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Here is a list of what’s included in Protecting.

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How Long Should Accident Records Be Kept?

Accident records should be kept for a minimum of three years in the UK from the date of the incident. An accident record must include the date, time, and location, details about the people involved, and a description of the accident. To stay safe you can keep accident records beyond three years.

Part of the reason for this amount of time is that in the UK a person has three years to bring a personal injury claim. Keeping accident records ensures all the information is there to support/defend against a claim. The type of accident can also affect how long records should be kept, which is covered below.

How long should you keep COSHH records?

Under the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations (COSHH), you should keep COSHH records for 40 years. This includes any accident records of exposure to hazardous substances in the workplace. Any records that detail asbestos in the workplace should also be kept for 40 years from the last incident.

There are slightly different time limits for a few other accidents related to hazardous substances. Any lists of employees exposed to group three and four biological agents due to an accident or incident must be held for 10 years. Maintaining COSHH records for the appropriate time helps protect people and your business.

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What accident records do you need to keep?

Certain accidents must be reported to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR). These include work-related accidents that cause:

Examples of reportable injuries include fractures, amputations, serious burns, sight loss, unconsciousness, organ damage, hypothermia, and more. If a non-worker is injured and taken away for any treatment this must also be reported under RIDDOR. You can find out more with the HSE guide.

Maintaining accurate and up-to-date accident records also helps when dealing with your insurance company. If you fail to keep a record of any accidents or delete the records before the minimum three-year period has passed, you could breach workplace health and safety legislation. This may result in consequences such as fines and other penalties.

Where do you keep accident records?

If your company has more than 10 employees you must legally have an accident book under social security law in the UK. You can purchase an accident book from the HSE directly or use your own record system for safe storage. Our accident management software provides a secure online solution to record workplace accidents and incidents.

It’s vital that wherever you keep your accident records there’s no risk of damage, theft, or loss. This isn’t an excuse if your organisation fails to produce evidence of keeping accident records for at least three years. Start your free 15-day trial of our accident recording software to see how easy it is to stay safe.