Incident notification and investigation

A person conducting a business or undertaking must notify WorkSafe ACT as soon as they become aware of a death, serious injury or illness or dangerous incident that arises out of the conduct of the business or undertaking.

A serious injury or illness means work related injury that results in:

  • immediate hospital treatment as an in-patient; or
  • immediate treatment for serious injuries (for example amputation, scalping, a spinal injury, loss of a bodily function or a serious laceration, burn, head injury or eye injury), or medical treatment within 48 hours of exposure to a substance.

A person conducting a business must also notify any infection to which the carrying out of work is a significant contributing factor, including any infection that is reliably attributable to carrying out work:

  • with micro-organisms;
  • that involves providing treatment or care to a person;
  • that involves contact with human blood or body substances; or,
  • that involves handling or contact with animals, animal hides, skins, wool or hair, animal carcasses or animal waste products.

The following occupational zoonoses contracted in the course of work involving handling or contact with animals, animal hides, skins, wool or hair, animal carcasses or animal waste products:

  • Q fever;
  • Anthrax;
  • Leptospirosis;
  • Brucellosis;
  • Hendra Virus;
  • Avian Influenza; or,
  • Psittacosis.

WorkSafe ACT must also be immediately notified of any dangerous incident that exposes a person to a serious health or safety risk from immediate or imminent exposure to:

  • the uncontrolled escape, spillage or leakage of a substance;
  • an uncontrolled implosion, explosion or fire;
  • an uncontrolled escape of gas, steam or a pressurised substance;
  • an electric shock;
  • the fall or release from height of any plant, substance or thing;
  • the collapse, overturning, failure or malfunction of, or damage to, plant that is required to be licensed or registered;
  • the collapse or partial collapse of a structure, including an excavation or of any shoring supporting an excavation;
  • the inrush of water, mud or gas into an underground excavation or tunnel;
  • the interruption of the main system of ventilation to an underground excavation or tunnel; or
  • other incidents as stated in the Work Health and Safety Regulation 2011.

Notice of an incident must be given by the fastest possible means. If notice is given by telephone, WorkSafe ACT may request follow-up written notice of the incident. This must be provided within 48 hours of the request.

A record of each notifiable incident must be kept by the person conducting a business or undertaking for at least five years.

The person with management or control of a workplace at which a notifiable incident has occurred must ensure the site of the incident is not disturbed until a work health and safety inspector arrives at the site or directs otherwise. This does not prevent any action required to protect a person's health or safety, help someone who is injured or make the site safe.

For further information refer to the Notify WorkSafe page.

On this page