Incident Reporting

Both British Rowing and the PLA require us to report any incidents (or “close calls”) which happen on the river.

Since 1st January 2009 all recordable and reportable incidents must be reported via the British Rowing Online Incident Reporting System.

So What Counts as an Incident?

Historically, a distinction was drawn between:

  • Reportable incidents: Incidents involving another club (e.g. serious clashing of blades, boat contact), incidents involving an injury to any person, or incidents which are costly to repair, which were required to be formally reported
  • Recordable incidents: less serious incidents or “close calls” which do not result in injury or significant damage to equipment, but which should still be recorded in the club’s incident logbook to help spot any patterns in incidents (e.g. if a particular point on the river is causing more groundings) and to provide a useful record should anything go more seriously wrong later (e.g. a sculler who has recently capsized developing a gastroenterinal disease).

You do not need to be a member of British Rowing to report an incident. If you are a member, you do not need to log in first, but British Rowing state that it is helpful if you do so in the event that they need to investigate the incident further.

Following submission of your Incident Report an automated email including a copy of the report is sent to you (providing you have given an email address when completing the report). A copy of your report will also automatically be sent to the Club Water Safety Adviser of all clubs detailed in the report, and the Regional Water Safety Adviser. The Regional Water Safety Adviser will assess whether the incident requires further investigation and act accordingly. Where an incident occurs on the Tideway and more than £500 of damage is done, a report will also be fowarded by the RWSA to the PLA. The PLA may ask for additional information before the incident is closed.

In addition to filing an online report, you should also ensure that you have informed the club’s safety advisor ( He will automatically receive a copy of any Incident Report filed via the online system, but it is nonetheless important to ensure that you have also spoken to him.

Please note that any equipment damage resulting from an incident on the water (e.g. a broken foot stretcher, or damage to the hull) should also be written up in the equipment damage book at the club – even if the incident has also been recorded online and brought to the attention of the club’s safety office. Please follow the guidelines set out on the Reporting damage to club equipment page. In particular, if damage has been caused which would prevent another crew from using the boat safely it should be reported to a member of the equiment sub-committee (and to your squad coach) as soon as possible, and a ‘quarantine notice’ should be placed on the boat so that others know it is not in use.


Next Safety guidance page: Reporting damage to club equipment
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