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Incident investigations

If a workplace incident results in an injury, or could have caused a serious injury, both employers and WorkSafeBC have certain responsibilities. Incident investigations help identify the cause and hazards, while finding ways to prevent similar incidents from happening in the future.

Two different investigations may take place after an incident occurs: one that the employer conducts and one that WorkSafeBC conducts.

Employer investigations

  • Employers are responsible for conducting investigations related to incidents that happen in their workplaces and submitting employer incident investigation reports (EIIRs) to WorkSafeBC.
  • Depending on the incident and how serious it is, employers may also need to immediately report the incident to WorkSafeBC.
  • Employers are responsible for completing reports to represent the four stages of an investigation: preliminary investigation, interim corrective actions, full investigation, and full corrective actions.

WorkSafeBC investigations

  • Following an incident or near miss (an incident that almost happened), a WorkSafeBC investigation may be conducted to identify the cause and explore other related factors.
  • The investigation process is also used to determine if enforcement action, such as imposing an administrative penalty or proceeding to prosecution, is appropriate.
  • Findings from WorkSafeBC investigation reports are posted online. These are intended to help employers and workers understand the factors that contribute to workplace incidents so similar incidents can be prevented in the future.