Course 162 Accident Investigation: Basic

Safety guides and audits to make your job as a safety professional easier
Course 162 Certificate
Frame not included.
Modules: 2
Hours: 1
Sectors: All Industries

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Course 162 Accident Investigation: Basic

Key Topics

  • Purpose of the Accident Investigation
  • Initiating the Investigation
  • Documenting the Accident Scene
  • Conducting Interviews
  • Conducting Event Analysis
  • Determining Surface and Root Causes
  • Developing Recommendations
  • Writing the Accident Report
  • Selling Management on Recommendations

Target Audience

  • Employees
  • Supervisors

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


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Accident investigation is fact-finding, not fault-finding.

Workplace accidents occur each and every day all around the world. Accident investigations determine how safety management system weaknesses create hazardous conditions and unsafe behaviors, and develops solutions to prevent similar accidents from occurring. By using the information gained through an investigation, a similar or perhaps more disastrous accident may be prevented. We should always conduct accident investigations with accident prevention in mind rather than establishing blame.

The Challenge

The challenge to any accident investigator is to report the findings in a well-thought-out manner to ensure management will ultimately adopt recommendations for improving its safety management system, thus solving problems long-term. It's a common struggle trying to overcome long-held perceptions about safety and how accidents occur.

This course introduces you to basic accident investigation procedures that have proven effective. We will also take a look at various accident analysis techniques.

Modules and Learning Objectives

Click on the links below to access the modules. You can also click on the links at the top of the page.

Module 1 - Gathering the Facts

Learning objectives in this module include:

  • Discuss the concept of "accident investigation."
  • Identify OSHA accident reporting requirements.
  • List and describe at least five types of accidents, and those that are most common.
  • Identify the basic elements of an effective accident investigation program.
  • Describe the best practices for securing and documenting an accident scene.
  • Describe important considerations for interviewing witnesses.
  • Define "actor" and "action," and give an example of each in an event.
  • Describe the process of developing a sequence of events leading up to the accident event.

Module 2 - Analyzing the Facts

Learning objectives in this module include:

  • Define "analysis" and give an example of a simple analysis process.
  • Identify and describe the three primary phases of accident investigation cause analysis.
  • Define "surface cause" and "root cause," and give examples of each.
  • Describe possible short-term corrective actions that can be taken to correct surface causes.
  • Describe possible long-term system improvements to correct safety management system weaknesses.
  • Describe the five strategies, in order of priority, within the "Hierarchy of Controls."
  • Discuss how to best "sell" management on the recommendations given as a result of the investigation.
  • List and describe each of the five sections of the accident report.

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Course 162 Final Exam

Exam score sheet

After studying the course material and answering the quiz questions, it is time to take the final exam. We highly recommend answering the module quiz questions to check your understanding of the course material. The final exam questions are typically developed from these quiz questions.

OSHAcademy course final exams are designed to make sure students have gained a sufficient understanding of the content covered within each course. To help demonstrate this understanding, students must achieve a passing score on course final exams. It is OSHAcademy's policy to protect the integrity of our exams: as a result, we do not provide missed questions to students.

This is an open book exam. Students are permitted to use a separate browser window to review course content while taking the exam. If you do not pass a final exam, you will see a "Retake Exam" button next to the course on your student dashboard.

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