The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has commenced a consultation in relation to the changes proposed by Lord Young in his report, Common Sense, Common Safety, which was published on 15 October 2010. In his report, Lord Young recommended that regulation 3(2) of the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrence Regulations 1995 (RIDDOR) be amended so that the current obligation to report to the enforcing authority when an employee has been absent from work for three days following an accident or injury at work, is changed to a period of seven days. This would coincide with the requirement for individuals to obtain a fit note from their GP if their absence is expected to last more than a week, ensuring that a person who has suffered a reportable injury has had a professional medical assessment. This will significantly reduce the number of reports employers have to make. If the proposed change is agreed, regulation 7 would also need to be amended in order to ensure that the existing requirement on the responsible person to record injuries which lead to over three day absences from work is maintained.

The HSE seeks views on the proposal itself and on the impact that it would have if it became law. The deadline for responding is 9 May 2011. Following the consultation, the HSE will make a recommendation to the Secretary of State on the best way forward. The consultation document can be found here.