Notifiable death - what you must do

If someone dies as a result of work while an aircraft was in operation, then you MUST notify us as soon as possible.

You only need to notify us if the death was related to the work of the business. This could be as a result of:

  • the condition of the work site,
  • the way the work activity is organised, or
  • the way equipment or substances are used.

Deaths that are unrelated to work are not notifiable. For example:

  • a diabetic worker slipping into a coma and dying at work
  • a worker being killed while driving to work in his or her private car when the driving is not done as part of their work
  • death of patients or rest home residents that are triggered by a medical reason (eg injuries from a fall caused by a stroke).


Why you must notify us

You must notify us so we can immediately investigate or follow up on the events that caused the death, or have the potential to cause death when an aircraft was in operation.

Follow the steps below to find out what you must do when someone dies as a result of work.

If someone has been killed as a result of work, then you MUST notify us immediately. Phone 0508 4 SAFETY (24/7). In case of emergency, phone 111.

What you must do

How to notify us

Using PDF forms

What happens next


What you must do

1. Preserve the site 

The person who manages or controls the workplace must take all reasonable steps to ensure that the site where the notifiable event occurred is preserved and not disturbed until a CAA HSU Inspector authorises you to do so.

The site may only be disturbed if:

  • you need to remove the deceased person
  • it's essential to make the site safe or minimise the risk of someone else being hurt or killed
  • directed to do so by the Police
  • permitted by CAA HSU or a CAA HSU Inspector.

To ensure the site is not disturbed:

  • the work set-up should not be changed
  • any plant, substances or other things involved in the event should stay where they are
  • work that could interfere with the site of the event should stop. Work may continue in other parts of the workplace
  • no alterations should be made to the plant, vehicles, or structures involved. 

2. Notify CAA HSU 

If someone dies as a result of work, then: 

  • You must notify us as soon as possible after you become aware that someone has died. 
  • The notification must be made even if Emergency Services attend. 
  • Only one notification is required for each notifiable event.

If there are multiple businesses involved with the work, then one of the businesses should be nominated to notify CAA HSU.

Note that all business involved with the work are responsible for making sure that the notification is made by the nominated business.

3. Keep records

You must keep records of all Notifiable Events for at least five years from the date of the event.


How to notify us

You can notify us by either:

  1. Phoning 0508 4 SAFETY, OR
  2. Downloading and completing the printable PDF form

You will need to download and save this PDF form to your computer and then open it using Adobe Acrobat Reader. 

Find out more about using PDF forms.

You must notify us using the fastest means available to you.

Please be prepared to provide us with as much detail as possible about what has happened. You will receive an acknowledgement that the notification has been received.

We recommend using Chrome, IE or Safari browsers to view the interactive version of the form in.


Using PDF forms

How to fill in a PDF form

  • Before you download and fill in a PDF form, make sure you have the latest version of Acrobat Reader. You can download this from the Adobe website.
  • Right click on the form link and select “Save target as” to save a copy of the form to your computer.
  • Update the File name field to give your form a meaningful name (eg [your company name]_licence application) and click “Save”.

You can now start filling in the PDF form.

  • You can navigate through the fields on PDF form using the tab key, and click to select a check box.
  • When you have finished filling in the form, save the file to your computer.
  • Make sure your changes have been saved before returning the form to us.

More information on filling in PDF forms is available on the Adobe website.


What happens next

Once we have received your notification, it will be reviewed by our Response Team. They will contact you about the next steps.

There are a number of options available, including conducting an investigation or inviting the duty-holder to participate in an assisted review of your health and safety system.

If no action is required, we will confirm this with you.

While there is no requirement under HSWA for you to conduct your own investigation of a notifiable event, investigations can form part of good practice to identify and manage work risk.

After a notifiable event occurs, you should consider:

  • investigating what happened
  • working out what you can do to stop this happening again
  • making changes.  

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