Qualities of a Good Accident Investigation

Successful investigations have certain essential features in common. Every investigator must apply these essentials of good investigation in his/her work, as well as become familiar with them in theory.

1. Promptness:

a. Get to the scene of the accident as soon as possible, before the evidence is disturbed and witnesses have left.

b.Follow clues while they are fresh.

c. list witnesses for later questioning.

2. Thoroughness:

a. Examine aI/ evidence in minute detail.

b. Take nothing for granted.

c. Do not jump to conclusions.

d. Follow every clue to the limits of usefulness.

e. Question all witnesses or persons having knowledge of any phase of the accident.

3. Organization:

a. Conduct a planned investigation.

b. Layout logical procedures tailored to the accident under investigation.

c. Follow each course in a systematic manner.

d. Avoid hasty conclusions that tend to limit the scope of the investigation.

4. Accuracy:

a. Guesses, rumors, half-truths are unacceptable in an accident report.

b. Statements must be verified or subject to verification.

c. Theories are useful only in the absence of facts, and must be well substantiated.

d. All evidence must be recorded accurately.

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