July 22, 2020 | Barb Carr

3 Elements of a Great Incident Investigation Report

Including all the essential elements of an incident investigation report is important to getting corrective actions implemented so the incident doesn’t occur again. Here are three elements of a great investigation report.

  1. Start with a simple statement about what the report is about, the consequences of the incident, and what you hoped to achieve by writing it. “We investigated a hazardous spray incident at our Denver plant to determine root causes. Two workers sustained second degree burns to their hands and faces. By addressing the root causes, we can prevent future similar and related incidents from happening.”
  2. Stay out of the weeds. Don’t provide so much detail about the incident that management can’t see what happened or see how you propose to fix the problem is relevant. Provide a timeline of events that lead to the incident that includes images. Sometimes pictures tell a better story than a block of text.
  3. Don’t rush to the finish. After a long investigation, it’s tempting to slap some corrective actions together and call it a day. However, the point of the investigation is to fix the root causes found, so ensure that you are spending an adequate amount of time developing fixes for them, and not just fixing the problems that occurred without attention to the underlying root causes.

Create a Meaningful Report that Covers all the Elements

If you use TapRooT® Software, you can provide consistency in how your investigations are reported. We have a webinar designed to get you started on the right foot. Attendees will come away with the knowledge and skills required to not only create meaningful reports using the TapRooT® VI software but also effectively develop a useful data collection process.

Join us for a TapRooT® Software Webinar>>

Investigations, Software
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