The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) has opened a 12-week consultation on proposals to simplify and clarify the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR).
The proposed changes will remove the duty to report in cases where the information is of little use or better collected through other means, which will be outlined in the new guidelines.
The proposals include self-employed people no longer having to report injuries or illness to themselves, and the removal of both the duty on employers to report dangerous occurrences outside of high-risk sectors/activities and requirements to report most occupational diseases.
The need to report all fatal injuries to workers and those to members of the public as a result of a work activity would remain, as would the duty to report major injuries to workers.
David Charnock, HSE's consultation manager, said: "We are proposing to simplify the requirements by removing the duty to report in those areas where the information can be better obtained from other sources or where the data isn't particularly useful to the regulators.
The proposals do not indicate any change in HSE's policy or strategic objectives, and we will continue to focus our investigations on those incidents that meet our published selection criteria.
The proposal is in response to a report recommendation that ambiguity over reporting requirements should be removed.
The Common Sense, Common Safety Government report published in October 2010 also recommended a re-examination of RIDDOR to determine whether it was the best approach to providing an accurate national picture of workplace accidents.
The consultation is open until 28 October 2012. The full document can be found at http://www.hse.gov.uk/consult/condocs/cd243.htm.
The consultation on wider changes to RIDDOR follows injury reporting changes which took effect in April. Employers now have to report injuries that keep workers off normal duties for seven or more days, rather than three or more days.