Last Updated 12 January, 2024

Critical Incidents Response Service


Critical Incidents

Critical incidents are any event which affects a workplace or community deeply, for example robbery, terrorism, fire, a workplace accident, the sudden death of a colleague or customer on- or offsite, through accident, suicide, violence or illness.

Critical Incident Response

Rowan offers a critical incident response service. Our role will be tailor-made to your incident, and no two cases are the same, but here's an outline of some general principles and possibilities. We will be flexible to accommodate your organisation and your incident and circumstances.


The aim of any critical incident response is to:

  • Support the leadership team in responding to the incident
  • To help affected staff to begin processing and recovering from the incident. We do this by:
    • recognising the abnormality of the incident
    • normalising their individual responses to the incident
    • not overwhelming with information
    • providing informal support.


Best practice is to relieve staff of their normal duties, immediately after the incident, and to provide space where they can gather together as a team, to support one another.

A few days later a Rowan counsellor can come onsite for a group session. These few days give staff time to recover from the initial shock, and to notice how it is affecting them.


  • If several staff, who are colleagues, were affected then we usually offer a group session. It's best to have separate groups for those who witnessed the event and those who didn't. The group session may last about 1.5 hours, allowing colleagues to hear each other and support each other, as well as learning about common responses to trauma. It is followed by the opportunity for individual sessions.
  • Rowan also provides the attached Trauma leaflet, for you to distribute to affected staff, outlining the normal responses to a trauma.
  • We encourage managers to check up on staff in the following weeks. We offer a follow up session 4-6 week after the incident.
  • We recommend that an employee counselling service is made available to affected staff. Rowan can provide this if you do not already have a provider.

Incidents which we have assisted with in the past include: a suicide, a sudden death, a fatal accident, and sustained harassment.

Find out more

To find out more and discuss you particular needs, simply call us on 01738 562005 or use our contact form and we will call you back.

Rowan Consultancy, 121 Burghmuir Road, Perth, PH1 1JF. +44(0)1738 562005