Glossary:Accident at work

From Statistics Explained

An accident at work is a discrete occurrence during the course of work which leads to physical or mental harm. The phrase ’in the course of work’ means whilst engaged in an occupational activity or during the time spent at work. This includes cases of road traffic accidents in the course of work but excludes accidents during the journey between home and the workplace.

The following types of accidents are covered or not, respectively, by the above definition.

  • Cases included:
  • cases of acute poisoning;
  • wilful acts of other persons;
  • accidents that occurred on the premises of an employer other than that which employs the victim; this might include accidents during attendance at meetings or in the course of providing services on the premises of another employer visited for that purpose, during the course of the victim’s work;
  • accidents in public places or public means of transport during a journey in the course of work.
  • Cases excluded:
  • commuting accidents: accidents that occur during the normal journey to or from home and place of work, i.e. road accidents that occur during the journey between the worker’s principal or secondary residence and the workplace, or while picking up children from school; accidents between home and a location attended for work-related training or between the workplace and a restaurant at which an employee habitually has lunch are excluded unless the restaurant is on company (5) premises;
  • deliberate self-inflicted injuries;
  • accidents from strictly natural causes: accidents caused solely by a medical condition, e.g. cardiac or cerebral incidents, or any other sudden-onset medical condition that occurred during work, without any obvious link to the occupational activity of the victim;
  • accidents, purely private: accidents in which the victims are not at their workplace, carrying out activities which are not work-related, for example, visiting a shop, a town hall, bank, station, hospital, post office, port, airport, etc.;
  • accidents to members of the public, even if such an accident is due to a work activity within a company; this includes the family members of an employee or employer if they are on the premises of the company and become victims of an accident, i.e. children in, for example, the nursery in the company; Such accidents should not be counted as accidents at work although responsible employers would ensure that such incidents would normally be factored into insurance cover.

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