Changes are now in force that mean businesses will no longer have to report over three day injuries sustained at work; instead they will now have to report over seven day injuries. Additionally they will have extra time in which to make the report, which means they now have up to 15 days to report rather than the 10 days previously allowed.
It has been said that the changes to RIDDOR will most likely see a fall of around 30,000 less reports per year; which has been estimated as a saving of around 10,000 hours per year to UK businesses.
In reality, for the many businesses that we represent at MESH, the change will only have a limited effect as most only had limited numbers of incidents to report as the law previously stood. It also remains the requirement that all businesses should investigate over three day incidents in order to review its risk assessments and to prevent an incident recurring.
The options available for reporting have also changed because now the only method available in most instances is online. For fatalities and the most serious injuries a reporting phone line is available during daytime hours.
From our discussions with employers it seems that the key benefit to the changes is to remove the need to report when an individual decides to take the opportunity of taking a few days off after a workplace incident occurs. Many have complained in the past to us that reporting under RIDDOR did not seem always fair when it seemed obvious that the individual was more than likely just swinging it.
What seems more obvious to most is that the reduced reporting levels and therefore the need to follow up on the reports will mean less work for the HSE, which means that it’s the government who will see most of the savings.