When a major incident such as an industrial accident, hazardous material spill, fire or explosion occurs site personnel will be attempting to control the emergency, render first aid and account for personnel. At the same time Emergency Responders, Law Enforcement agencies, regulators such as OSHA, EPA, MSHA, CSB, DOT, various state and local agencies and family members will all be requesting immediate answers. The press will likely be present with plaintiff attorneys sure to follow. Every one of the individuals and representatives will demand access to the site, interviews with witnesses, collection and preservation of evidence and untold amounts of data, and they will want it immediately! Each will come with a different agenda, but all must be accommodated.
Most companies are ill equipped to handle the initial barrage. How they respond in the first few days and weeks can have major implications for years to come. In an attempt to respond to law enforcement and regulatory agency requests, firms often give up too much information and / or fail to adequately protect their rights. Much of the information given to such agencies will be discoverable by attorneys in their quest to recover damages for their clients over the next few years. A system is needed to manage the process.