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U.S. Geological Survey Manual

SM 445-2-H CHAPTER 7

Accident/Incident Reporting and Serious Accident Investigation

Instructions:  This chapter is revised to reflect the change in DOI policy that states that a serious accident is one involving the death of an employee or hospitalization of three or more persons, or Departmental or Bureau property loss in excess of $250,000 (previously $100,000).  This chapter also reflects the new Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Form 300 used for an annual summary of injuries and illnesses, replacing references to the old OSHA Form 200.

1.  Purpose.

A.  To specify the minimum Occupational Safety and Health Program (Program) requirements for reporting Department of the Interior (Departmental or DOI) and U.S. Geological Survey (Bureau or USGS) incidents and accidents and additional requirements for the reporting of Departmental or USGS serious accidents. For reporting purposes, a Departmental or USGS incident is an unplanned event involving Departmental or USGS property, personnel, volunteers, contractors, emergency firefighters, the public, or the environment that could have resulted in an injury, illness, or material loss but did not. If there is injury, illness, or loss of property, the incident is reported as an accident. In brief, a Departmental or USGS serious accident is an accident involving a death and/or three or more persons hospitalized and/or Departmental or USGS property loss in excess of $250,000. A complete serious accident definition is given in Appendix 7-1, “Serious Accident Investigation,” of this Handbook.

B.  To specify requirements for conducting a serious accident investigation involving Departmental or USGS personnel, volunteers, contractors, emergency firefighters, or the public, when Departmental or USGS property and/or operations are involved (except aviation mishaps which will be investigated by the Office of Aircraft Services [OAS] in accordance with 352 DM 6).

C.  Reportable accidents are those involving a USGS government employee, contractor, or volunteer; a member of the public injured while on or in contact with USGS property; and government or private property damaged during conduct of a USGS activity.

D. All serious accidents (those resulting in the death of an employee or hospitalization of three or more personnel, or $250,000 in property damage) shall be reported to the Bureau Safety Manager through the Regional Safety Manager/Regional Safety Officer by the appropriate organizational head immediately upon learning of the event or within 4 hours of occurrence. Bureau Safety Managers will, in turn, notify the Bureau Designated Agency Safety and Health Official (DASHO) through the Chief, Headquarters Office of Management Services, while Regional Safety Managers/Officers will notify their respective Regional Directors/Executives.

2.  References.

A. 29 CFR 1960, Subpart I, Recordkeeping and Reporting Requirements.

B.  Department of the Interior “Serious Accident Investigation,” Appendix 7-1 of this Handbook.

C.  Department of the Interior “Serious Accidents Related to Wildland and Prescribed Fire,” Appendix 7-2 of this Handbook.

D.  Memorandum of Understanding between the Department of the Interior and the Department of Agriculture, October 26, 1995, Appendix 7-3 of this Handbook.

3. Incident/Accident Reporting Requirements.

A.  Supervisor Requirements. The appropriate immediate supervisor will record all incidents and accidents in the Safety Management Information System (SMIS). The SMIS is managed by the Office of Occupational Health and Safety (OHS), with administrative support provided by the USGS Safety and Environmental Management Branch.

(1)  The SMIS Accident/Incident Report is the official Departmental or USGS method for reporting incidents and accidents. A SMIS Accident/Incident Report is defined as the electronic entry of factual and supplemental accident/incident information into SMIS. The SMIS automated system for reporting an accident/incident is located at the following Web site http://www.smis.doi.gov.

(2)  The USGS Safety and Environmental Management Branch serves as the Office of Record for SMIS Accident/Incident Reports and for additional serious accident investigation reports as described in Appendix 7-1 of this Handbook. This information will be controlled in accordance with Privacy Act and Freedom of Information Act requirements.

B.  Personnel Requirements.  Personnel are required to immediately report to their supervisors every job-related accident or incident and to complete either the OWCP Form CA-1 (Traumatic Injury) or OWCP Form CA-2 (Illness) when injury has occurred. Accidents include:

(1)  An injury, occupational illness, or death connected with the performance of work duties by personnel, volunteers, contractors, or emergency firefighters under Departmental or USGS jurisdiction.

(2)  An injury or death to the public and/or property damage related to Departmental or USGS operations.

(3)  A fire resulting in at least a $500 loss involving vehicles, motorized equipment, aircraft, watercraft, structures, or contents of any property under Departmental or USGS control.

(4)  Property damage or injury resulting from the operation of Departmental or USGS, General Services Administration (GSA), privately owned, or commercially leased vehicles, or motorized equipment used for official business.

(5)  Other property under Departmental or USGS control that is damaged by accident, whether or not it is to be repaired or replaced, regardless of who caused the damage—employee, volunteer, contractor, emergency firefighter, or private individual.

(6)  Shelter deployments and entrapments as a result of wildland or prescribed fire-related operations.

C.  Work-Related Injury Reports.

(1)  Appropriate employee injury compensation forms will be prepared by the involved employee or his/her representative (see 20 CFR 10).

(2)  SMIS can generate the Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs CA-1 Form, “Federal Employee’s Notice of Traumatic Injury and Claim for Continuation of Pay/Compensation,” and CA-2 Form, “Notice of Occupational Disease and Claim for Compensation,” based on information submitted in the SMIS Accident/Incident Report.

D.  Investigation Requirements.

(1)  Except for serious accidents, immediate supervisors will investigate and record in SMIS all incidents and accidents that occur under their jurisdiction.

(2)  For a serious accident, the immediate supervisor must initiate the recording of the accident in SMIS, but the report must also be reviewed by the USGS Organizational Manager of the facility incurring the accident. Serious accident investigation requirements and responsibilities are listed in Appendix 7-1 of this Handbook. The USGS Organizational Manager is the facility/organization manager who has direct line authority over employee activity when and where a serious accident occurs. Examples of such administrators include a Science Center Director or Office/Team Chief.

(3)  The Bureau DASHO will ensure that serious accidents are fully investigated in accordance with Appendix 7-1 of this Handbook.  Appendix 7-1 contains requirements for serious accident investigations; time frames for completion of reports; immediate notifications; the use of a Serious Accident Investigation Team (SAIT) versus a Trained Investigator (TI); SAIT composition, responsibilities, and qualifications; and report recommendation follow-up procedures.

(4)  Wildland and prescribed fire-related serious accidents will be investigated in accordance with Appendix 7-2 of this Handbook.

E.  Accident/Exposure Logging Requirements.

(1)  Immediate supervisors, with the oversight of USGS region and/or Bureau safety staff, will review and record job-related SMIS Accident/Incident Reports, including first-aid cases, in SMIS within 6 working days following the date appropriate management was notified of the occurrence. Note: This is the equivalent of entering incident/accident reports on Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Form 300, “Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses” (see 29 CFR 1960.67). Copies of the report can be retrieved through SMIS.

(2)  Information on Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs (OWCP) Continuation of Pay and employee hours worked will be entered in SMIS by the DOI Office of Occupational Health and Safety (OHS).

(3)  Volunteer exposure information will be captured by the respective organization and reported to the USGS Safety and Environmental Management Branch, which will be responsible for entering subject data in SMIS.

(4)  The USGS Safety and Environmental Management Branch will also be responsible for entering emergency firefighter hours, contractor hours, and vehicle mileage information in SMIS as appropriate.

F.  Serious Accident Reporting Requirements.

(1)  Serious accidents, as defined in Appendix 7-1 of this Handbook, must be reported in the same manner as accidents/incidents in general (described in Sections 7.3A, B, and C above). Additional requirements are identified in Sections 7.3F(3) below.

(2)  Definitions.

(a)  Preliminary Notice. A written notice of a serious accident sent to the Departmental DASHO by the USGS as a follow-up to the initial telecommunications notification. The Preliminary Notice is forwarded within 48 hours of the accident and should contain only basic facts that are intended for information-sharing purposes only.

(b)  Factual Report. A written report by the SAIT or TI to the USGS Director and Departmental DASHO completed within 45 calendar days of an accident.  The Factual Report contains only the basic facts related to the serious accident without any inferences, conclusions, or recommendations. Copies of the Factual Report or factual information gleaned from the report may be distributed to other bureaus and agencies by OHS.

(c)  Management Report. A written report by the SAIT or TI to the USGS Director and Departmental DASHO completed within 45 calendar days of an accident. The Management Report not only contains all of the basic facts that are contained in the Factual Report but also contains the results of the investigation; e.g., the SAIT or TI opinions as to why management-control systems did not prevent the accident (if applicable) and recommendations for preventing similar accidents.

(3)  A serious accident involving an employee fatality and/or the hospitalization of three or more personnel will be reported to the U.S. Department of Labor OSHA Area Office having jurisdiction over the accident site by telephone by the local organizational manager (Science Center Director, Office/Team Chief) of the organization incurring the accident.

(a)  This telephone report must be made within 8 hours of the accident occurrence as required by 29 CFR 1960.70. Each report will include the following information: establishment name, location of accident, time of the accident, number of fatalities or hospitalized personnel, contact person, phone number, and brief accident description.

(b)  If the report cannot be made during OSHA regular business hours, Monday through Friday, then the report can be made through the OSHA telephone hotline at 1-800-321-6742.

(4)  The Bureau DASHO, Bureau Safety Manager, and the Director, OHS, will be informed of a serious accident as soon as possible through established reporting procedures for serious accidents.  The OHS Director will notify the Departmental DASHO and others as appropriate.  This applies to all serious accidents.  The DOI Watch Office can be contacted through the telephone hotline at 1-877-246-1373, on a 24-hour daily basis.

(5)  At the direction of the Bureau DASHO, the Bureau Safety Manager will provide a written Preliminary Notice to the Departmental DASHO with a copy to OHS within 48 hours of the accident. If the serious accident involves an employee fatality and/or three or more personnel hospitalized, the Preliminary Notice will include information provided to OSHA as described in Section 7.3F(3) above.

(6)  A SMIS Accident/Incident Report will be entered in SMIS by the local organizational manager (Science Center Director or Office/Team Chief) of the organization incurring the accident in accordance with Section 3.A(1) above. Following completion of the serious accident investigation Factual Report and Management Report, the Bureau Safety and Environmental Management Branch will update the SMIS Accident/Incident Report to reflect the investigation’s findings and recommendations, as accepted by the USGS Director and/or Bureau DASHO.

G.   Special Accident Reports. In addition to Departmental or USGS accident reporting requirements, certain accidents require additional reporting as follows:

(1)  Aircraft Accident Reports.  The OAS Aviation Safety Office will coordinate the investigation of Departmental or USGS aircraft accidents/incidents with the National Transportation Safety Board. Incidents with potential for causing an aviation mishap will be identified, investigated, and documented as appropriate by the OAS Aviation Safety Office (see 352 DM 6 for additional information). This does not eliminate the requirement for the USGS to submit a SMIS Accident/Incident Report.

(2)  Aviation Mishap Information System (AMIS) Reports. The AMIS is an electronic data (files) storage based system encompassing all aspects of aviation mishap reporting within the Department. Categories of reports include aircraft mishaps, aviation hazards, aircraft maintenance deficiencies, and airspace intrusions. The system uses Form OAS-34 SAFECOM to report any condition, observance, act, maintenance problem, or circumstance having potential to cause an aviation-related mishap. Submitting Form OAS-34 SAFCOM is not a substitute for “on-the-spot” correction(s) to a safety concern, rather it is a tool used in the documentation, tracking, and follow-up corrective action(s) related to a safety issue (see 352 DM 1 for additional information).

(3)  Boat or Vessel Accident Reports. If a Departmental or USGS vessel (including vessels under contract and vessels permitted to operate on U.S. or territorial waters) is involved, a Boating Accident Report, U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) Form 3865, will be completed by the local organizational manager (Science Center Director or Office/Team Chief) of the organization incurring the accident whenever an accident occurs in U.S. or territorial waters and results in the loss of life, injury causing incapacitation in excess of 72 hours, or property damage in excess of $500 (see 33 CFR Part 173.55, Report of Casualty or Accident).

(4)  GSA Motor-Vehicle Accident Reports. Operator’s Report of Motor Vehicle Accident, Standard Form (SF) - 91, and Statement of Witness, SF-94, (if applicable), will be prepared and forwarded by the local organizational manager (Science Center Director or Office/Team Chief) of the organization incurring (to the GSA safety office serving as the fleet manager) when a GSA motor vehicle is involved in a Departmental or USGS accident. Forms SF-91 and SF-94 are also required if the vehicle is USGS-owned, leased, or rented, and involves public injury or damage.

(5)  Wildland and Prescribed Fire-Related Shelter Deployments and Entrapments. The initial report of shelter deployments and/or entrapments will be made in accordance with instructions listed in National Fire Equipment System (NFES) Form 0869. The final reports, which are completed at the local level, will be forwarded to the National Interagency Fire Center for review, data collection, and dissemination.

H.  Annual Accident Summary and Reports.

(1)  As stated in Section 7.3E above, the compendium of USGS SMIS Accident/Incident Reports located in SMIS constitutes the equivalent of the OSHA Form 300, “Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses.” Copies can be retrieved from SMIS to meet OSHA recordkeeping requirements.

(2)  An original OSHA Form 300, OSHA Form 300A, and other supplementary records will be maintained at each USGS establishment. In situations where, for reasons of efficient administration or practicality, the USGS must maintain these records at a place other than at each establishment, a copy of the records will be made available at each establishment under the control of the local Collateral Duty Safety Program Coordinator. “Facts Only” may be released from an SMIS Accident/Incident Report in accordance with Privacy Act and Freedom of Information Act requirements.

(3)  USGS individuals with Safety and Occupational Health Program responsibilities can obtain SMIS-generated Departmental and USGS special reports on occupational injuries, illnesses, accidents, and incidents, such as SMIS Accident/Incident Report compendiums, and reports describing indicators such as OWCP costs and injury/illness lost time rate (see 29 CFR 1960.26(a)(1) and 20 CFR 10.12). To obtain authorized access to your organization’s data, contact the USGS Safety and Environmental Management Branch.

(4)  A copy of OSHA Form 300 for an establishment will be posted not later than February 15 after the close of the previous calendar year and remain posted until April 30 or, otherwise, disseminated in writing to all personnel of that establishment.

(5)  Copies of OSHA Form 300 will be posted in a conspicuous place(s) where notices to personnel are customarily posted. In situations where establishment activities are physically dispersed, the notice may be posted at the location to which personnel report each day. If personnel do not primarily work at or report to a single location, the notice may be posted at the location from which personnel operate to carry out their activities. USGS organizations should take appropriate steps to prevent the summary report from being altered, defaced, or covered by other material.

I.  Retention of Records. Records are to be retained in accordance with applicable OSHA regulations and general record schedules published by the National Archives and Records Administration.

(1)  Employee occupational injury/illness information will be retained on site by the USGS for at least 5 fiscal years following the year of occurrence.

(2)  Occupational injury/illness records will be retained as part of the employee’s medical record in the SF-66D, employee medical folder. This folder is an official extension of the official personnel file system.

(3)  Accident reports will be retained by the appropriate USGS Safety and Environmental Management Branch, the designated Office of Record. Accident information entered and maintained in SMIS meets the intent of this requirement.

J.  Accident Reviews.

(1)  The USGS has established appropriate procedures for review of accidents. For individual accidents, this will include second level management and/or safety management review of the SMIS Accident/Incident Reports as they are entered in SMIS. The USGS Safety and Environmental Management Branch will conduct an annual review and resulting trend analysis of organization-wide accident information.

(2)  The USGS Safety and Environmental Management Branch may establish a Serious Accident Review Board which is an ad hoc group of safety and health professionals convened to conduct periodic review of serious accidents and resulting investigations. The Board will be responsible for developing USGS accident-prevention recommendations for serious accidents and other selected incidents.

/s/ Karen D. Baker                                                                      7/22/08
______________________________________                                ____________
Karen D. Baker                                                                           Date
Associate Director for Administrative Policy and Services


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U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, VA, USA
URL: http://www.usgs.gov/usgs-manual/handbook/hb/445-2-h/ch7.html
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Content Information Contact: wrmiller@usgs.gov
Last modification: 13-Feb-2013@17:07 (kk)