Health and safety incident reporting on Ministry-led construction projects

Overview and key information for reporting and monitoring health and safety risks on Ministry-led construction projects

Level of compliance Main audience Other


  • Project managers
  • Main site contractors
  • Principals and tumuaki
  • Boards

As a construction client, the Ministry encourages good health and safety practices across school property projects through active contractor management, together with consultation and communication. We appreciate everyone’s cooperation to ensure that Ministry of Education construction projects are safe places to work.

Accurate and timely incident reporting is a critical part of monitoring health and safety risks to identify areas where we can improve health and safety practices. It also helps to improve the way projects are delivered and makes sure everyone has the information they need to help keep safe.

This page outlines the Ministry of Education’s incident reporting requirements on Ministry-led construction projects.

Our reporting requirements

All incidents, accidents and near misses that happen on school building sites must be reported to the Ministry. This applies whether anybody was hurt or not and includes incidents involving:

  • First aid.
  • Medical treatment.
  • Hospitalisation or outpatient treatment.
  • Fatalities.
  • Near miss – any unplanned event or incident that did not result in an injury or loss of any kind but had the potential to harm anybody.

Where no incidents occur during the month, a ‘nil return’ is required.

Some incidents also require notification to Mahi Haumaru Aotearoa | Worksafe New Zealand, such as cases of serious harm or situations where there was potential for serious harm.

Reporting process

Reporting incidents and associated investigations is part of managing health and safety risks to understand why and how things went wrong and identifying solutions and work methods to prevent it happening again.

This is part of the Ministry’s ongoing commitment to support improved health and safety practices, culture and performance in the construction industry. 

Contractors and service providers must provide the Ministry with the following:

  • Details of the incident
    • Name of the school
    • Date and time of the incident
    • Name of the contractor involved in the incident
    • Type of incident (e.g. injury/illness, near miss, property loss, motor vehicle)
    • Injury (body part injured, type of injury, treatment – first aid, hospitalisation, etc)
    • Description of what happened.
  • Underlying causes.
  • What corrective actions or improvements have been taken.

Send the incident reports directly to, and copies sent to the Project Manager and Ministry’s project Delivery Manager.

Monthly Health and Safety Reports for Major Works projects

A Monthly Health and Safety Report is required from each live Major Works site every month. The whole template must be completed, even if all fields have a ‘zero’ value. Note that this process runs in parallel with and does not replace the health and safety reporting that we already receive when an incident happens.

Monthly Health and Safety Report [PDF, 143 KB]

Main Contractors and Project Managers working on live Capital Works projects will receive a copy of the report template from their respective Delivery Managers at the end of each month. This report needs to be completed and returned to the Delivery Manager within the first five working days of the following month.

Reporting timeframes

Incident type Reporting timeframes

Incidents involving serious harm and/or requiring notification to WorkSafe New Zealand | Mahi Haumaru Aotearoa.

Serious harm means death, injury that consists of or includes loss of consciousness, a notifiable injury or illness as defined in section 23 of the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015.

A notifiable incident may be one of the following that exposes a person to a serious and immediate health and safety risk:

  • A substance escaping, spilling or leaking.
  • An implosion, explosion or fire.
  • Escape of gas or steam.
  • Escape of a pressurised substance.
  • Electric shock from anything that could cause a lethal shock (e.g. ‘live’ exposed wires).
  • The fall or release from height of any plant, substance or item.
  • Collapse, overturning, failing or malfunction of, or damage to any plant that is required for authorised use under regulation.
  • The collapse or partial collapse of a structure.
  • The ingress of water, mud or gas in works involving an underground excavation or tunnel.

WorkSafe must be notified when a notifiable event occurs.

Notify – WorkSafe(external link)

Report to the Ministry within 24 hours.

All other incidents, accidents and near misses.

Near miss means any unplanned event or incident that did not result in an injury or loss of any kind but had the potential to harm anybody.

Report to the Ministry within 5 working days of the incident.

No incidents occurred during the month.

Provide the completed Monthly Health and Safety Report to the Ministry within the first 5 working days of the following month.

Contact us


After hours for property incidents

Phone: +64 21 040 1612

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