You know not to let spills or leaks go unreported. When reporting to your supervisor or the safety director, your goal is to help identify possible causes of the problem to prevent recurrence. These people are interested in what you think, not just in what you observed.

When talking with anyone else about a spill or leak, follow the rules listed below. And if an outside party questions you, agree to talk only with someone from your company present.

Here is a list of do's and don'ts you should commit to memory.

Do:

  • Tell the truth, as you know it.
  • Be polite but be firm in sticking to the facts, if pressed to deviate from what you saw or heard.
  • Say you don't know, if you don't know.
  • Answer all questions to the best of your ability.
  • Think before responding.

Don't:

  • Cover for someone who broke safety rules.
  • Make excuses for safety violations.
  • Evade questions.
  • Tell people what you think they want to hear.
  • Feel pressured to fill silences or conversational gaps.