NETHERLANDS: Labour inspectorate wants companies to learn more from accidents

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The number of accidents at work has been increasing for years and the SZW inspectorate wants to do something about it. It is therefore working on a new approach that involves inviting employers to map the circumstances of an accident where the victim has suffered only minor injuries themselves and to develop a plan for improving safety.

The company could, for example, investigate what went wrong, what could be prevented and how to ensure that the accident does not happen again. The resulting points for improvement should be sorted out by the employer. While this takes time for companies, it also benefits them as they improve safety according to a plan approved by the Inspectorate and avoid a fine. An inspector may also decide to inspect the workplace instead of investigating the accident. Companies can still be fined if a new inspection shows that no progress has been made.

Initial research results show the effectiveness of these new forms of intervention in tackling both the direct cause of the workplace accident and the underlying factors.

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