What is a Management System?
An Environmental, Health, and Safety (EHS) Management System (MS) refers to a comprehensive business management system designed to manage EHS elements in the workplace. There are many elements associated with an effective EHS Management System, for example, the main building blocks associated with an effective MS include but are not limited to Hazard Prevention and Control, Information and Training, Hazard Identification and Assessment, Employee Participation and Management Leadership. Incident Management is part of Management Leadership responsibilities.
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EHS Incident Management System
A proper Incident Management System includes the following elements:
- Incident Identification and Investigation including Root Cause Analysis
- Incident Recording and Categorization
- Incident Prioritization
- Escalation as Necessary
- Incident Resolution and Closure (Lessons Learned Application including Comprehensive Analysis of all incidents for trend Analysis)
- Communication within the organization and sometimes outside the organization
Let’s take a brief look at each of the above Critical Incident Management elements listed above.
Incident Identification and Investigation
The first step when an incident occurs is secure the area if necessary. Initiate the investigation per your procedure using the Subject Matter Expert (SME) and/or other qualified person(s). The severity or type of the incident being investigated will determine the investigation team make-up. Identifying contributing factors and the root cause of the incident is a very important aspect when considering future incident prevention. Remember Incident Investigation is “Fact Finding, not Fault Finding”!
Incident Recording and Categorization
It is important to record all incidents including Near Misses, First Aid Cases, and Recordable cases. Note: Environmental incidents are also included. Categorization of incidents is helpful when determining trends and developing corrective actions. When incidents are categorized, patterns emerge.
Incident priority is determined by the potential or actual impact (financial, interruption) on the business or employees.
Escalation as Necessary
This happens when an Environmental, Health or Safety related incident requires additional resources or support to mitigate or investigate the incident. This may include any emergency responder personnel, the evacuation of a lab or building, any environmental release requiring regulatory reporting, and/or the notification of any EHS issue to executive management.
Incident Resolution and Closure
It is important to track resolution and closure of an incident in order to ensure that similar incidents do not occur in the future. Confirmation of resolution and closure of all contributing factors must be confirmed.
Communication in and Outside the Organization
It is important to provide a timely report of incidents to upper management to ensure knowledge and that appropriate resources are available for preventive actions. Additionally, a clear and detailed incident report shall be available for all serious incidents. A serious incident may require legal and professional review prior to issuing.
Find an Incident Management Software Solution
The following Gensuite applications can be utilized to enhance your Incident Management process:
- The Gensuite Incident Management software application allows users to report and track safety and environmental incidents from occurrence to resolution with the following tools, making the Incident Management process seamless:
- Incident & injury reporting
- Incident investigation, root cause analysis and corrective & preventive action
- Share incident learning enterprise-wide
- Robust reporting, charting and insights
- The Gensuite Data Analytics EHS software application allows users to analyze workplace metrics to ensure safety. Using this application in conjunction with the previous application can ensure your workplace will be an EHS leader. Check out more of these high-level tools:
- Key Performance Indicator reporting
- Personalized application dashboard and automated email subscriptions
- EHS data visualization
In final analysis, proper Incident Management software will enhance your EHS process and minimize major business interruptions, and most importantly, minimize risks to one of your most important resources — employees.