Heinrich’s Safety Triangle: 3-Minute Safety Talk

Below is a 3-minute Safety Talk you can share with your workers to reinforce the importance of identifying and reporting near misses. There is also a downloadable pdf version of the talk at the bottom of this post.


Hello, I want to discuss an important safety concept known as Heinrich’s [Hine-Rick] Safety Pyramid. Understanding this pyramid can help us prioritize safety measures, prevent workplace accidents, and gain valuable insights into the relationship between incidents and their severity.

Heinrich’s Safety Pyramid is a theory developed by H.W. Heinrich, a renowned safety professional. It visualizes the relationship between different types of incidents and their frequency. 

The pyramid consists of three levels, and the severity of incidents increases as we move up the pyramid. The base represents near misses, followed by minor injuries, and at the top, major injuries.

Near Misses are unplanned events or situations that had the potential to cause harm but, luckily, did not result in any injuries or damages. Near misses are warning signs and indicate areas where accidents could occur if left unaddressed.

Minor injuries involve relatively low levels of harm or short-term impact on individuals. 

However, major injuries result in more severe harm, require medical attention, and have more significant consequences, such as long-term disability or death. 

The pyramid emphasizes the importance of near misses. It suggests upwards of 300 near misses for every major injury or fatality. 

Addressing and tracking near misses promptly, consistently, and effectively can prevent more severe incidents, ultimately saving lives and reducing injuries. 

In conclusion, this safety pyramid highlights the significance of near misses and their relationship to more severe incidents. By recognizing and reporting near misses, we can identify potential hazards, implement preventive measures, and foster a safer work environment. 

Remember, near misses are valuable opportunities for intervention and accident prevention. Let’s stay vigilant, report near misses, and work together to ensure the safety and well-being of everyone in our workplaces.

Download a PDF of this safety talk and an attendee sign-in sheet HERE.

Work safe.  Home safe.  Every day.