How to document any incident

Know What To Document

Make sure your organization's policies clearly spell out which incidents should be documented.

Interview All Witnesses

After the incident, question all eyewitnesses.  Use direct, objective questions.  Use these direct quotes in your report.

Avoid Delays

Write your report as soon as possible.  The longer you delay, the more your memory will be clouded by post-incident events.

Be Objective

Report only the facts and avoid hearsay and subjective opinions.  Focus on who, what, where, when, and why.

Organize Chronologically

Put events in time sequence order.  Begin with the events leading up to the incident, follow with the details of the incident itself and close with post-incident events.

Tell the Truth

Avoid the temptation of manufacturing details or events.  This will ultimately lead to inconsistencies down the line.

The above material was provided and copyrighted 1995 by the National Crisis Prevention Institute


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