My State:
Free Special Reports
Get Your FREE Special Report. Download Any One Of These FREE Special Reports, Instantly!
Featured Special Report
Claim Your Free Copy of 12 Ways to Boost Workplace Safety

Managing safety training, enforcing safety rules, and monitoring employee performance is a big responsibility. You’re the one who can do the most to successfully promote safety in the workplace.

Follow the 12 simple, down-to-earth suggestions in this special report and learn how to provide the guidance and leadership your employees need and your management relies on

Download Now!
Bookmark and Share
September 16, 2011
Incident vs. Accident: What's the Difference?

In a BLR webinar entitled 'Near Misses: Why You Should Treat Near Misses as Wake-Up Calls That Can Prevent Serious Accidents,' Pamela Ferrante, CSP, CHMM, president of JC Safety & Environmental, Inc. of Pittsburgh, PA, discussed the importance of near miss reporting.

For a Limited Time receive a FREE Safety Special Report on the "50 Tips For More-Effective Safety Training."  Receive 75 pages of useful safety information broken down into three training sections. Download Now
Near Miss Poster

Near miss reporting is a piece of a strong safety culture. It is a way to get an organization talking about safety in general. With regard to incidence and near hits and near misses there are some differences in the safety field.

Incident: An unplanned, undesired event that hinders completion of a task and may cause injury, illness, or property damage or some combination of all three in varying degrees from minor to catastrophic. Unplanned and undesired do not mean unable to prevent. Unplanned and undesired also do not mean unable to prepare for Crisis planning is how we prepare for serious incidents that occur that require response for mitigation.

Near Miss: A subset of incidents that could have resulted in injury, illness or property damage, if given a different set of circumstances, but didn't. Near misses are also known as 'close calls.' Perhaps the better term to consider is 'near hit.'

Accident: Definition is often similar to incident, but supports the mindset that it could not have been prevented. An accident is the opposite of the fundamental intentions of a safety program, which is to find hazards, fix hazard, and prevent incidents. When we accept that accidents have no cause, we assume that they will happen again.

Pam Ferrante, CSP, CHMM, is president of JC Safety & Environmental, Inc. of Pittsburgh, PA. She can be reached by telephone at 412-414-4769 or by email at

Need help staying on top of critical Safety and Environmental issues? See all the webinars BLR has to offer.

Related Content

Expert urges employers to learn from accidents

Legal aftermath of fatal accidents

Five key steps to investigate and correct near misses

Featured Special Report:
12 Ways to Boost Workplace Safety
Twitter  Facebook  Linked In
Follow Us
Copyright © 2017 Business & Legal Resources. All rights reserved. 800-727-5257
This document was published on
Document URL: