Nursery accidents and incident policy

Updated on 19 October 2022

How the University Nursery records and reports accidents and incidents to children, staff, volunteers or other adults.

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At The University of Dundee Nursery Ltd we aim to always protect children. We recognise that accidents or incidents may sometimes occur. We follow this policy and procedure to ensure that all parties are supported and cared for when accidents or incidents happen; and that the circumstances of the accident or incident are reviewed with a view to minimising any future risks.

The Nursery keeps records of illnesses, accidents, and injuries, together with an account of any first aid treatment, non‐prescription medication or treatment given to a child.

Location of accident/incidents files: Office – DUSA building and in each room in Airlie Place Building

Child protection matters or behavioural incidents between children are not regarded as incidents for this purpose and there are separate procedures for these below.

Accident and incident procedures

What is the difference between an accident and an incident?

An accident is an unfortunate event or occurrence that happens unexpectedly and unintentionally, typically resulting in an injury, for example tripping over and hurting your knee – no other person involved.

An incident is an event or occurrence that is related to another person, typically resulting in an injury, for example being pushed over and hurting your knee.

Dealing with accidents or incidents to children

We keep written records of all accidents, incidents, or injuries to a child together with any first aid treatment given. Any event is recorded by completion of an “Accident/ Incident Form”, the procedure is the same for both types (major accident and incident) of events as follows:

  • An Accident/ Incident Report is completed by the member of staff who witnessed the event. If non-qualified staff member is witnessing an accident/incident than a fully qualified member of staff must supervise non-qualified staff member completing form.  
  • Accident/Incident Form should be completed as soon as possible and given to parents when collecting their child on the same time. If for any reason form is not completed parents/carers must be informed and form need to be given the day after.
  • If child had a head injury or any other type of injury which required to be check with GP – Parents must be contacted by Room Senor via phone as soon as possible.
  • A Summary Index of Accident / Incident forms is completed monthly by the Junior Nursery Manager/Senior Nursery Manger or Room Senior if both previous not present.
  • The Summary Index includes the child’s name, child’s date of birth, the date of the accident or incident, details of the accident or incident – only child was injured by another child or child causing injury to another child.

Accident and incident recording and reporting policy

The following information is recorded on the Accident/ Incident Report:

  • Full name of child
  • Child’s date of birth
  • Date of accident or incident
  • Time of accident or incident
  • Name and signature of person who dealt with the accident or incident
  • Name of all staff present at time of incident
  • Description of accident or incident
  • Description of care given
  • Name of person who gave care (this must be a Paediatric First Aid qualified member of staff)
  • Description of injury (if applicable)
  • Position of the injury illustrated on the body map
  • Witness signature (only if witnessed)
  • Signature of parent or carer
  • Location of accident or incident – please specify as much as possible.

It is then that member of staff’s responsibility to ensure that the parent or carer is informed about the accident or incident and that the report is signed by parent or carer on the day that the accident occurred. (The name of any other child involved in an accident or incident must remain confidential).

In the event of an Accident/ Incident Report not being signed by a parent or carer on the same day, the member of staff in charge of the room or any other fully qualified member of staff present must deal with the report. The staff member in charge of the session room then has the overall responsibility to immediately inform the parent or carer by telephone of the accident or incident, making a note of the time and date of the call on the Accident/ Incident Form. The member of staff / Room Senior must then ensure that the Accident/ Incident Report is signed by the parent or carer at the next possible opportunity.

It is the responsibility of all members of staff present in room to check that all Accident/ Incident Reports have been accurately completed, signed appropriately on the day, and then filed.

The Summary Index is filed in the Accident/ Incident form folder. The information contained in the Summary Index enables relevant Accident/ Incident Reports to be quickly sourced by cross referencing the index number, date, and child’s name. This process aids us to:

  • Review how many accidents or incidents happen per month.
  • What types of accidents or incidents occur?
  • Identify any potential or actual hazards.
  • Identify any patterns in children having a higher rate of accidents or incidents.

We regularly review the Accident/ Incident Form to ensure that any issues are addressed.

Dealing with accidents to children that are not witnessed

The above procedure applies but with the following change:

If the accident, incident, or injury has not been witnessed by a member of staff or other adult, then the member of staff dealing with the accident must gain an account of what happened from the child, and any other children, if they are able to verbalise this or communicate in any other way. The member of staff must record the child’s account of events on the Accident/ Incident form and clearly state that the accident was not witnessed.

Dealing with home accidents or incidents to children

An “Accident or Incident at home” is an accident or incident that happened outside the setting that has caused any injury or the seeking of medical advice.

An Accident/ Incident at home form is completed by the parent or carer each time they notify a member of staff about an accident or incident which has not happened at nursery. The report is signed by the parent or carer and countersigned by a qualified practitioner and one of management team.

Dealing with injuries to children not notified by the parent

Injuries that have not been notified to the setting by the parent or carer and that have not happened in the setting, the above procedure applies but with the following change:

If we have not been informed of a prior accident or incident by a parent or carer and an injury is noticed during a session, the parent or carer will be notified by a member of staff when they collect their child from the setting. The parent or carer will be asked to complete and sign an Accident/ Incident Report by the member of staff who handed the child over.

If an injury is noticed on an unusual place of a child's body, then the Room Senior will report it immediately to a member of the Management Team

Dealing with mishap have happened at nursery

Any mishap that happened in setting that does not cause any physical injury and are confirmed by child that they are feeling fine and are happy return to play with friends does not require to be recorded in Accident/Incident Form, however parents/carer must be still made aware of that even on the same day and record must be completed on children’s registration – next to the child name.

Dealing with accidents to staff, volunteers or other adults

We keep written records of all accidents or injuries to staff, volunteers, or other adults together with any first aid treatment given.

Reporting of accidents or illness

We report the following:

  • The Care Inspectorate is notified as soon as possible, but at least within 24hours, of any instances which involve:
  • food poisoning affecting two or more children looked after on our premises.
  • a serious accident or injury to, or serious illness of a child in our care and the action we take in response; and
  • the death of a child in our care.
  • Local child protection agencies are informed of any serious accident, illness or injury to, or the death of any child while in our care and we act on any advice given by those agencies.
  • The local Environmental Health Department is informed of any food poisoning affecting two or more children or adults on our premises.
  • We meet our legal requirements in respect of the safety of our employee and the public by complying with RIDDOR. We report to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
  • If an incident occurs before any children arrive, we risk assess this situation and decide if the premises are safe to receive children. We may decide to offer a limited service or to close the setting.
  • Where an incident occurs whilst the children are in our care and it is necessary to evacuate the premises, we follow the procedures in our Emergency Evacuation Procedure.



Contact Number

Care Inspectorate 

0345 600 9527

Local child protection team

01382 307999 (24 hr)

Health and Safety Executive

01312472121 or 02124252525

Local authority environmental health department

01382 436894

RIDDOR report form



Transporting children to hospital procedure

The nursery manager/staff member must:

  • Call for an ambulance immediately if the injury is severe. DO NOT attempt to transport the sick child in your own vehicle
  • Whilst waiting for the ambulance, contact the parent(s) and arrange to meet them at the hospital
  • Arrange for the most appropriate member of staff to accompany the child taking with them any relevant information such as registration forms, relevant medication sheets, medication, and the child’s comforter (if applicable).
  • Redeploy staff if necessary to ensure there is adequate staff to care for the remaining children. This may mean temporarily grouping the children together.
  • Inform a member of the management team immediately.
  • Remain calm at all times. Children who witness an incident may well be affected by it and may need lots of cuddles and reassurance. Staff may also require additional support following the accident.

We treat our responsibilities and obligations in respect of health and safety as a priority and we provide ongoing training to all members of staff which reflects best practice and is in line with current health and safety legislation.

Document information

Date policy adopted

7 October 2022

Signed on behalf of the nursery

Jacky Jones Senior Manager

Malgorzata Mazanka Junior Manager

Date for review

7 October 2023



Jacky Jones

Nursery Manager

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