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Section V:

Human Resources


Safety and Benefits


Serious Accident Investigation

Current Effective Date:


Revision History:


Original Effective Date:




The purpose of this policy is to establish protocol to follow in investigation of serious accidents to employees, clients, or visitors of department divisions/facilities/school. This policy does not rescind or override any other department, or division/facility/school policy covering the events, but should be implemented in concert with such existing policies. For the purpose of this policy, serious accident shall be defined as:


  1. All accidents meeting the definition of serious accident shall be formally investigated by the division/facility/school Safety and Health Director.

  2. Each agency shall develop procedures on how Serious Accident Investigations shall be conducted. These procedures shall address, at a minimum:
    1. The persons who shall assist in the investigation.
    2. The authorities and responsibilities of these persons during a serious accident investigation.
    3. The notification of the North Carolina Department of Labor, the North Carolina Office of State Personnel, and the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Safety Program Office within eight (8) hours if the accident results in a fatality or hospitalization of three (3) or more employees.
    4. The process and deadlines for notification of other key personnel.
    5. The information which will be collected.
    6. The development of the Serious Accident Investigation Report.
  3. The division/facility/school Safety and Health Director shall prepare a Serious Accident Investigation Report.
    1. This report shall include, as a minimum:
      1. The actions and/or conditions which caused the accident,
      2. The prevalent facts leading up to, during, and following the accident,
      3. The efficiency of the division/facility/school in responding to the accident,
      4. Recommendations to prevent future occurrences of this type of accident to improve the division/facility/school emergency response actions, and
      5. Property damage dollar value.
    2. A copy of this report shall be submitted to:
      1. The division/facility/school director,
      2. The DHHS Safety Program Office, and
      3. Other persons identified by the division/facility/school director.


Each division/facility/school shall develop specific operating procedures to implement this policy.

For questions or clarification on any of the information contained in this policy, please contact Human Resources. For general questions about department-wide policies and procedures, contact the DHHS Policy Coordinator.

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