Safety Consultant
Raghuvaran Chakkaravarthy
Environmental, Health And Safety
Kesava Pillai
Occupational Safety & Health
Hr Executive
Working With Ngo
[email protected]
Industrial Hse Professional
+2 Others

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Many SHO too often discharge their responsibility in cases of accident.As a practioner I humbly acknowledged that we have a significant part of responsibility. we should as failures from different areas.Be it as advisor or trainer ,trainer.
From Mauritius, Vacoas
Dear Sir
What you mean by SHO... Is that Safety Health Officer?...
Also please make it clear what was your aim behind starting this thread?... Just to remind about the role of a Safety Pro or anything else?...

From India
Hi Dipil
Sorry for having not been clear.In fact, I wanted just to add on an existing threat whereby some friends were question the role and responsiblities of safety and health officers/practioners in cases of accidents......Too often SHO try to discharge themselve arguing that its the responsibility on floor managers etc.....
However i would much appreciate to get your reflection on this issue
u may contact me on

From Mauritius, Vacoas
Role of SHO is that of advisory. His responsibility is to help management develop systems to prevent accidents, review- update- evaluate the system, analyze data on accidents and present the results before the mgmt for improvement, help generate awareness through various media/methods among ALL sections, prepare budget and get it sanctioned and then use the available funds meticulously and so on.
Accident taking place indicates some failure some where for which SHO can not be held responsible. Accidents happen when there are more than one failures. SHO's job is to locate ALL failures and improve up on ALL identified lacunae

From India, Coimbatore
Dear All
In my organization when comes to Incident & Incident Investigation Process, a Safety Pro is having the following role only:
1. Support and advise the line manager with incident investigation, including classification and to provide medical assistance.
2. Custodian of the incident information retained in the Incident Investigation Report and ensures that the data is validated. Ensure legal compliance and report incidents to regulatory authorities.
Just would like to know the comments of all on this account...
A Safety Pro suppose to do any additional function in case an incident than mentioned above?

From India
Thanks for your reflections.
You will appreciate that failure to make proper risk assessment,hazards analysis and accident investigation which are inter alias the attributions of SHOs may perpetuate hazardous conditions at workplace .In this respect i feel that SHO should bear the responsibility.
However I value equally your points

From Mauritius, Vacoas
Yesterday fire and explosion took place in a factory in Nandesari ind area near Baroda killing one worker. SHO has been arrested by the police along with CEO and others.Do you think SHO has criminal responsibility? I myself was SHSO at a chemical factory and my advise was not accepted or implemented which was very frustrating.Do you think that in such cases SHO should approach the Factory Inspectorate to make complaint against the Management?
From India, Coimbatore
Dear Mr.PTRC,

Since Industrial accidents are covered under Factories act and rules only the State Chief Inspector of Factories is the one authorized to investigate and file a case against the Occupier. However police can arrest the SHO and CEO for willful negligence only causing the accident and its result.

Against an offence two different authorities can not go ahead with the proceedings.

When State Chief Inspector files a case usually the Police case will be dropped.

SHO is having only staff function and not executive functions and as such he is supposed to provide solid recommendation to his reporting officer on his part. If his recommendations are not implemented which results in an accident he is not answerable for the accident. Once this is proved on his side he will be set free.

SHO is an employee of the organization. He is not paid or employed by Factory Inspectorate. All the correspondence to inspectorate is done by the Factory Manager or occupier. Again inspectorate is not dealing with the SHO directly. Under these conditions SHO is not supposed to report anything directly to inspectorate with out instructions from his reporting officer. However when time comes and asked for with the permission of reporting officer he may be directed to produce documents such as his recommendations.

SHO or any employee making a complaint against an organization is called “whistle blower” which is legal in USA. Whistle blowers are well protected by OSHA there whereas in India it will be treated as a serious misconduct for which one can even be terminated.

However I will be thankful if you can give more information about the reported accident please.


Kesava Pillai

From India, Kollam
@PTRC & Keshav Pillai
Thanks for the updates...
Before this I have heard about two incidents where the SHO is arrested...
One question: Chief Inspector can visit the accident spot any time within 30 days of accident. During his visit, if he found any abnormalities, specialy unsafe conditions, then only he will proceed in filing a case or not?

From India
Dear Kesava sir ,
As per my experience S.O. always giving recommendations for safety of workplace as per his knowledge level ( Competency ) . sometimes I found that small/medium industries not sent them(s.o) for external training or taking advise of external experts on critical issues also due to cost factor in that case how it is logical to make responsible to safety officer for an accident . Do you think that Human Resource & Development dept.is also responsible for allowing to employ less competent person ? . I have worked with some small/medium scale industries where safety officer used to verbal communication only in such cases how s.o. will able to give proof of his recommendation . Kindly guide.

From India, Mumbai

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