contains an Accident Investigation Form (DA-2000), a sample completed form and instructions for completing the investigation report. The accident report shall be filed with the Department Head and the University Safety Officer. The record shall be kept for one (1) year. A follow-up report shall be made to the file to confirm that corrective action was taken and what was done.

If an accident involves a visitor, client, or student, a General Liability DA 3000 Form shall be completed. See sample DA 3000 Form.

C. Job Safety Analysis
Job safety analysis is a procedure used to review work methods and uncover hazards that may result in accidents. It is one of the first steps in hazard prevention, accident analysis and safety training because a hazard must be recognized before it can be eliminated. Job safety analysis should be performed on all tasks that have a history of resulting in personal injury or property damage. Contained in this section are the following: Job Safety Analysis Worksheet (JSA 1-00) and a sample completed form. Job safety analysis reporting forms should be maintained on file in the department creating the documents and should be readily available to employees. An index naming the task, date the job safety analysis was revised should be maintained in each department’s records.

D. Instructions for Completing Accident Investigation Form
The Accident Investigation Form is a tool to assist in determining causes and procedures to prevent the recurrence of similar accidents. All spaces are to be completed; notations such as N/A (not applicable) are not acceptable.

Section A – Identifies patterns of injury
1. Record the date and time that the accident occurred.
2. Record the date and time that the accident was reported.
3. Record the injured person’s name and title (if a state employee). If the injured person is not a state employee, attach a sheet with address and phone number.
4. Give the name of employee’s supervisor at the time of injury.
5. Give general location of accident (maintenance shop, storage shed, etc.)
6. Give exact location of accident (doorway in room 320, north hallway, etc.)
7. Indicate if and when a similar incident has occurred.
Examples:
Same individual: Injured person slipped and fell last month. Circle “yes” and record the date previous accident occurred.
Same location: Another person was involved in an accident in this location last year. Circle “yes” and record the date of that accident.
Same operation: Another person was involved in an accident while performing the same operation. Circle “yes” and record the date of that accident.
8. Indicate if the person received medical treatment; and if so, indicate if the treatment was provided by a doctor. Record the estimated number of work days the person will miss.
9. Record what equipment the person was using (or what hallway or sidewalk if it was a trip and fall).
10. List witnesses’ names. If they are not state employees, obtain phone numbers and  addresses.

Section B – Employee’s description of the accident
Ask the person to describe the specific details of the accident. Get information on the events leading up to the accident.

Section C – Supervisor’s appraisal of action/condition
Most accidents occur because of a combination of an unsafe act and an unsafe physical condition. Look for both, and then draw a conclusion as to why the unsafe act was committed or why the unsafe condition existed.

Section D – Immediate action taken to prevent recurrence
Once an accident occurs, the investigator must take immediate action to prevent a similar event. Indicate what needs to be done and who is going to do it. Suggest what long range action is necessary to prevent the accident. Record your comments on what could be done and tell other what could be done to prevent similar accidents at other locations.

Write your name and title on the bottom of the form. The supervisor in the area where the accident occurred retains the original form. Copies should be sent to the University Safety Officer and college deans, directors, department heads, supervisors, etc.

E. Sample Procedure for Job Safety Analysis

When to Perform a Job Safety Analysis
Each first line supervisor is expected to conduct or review at least one job safety analysis per month to evaluate jobs and work methods and to eliminate hazards. Each first line supervisor is expected to review a job safety analysis for each serious accident to determine the cause(s).

F. Job Safety Analysis Procedure
Step 1: Select the job
In selecting jobs to be analyzed and in establishing the order of analysis, the following factors should be considered. They are listed in order of importance.
1. Production of Injuries – Every job that has produced a medical treatment or disabling injury during the past three years should be analyzed.
2. Frequency of Accidents – Jobs that repeatedly produce accidents are candidates for a job safety analysis. Subsequent injuries indicate that preventive action taken prior to their occurrence was not successful.
3. Potential Severity – Some jobs may not have a history of accidents but may have the potential for severe injury or property damage. The greater the potential severity, the greater its priority for a job safety analysis.
4. New Jobs – New operation created by changes in equipment or processes obviously have no history of accidents, but their accident potential should be fully appreciated. A job safety analysis should be made on every new job created. Analysis should not be delayed until an accident or near miss occurs.

Step 2: Perform the Analysis
The supervisor responsible for the task should perform the Job Safety Analysis Work Sheet (JSA-1-00). The supervisor should conduct the job safety analysis with the help of employees who regularly perform the task. The job being analyzed should be broken down into a sequence of step that describes the process in detail. Avoid two common errors: 1) making the breakdown too detailed so that an unnecessarily large number of steps result, or 2) making the job breakdown so general that the basic step are not distinguishable. As a rule, the job safety analysis should contain less than twelve (12) steps. If more steps are needed, the job should be broken down into separate tasks. Job safety analysis involves the following steps.
1. Selecting a qualified person to perform the analysis.
2. Briefing the employee demonstrating the task on the purpose of the analysis,
3. Observing the performance of the job and breaking it into basic steps.
4. Recording and describing each step in the breakdown.
5. Reviewing the breakdown and description with the person who performed the task.

Select an experienced, capable and cooperative person who is willing to share ideas. He should be familiar with the purpose and method of a job safety analysis. Sometimes it is difficult for someone who is intimately familiar with a job to describe it in detail; therefore, reviewing a completed job safety analysis before conducting one will help illustrate the terminology and procedure to be followed.

Review the breakdown and analysis with the person who performed the job to ensure agreement of the sequence and description of the steps. Variations of routine procedures should be analyzed also. The wording for each step should begin with words such as “remove”, “open”, or “lift”.

Step 3: Identify Hazards
Hazards associated with each step are identified. To ensure a thorough analysis, answer the following questions about each operation:
1. Is there a danger of striking against, being struck by, or otherwise making injurious contact with an object.
2. Can the employee be caught in, by, or between the objects?
3. Is there a potential for a slip or trip? Can someone fall on the same level or to another?
4. Can an employee strain himself or herself by pushing, pulling, lifting, bending, or twisting? 5. Is the environment hazardous to one’s health (toxic gas, vapor, fumes, dust, heat, or radiation)?

Step 4: Develop Solutions
The final step in job safety analysis is to develop a safe, efficient job procedure to prevent accidents. The principle solutions for minimizing hazards that are identified in the analysis are as follows:
1. Find a new way to do the job – To find an entirely new way to perform a task, determine the goal of the operation and analyze the various ways of reaching the goal. Select the safest method. Consider work saving tools and equipment.
2. Change the physical conditions that create the hazard – If a new way to perform job cannot be developed, change the physical condition (such as tools, material, equipment, layout, or location) to eliminate or control the hazard.
3. Change the work procedure to eliminate the hazard – Investigate changes in the job procedure that would enable employees to perform the task without being exposed to the hazard.
4. Reduce the frequency of its performance – Often a repair or service job has to be repeated frequently because of another condition that needs correction. This is particularly true in maintenance and material handling. To reduce the frequency of a repetitive job, eliminate the condition or practice that result in excessive repairs or service. If the condition cannot be eliminated, attempt to minimize the effect of the condition. Reducing the number of times a job is performed contributes to safer operations only because the frequency of exposure to the hazard is reduced. It is, of course, preferable to eliminate hazards and prevent exposure by changing physical conditions or revising the job procedure or both.

In developing solutions, general precautions such as “be alert”, “use caution”, or “be careful” are useless. Solutions should precisely state what to do and how to do it. For example, “make certain the wrench does not slip or cause loss of balance” does not tell how to prevent the wrench from slipping. A good recommendation explains both “what” and “how”. For example, “set wrench jaws securely on the bolt”. Test its grip by exerting slight pressure on it. Brace yourself against something immovable, or take a solid stance. The job safety analysis worksheet should be used as a reference when completing the Job Safety Analysis Form (JSA-1-00). Refer to the notes taken on the worksheet when determining hazards and recommendations. Using the Job Safety Analysis (JSA-1-00), document hazards associated with each step. Check with the employee who performed the job and others experienced in performing the job for additional ideas. A reliable list will be developed through observation and discussion.

Step 5: Conduct a Follow-up Analysis
No less than once per month, each supervisor should observe employees as they perform at least one job for which a job safety analysis has been developed. The purpose of these observations is to determine whether or not the employees are doing the jobs in accordance with the safety procedures developed. The supervisor should review the job safety analysis before doing the follow-up review to reinforce the proper procedures that are to be followed.

G. Use of Job Safety Analysis
The job safety analysis provides a learning opportunity for the supervisor and employee. Copies of the job safety analysis should be distributed to all employees who perform that job. The supervisor should explain the analysis to the employees and, if necessary, provide additional training.

New employees or employees asked to perform new tasks must be trained to use the safe and efficient procedures developed in the job safety analysis. The new employee should be taught the correct method to perform a task before dangerous habits develop, to recognize the hazards associated with each job step and to use the necessary precautions to avoid injury or accidents.

Finally, the job safety analysis is an accident investigation tool. When accidents occur involving a job for which a job safety analysis has been performed, the analysis should be reviewed to determine if proper procedures were followed or if the procedure should be revised.

H. Recordkeeping
Job safety analysis reporting forms should be maintained on file in the department creating the documents and should be readily accessible to employees. An index naming the task and the date the job safety analysis was completed should be kept on file.

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