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Serious Injury Fact Sheet

Understanding and Reporting Serious Injuries

The Workers Compensation Act regulates that WorkSafeBC must be notified in the case of a worker’s death or a serious injury as well as immediate notification of a major failure or collapse of a structure, equipment, construction support system or excavation, a major release of a hazardous material or other serious mishaps, such as multiple employees requiring first aid treatment.

WorkSafeBC defines a Serious Injury as:

Any injury that can reasonably be expected at the time of the incident to endanger life or cause permanent injury. Serious injuries include both traumatic injuries that are life threatening or that result in a loss of consciousness, and incidents such as chemical exposures, heat stress and cold stress which are likely to result in a life-threatening condition or cause permanent injury or significant physical impairment.

Injuries that require a critical intervention such as CPR, artificial ventilation or control of hemorrhaging or treatment beyond First Aid, such as the intervention of Emergency Health Services personnel (e.g. transportation to further medical attention), a physician and subsequent surgery or admittance to an intensive care unit are also considered “serious injuries.”

WorkSafeBC requires that all serious incidents and accidents be immediately reported and investigated to ensure a WorkSafeBC prevention officer can respond in order to:  

  • Attend at the scene to conduct an investigation of the incident and ensure the integrity of the scene
  • Offer availability of counseling services, as appropriate
  • Undertake an inspection of the workplace to help ensure that workers are protected before work is resumed
  • Help ensure that any post-incident response or cleanup is performed in a safe manner
  • Provide a referral to compensation services

Scroll down to download the Serious Injury Fact Sheet that provides the WorkSafeBC definition of a Serious Injury and what to do in case an incident occurs.

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