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Template for submission of incidents for use in safety flashes

IMCA has produced a handy template for members to use in submitting incidents to the secretariat for inclusion in a safety flash. Use of this template is not mandatory, of course, but it is hoped that it will make the submission of incidents easier for safety professionals and others tasked with submitting incidents to IMCA. The template is attached to this information note as a Word document and can be downloaded from

IMCA safety flashes and systems for incident reporting and analysis are an important tool for sharing vital information. By publishing them, IMCA helps its members around the world identify potential hazards; share lessons learnt and avoid repetition. Any member can submit material to [email protected] or if preferred, direct to Nicholas Hough. All submissions are handled in the strictest confidence, with information anonymised, checked before issue and published only with clear permission from the originator. Safety flashes should be succinct, specific, factually correct and written in clear language.


  • The following pointers will assist members in the development of safety flashes:
    • The title should be concise and focus on the main issue
    • The focus should be on lessons learnt and how to prevent a recurrence, rather than on the incident itself
    • The content should be succinct, specific and, as far as possible, a common theme or pattern should be followed:
      • What happened: an incident or an issue will be described
      • Why: what were the immediate causes and, if appropriate, the root causes
      • Learning: what can members learn from this
      • Action: what are the recommendations for members
    • Ideally there should be photographs or illustrations.
  • A safety flash incident report should provide sufficient detail and communicate risks, precautions and necessary actions effectively without releasing information about the people or organisations involved;
  • Members should be reassured that the secretariat will continue to assist with formatting and checking of submitted incidents, and that the process for ratification and agreement of a submitted incident remains unchanged – that is, nothing is published until the originator signals clearly that the incident is OK to be published;
  • IMCA remains aware that it is sometimes necessary for members to take legal advice before sharing incident information, and we would stress that published safety flashes are always completely anonymous. IMCA does encourage members to continue to share information about incidents, hazards and lessons learnt, as far as is reasonably practical.
IMCA Contact

Nicholas Hough
Technical Adviser - HSSE and Offshore Survey

Information Note Details

Published date: 14 July 2014
Information note ID: 1227


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IMCA makes every effort to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the data contained in the documents it publishes, but IMCA shall not be liable for any guidance and/or recommendation and/or statement herein contained. The information contained in this document does not fulfil or replace any individual’s or Member's legal, regulatory or other duties or obligations in respect of their operations. Individuals and Members remain solely responsible for the safe, lawful and proper conduct of their operations.