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Our methodology to archiving water incidents

Nov 21, 2021


Our aim

Our aim is to catalogue as many UK water incidents as survive in the public domain. We have begun to extend our catalogue to water incidents involving UK citizens abroad. 


Our purpose

This data is collected to inform the development of new insights and interventions to reduce water incidents and improve outcomes.


Access and usage

According to our copyright statement, Data is made publicly available free of charge for use by site users on a non-commercial basis. 


How we collect our data sources

We complete a search of records available in the public domain using the Google and Bing search engines using a wide range of search topics. We review the first 500 entries of each search result. 

Our catalogue includes surveying coronial records, court judgments, blogs, press articles, company or local authority documentation, presentations, book extracts, and company accounts. All records are recorded in a Sharepoint dataset. 

Data integrity is a key priority for the WIRH. Unfortunately, we cannot report information not already in the public domain. This includes oral statements or emails provided to the blog by members of the public unless you can attest to having direct personal experience of the matters involved. Any oral or written contribution from those with personal involvement will be included within the references and limited to those matters with which you had personal experience. 


How we analyse and present our data

Our quantifiable data is presented in a Data Card representing over 140 data points from each case. Our criteria for screening quantifiable data is based on the Utstein 2015 reporting system. We provide a comparison table of the Utstein 2015, and the Water Incident Research Hub reported criteria in the following articleAll data in the dataset is presented via interactive PowerBI insight dashboards. 

Our qualitative data is analysed and arranged chronologically in our narrative case studies to improve the ease of reading. Each case study is reviewed for consistency against our quantifiable data points.  The case study references section includes all sources listed in the datasetWhere an internal inconsistency is identified, the final case study presentation presents a neutral presentation of the inconsistency. 

Every effort is made to ensure a representative account of each incident is constructed from the available sources. Unfortunately, in some cases, few sources survive, and inconsistency with actual events is more likely.


How you can use our data

We would happily support researchers with access to the dataset in a suitable form to produce work consistent with our purpose. Our site remains accessible to members of the public, and free downloads are included where appropriate for trainers, operators, and other interested parties. 



Every source used in constructing a case study or Data Card is listed in our case history via the references section. We produce unique works; the appropriate copyright statement is listed on each case, post, and resource we include on the Blog. 



Our contributors are not paid to research, collect, and produce data on our blog unless otherwise specified in the article. We collect, sort, and archive the data safely, securely, and responsibly to help generations to come to continue the work we have started. 



If you would like to support the WIRH or provide us with additional information to help us fulfil our purpose, we encourage you to contact us via the contact page in the first instance. 

We welcome contact from families associated with the cases listed on the WIRH.