When you run a sports facility, sports injuries are bound to happen on your premises. If you don’t have an official accident report form that all employees know how to access and use, you are inviting legal troubles and missing out on an easy opportunity to improve client relations.
Formal accident reports show clients that you are professional, organized and take any injury seriously. They are also an efficient way to communicate to parents what happened to their child if they weren’t there to witness the accident.
Err on the side of caution when deciding whether a formal accident report is necessary. Broken skin, bruising, and any visible mark warrants a report. If the athlete complains or is upset about an injury, fill one out. In general, if you think a parent might ask you about the incident later, go ahead and fill one out.
In general, here are some fields to consider including on your accident report, which should be on official company letterhead:
- Date and time of accident
- Name of injured person
- Description of how the injury occurred
- Description of what the athlete was doing at the time of injury
- Description of what part of the body was injured
- Any further information that should be included
- Athlete signature and date
- Trainer signature and date
- Parent signature and date
- Manager signature and date
Make sure to bring this issue up with your lawyer, as well. He or she might have more specific insights into what you should legally include on your accident report.
Finally, make sure that the reports are stored and organized in a secure place; consider keeping electronic backups of the physical copies in case they get lost or destroyed. And remember that your entire sports facility staff staff should be trained on how to react to an injury, no matter how serious the injury is.
If you’d like to consult with me on this issue or other sports facility operations issues, give me a call at (513) 791-4940.