This unit describes the skills and knowledge required to plan, conduct and report on investigations of work health and safety (WHS) incidents that have resulted in, or have the potential to result in, injury or damage.

It covers conducting an initial assessment of the situation; establishing the scope and legal parameters of the investigation; conducting a systematic analysis to identify underlying causes and actions for prevention; and reporting on the outcomes of the investigation appropriate to the potential severity of the incident, which may include accessing specialist expertise.

This unit applies to individuals required to investigate incidents in relation to prevention of future incidents.

The unit applies to people who work in a range of WHS roles across all industries and who apply a substantial knowledge base and well-developed skills in a wide variety of WHS contexts.


  1. Ensure initial responses to the incident are carried out according to requirements
  2. Develop an investigation plan
  3. Collect information and data
  4. Analyse information and data gathered to identify immediate and underlying causes and practical prevention measures
  5. Compile and communicate investigation report

Upon successful completion of this unit, you will:

  • prepare and implement an initial response to an incident that complies with legislative and organisational requirements and considers the safety and security of individuals and the site
  • systematically develop and document a plan to investigate an incident
  • collect, document and analyse data and information relevant to an incident investigation ensuring that all individuals in the investigation team understand and follow required processes
  • prepare and communicate an investigation report in required format that identifies the events leading up to the incident, immediate and underlying causes, points at which the incident could have been prevented and recommendations arising from the investigation

Demonstrate knowledge of:

  • ethics related to conducting an investigation
  • the characteristics and composition of the workforce impacting on the investigation of work health and safety (WHS) incidents, including:
    • cultural background
    • workplace diversity
    • gender
    • language, literacy and numeracy levels
    • organisational structure, including employment status, shifts and geographical location
  • internal and external sources of information and data relevant to investigations
  • organisational WHS policies, procedures, processes and systems relevant to work role
  • requirements under WHS legislation for notifying and reporting incidents and enforcement notices, and rights and powers of WHS inspectors
  • types and characteristics of incidents including causes and incident management processes

Nominal Hours: 50