Difference Between
versus

Accident vs. Incident: Know the Difference

Shumaila Saeed
By Shumaila Saeed || Updated on December 25, 2023
An accident is an unplanned event causing damage or injury; an incident is a broader term for any event, notable or commonplace.
Accident vs. Incident

Key Differences

An accident specifically refers to an unexpected, often harmful event, usually involving damage or injury. An incident, however, encompasses a wider range of events, not necessarily negative or accidental, but can include any significant happening.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023
Accidents are often associated with a lack of intent, such as a car crash or a slip and fall. Incidents can be intentional or unintentional, ranging from a security breach (intentional) to a power outage (unintentional).
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023
In legal and insurance contexts, accidents usually imply a degree of liability and compensation. Incidents, in contrast, may be recorded and investigated, especially in organizational settings, to understand and prevent future occurrences, irrespective of liability.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023
The term accident typically brings to mind scenarios of physical harm or property damage. Incident is a neutral term, used in various contexts like IT (security incident), healthcare (medical incident), and business (workplace incident).
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023
In usage, accidents are often seen as preventable and leading to lessons in safety and caution. Incidents, while they may also lead to learning opportunities, do not inherently carry this connotation of preventability or need for caution.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023
ADVERTISEMENT

Comparison Chart

Definition

An unplanned event causing damage or injury
Any notable event, whether positive or negative
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Implication of Negativity

Usually implies harm or damage
Neutral, can be positive or negative
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Scope

Generally limited to harmful events
Broad, encompasses a wide range of events
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Intentionality

Typically unintentional
Can be intentional or unintentional
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Usage Context

Common in legal, safety, and insurance contexts
Used in various fields like IT, healthcare, etc.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023
ADVERTISEMENT

Accident and Incident Definitions

Accident

An accident refers to an unfortunate incident that happens unexpectedly.
He broke his leg in a skiing accident last winter.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Incident

An incident is an event or occurrence, possibly significant or unusual.
The security team quickly responded to the incident at the entrance.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Accident

Accident often implies a lack of intention, leading to unintended consequences.
The chemical spill was an accident during a routine experiment.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Incident

An incident can be a minor or major event, not necessarily negative.
The launch event went smoothly, with no incidents to report.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Accident

An accident is an unforeseen event causing injury or damage.
The car skidded on ice, leading to a serious accident.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023
ADVERTISEMENT

Incident

An incident may refer to a specific instance of something happening.
The company recorded the incident as a breach of protocol.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Accident

An accident can be a mishap resulting in damage or malfunction.
A technical accident disrupted the factory's production line.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Incident

A particular occurrence, especially one of minor importance.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

An accident is sometimes used to describe a failure or mistake in a process.
The financial loss was due to an accounting accident.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Incident

An event in a narrative or drama.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

An unexpected and undesirable event, especially one resulting in damage or harm
An accident on the assembly line.
Car accidents on icy roads.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

A usually violent or disruptive occurrence, especially one that precipitates a larger crisis
An international incident that provoked war.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

An unforeseen event that is not the result of intention or has no apparent cause
A series of happy accidents led to his promotion.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

An occurrence that interrupts normal procedure or functioning; a mishap
The plane landed without incident.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

An instance of involuntary urination or defecation.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

(Law) Something contingent on or related to something else.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

Lack of intention; chance
Ran into an old friend by accident.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

Tending to arise or occur as a result or accompaniment
"There is a professional melancholy ... incident to the occupation of a tailor" (Charles Lamb).
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

(Philosophy) An attribute of a substance that is not essential to its nature.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

(Law) Related to or dependent on another thing.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

An unexpected event with negative consequences occurring without the intention of the one suffering the consequences, and (in the strict sense) not directly caused by humans.
To die by an accident such as an act of God
Act of God
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

(Physics) Falling upon or striking a surface
Incident radiation.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

(legal) casus; such unforeseen, extraordinary, extraneous interference as is out of the range of ordinary calculation.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

An event or occurrence.
She could not recall the time of the incident.
It was an incident that he hoped to forget.
The suspect was released without further incident.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

(transportation) A collision or crash of a vehicle, aircraft, or other form of transportation that causes damage to the transportation involved; and sometimes injury or death to the transportation's occupants or bystanders in close proximity.
There was a huge accident on I5 involving 15 automobiles.
My insurance went up after the second accident in three months.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

A (relatively minor) event that is incidental to, or related to others.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

Any chance event.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

An event that causes or may cause an interruption or a crisis, such as a workplace illness or a software error.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

(uncountable) Chance; random chance.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

Arising as the result of an event, inherent.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

Any property, fact, or relation that is the result of chance or is nonessential or nonsubstantive.
Beauty is an accident.
Lexical gaps are called accidental because their existence is by accident; it is not essential.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

Falling on or striking a surface.
The incident light illuminated the surface.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

(grammar) A property attached to a word, but not essential to it, such as gender, number, or case.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

Coming or happening accidentally; not in the usual course of things; not in connection with the main design; not according to expectation; casual; fortuitous.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

(euphemistic) An instance of incontinence.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

Liable to happen; apt to occur; befalling; hence, naturally happening or appertaining.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

Urine or feces excreted due to incontinence.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

(legal) Dependent upon, or appertaining to, another thing, called the principal.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

(euphemistic) An unintended pregnancy.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

Falling or striking upon, as a ray of light upon a reflecting surface.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

A person born from an unintended pregnancy.
Taylor was our sweet little accident, and we're so glad!
Well I may be annoying but at least I'm not an accident like you are
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

Coming or happening accidentally; not in the usual course of things; not in connection with the main design; not according to expectation; casual; fortuitous.
As the ordinary course of common affairs is disposed of by general laws, so likewise men's rarer incident necessities and utilities should be with special equity considered.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

(geology) An irregular surface feature with no apparent cause.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

Liable to happen; apt to occur; befalling; hence, naturally happening or appertaining.
All chances incident to man's frail life.
The studies incident to his profession.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

(geology) A sudden discontinuity of ground such as fault of great thickness, bed or lentil of unstable ground.{{cite book|
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

Dependent upon, or appertaining to, another thing, called the principal.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

(heraldry) A point or mark which may be retained or omitted in a coat of arms.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

That which falls out or takes place; an event; casualty; occurrence.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

(transportation) Designating any form of transportation involved in an accident.
The NTSB report revealed that the accident airplane was a Cessna 172.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

That which happens aside from the main design; an accidental or subordinate action or event.
No person, no incident, in a play but must be of use to carry on the main design.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

Literally, a befalling; an event that takes place without one's foresight or expectation; an undesigned, sudden, and unexpected event; chance; contingency; often, an undesigned and unforeseen occurrence of an afflictive or unfortunate character; a casualty; a mishap; as, to die by an accident.
Of moving accidents by flood and field.
Thou cam'st not to thy place by accident:It is the very place God meant for thee.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

Something appertaining to, passing with, or depending on, another, called the principal.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

A property attached to a word, but not essential to it, as gender, number, case.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

A single distinct event
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

A point or mark which may be retained or omitted in a coat of arms.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

A public disturbance;
The police investigated an incident at the bus station
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

A property or quality of a thing which is not essential to it, as whiteness in paper; an attribute.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

Falling or striking on something
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

Any accidental property, fact, or relation; an accidental or nonessential; as, beauty is an accident.
This accident, as I call it, of Athens being situated some miles from the sea.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

(sometimes followed by `to') minor or casual or subordinate in significance or nature or occurring as a chance concomitant or consequence;
Incidental expenses
The road will bring other incidental advantages
Extra duties incidental to the job
Labor problems incidental to a rapid expansion
Confusion incidental to a quick change
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Accident

Unusual appearance or effect.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

Incident can imply a disruptive or unexpected event in various contexts.
The power outage was an incident that affected the entire neighborhood.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Accident

A mishap; especially one causing injury or death
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Incident

Incident is often used in formal or technical language to describe an event.
The incident report detailed the sequence of events during the emergency.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Accident

Anything that happens by chance without an apparent cause
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Repeatedly Asked Queries

Do accidents imply negligence?

Accidents can imply negligence, but not necessarily.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

What typically causes an accident?

Accidents are typically caused by unforeseen or unintended factors.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Are accidents always harmful?

Accidents usually involve some form of harm or damage.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Can an incident be a minor event?

Yes, incidents can range from minor to major events.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Do incidents require formal reporting?

Incidents often require formal reporting, especially in organizational or technical contexts.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Are all accidents unintentional?

Accidents are generally unintentional, though there can be exceptions.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

How broad is the term incident?

Incident is a broad term covering any significant event.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Is an incident always a negative event?

No, incidents can be neutral or even positive.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Can an incident be planned?

Yes, an incident can be planned or unplanned.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Can incidents lead to legal action?

Yes, certain incidents can lead to legal action, especially if they involve harm or breach of duty.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Are car crashes considered accidents or incidents?

Car crashes are typically considered accidents.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Is a natural disaster an accident or incident?

Natural disasters are typically referred to as incidents.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Can workplace mishaps be called accidents?

Yes, workplace mishaps are often called accidents.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Is a data breach an accident or incident?

A data breach is more accurately described as an incident.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Is the word accident used in insurance claims?

Yes, accident is commonly used in insurance claims.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

What's an example of a positive incident?

A surprise celebration could be considered a positive incident.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Can accidents result in legal liabilities?

Accidents can result in legal liabilities, especially if due to negligence.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Are incidents always recorded in business settings?

In business settings, most significant incidents are recorded for accountability and improvement purposes.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Can an accident be preventable?

Many accidents are preventable with proper safety measures.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Can an incident escalate to an emergency?

Yes, certain incidents can escalate into emergencies.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Nov 16, 2023

Share this page

Link for your blog / website
HTML
Link to share via messenger
About Author
Shumaila Saeed
Written by
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed, an expert content creator with 6 years of experience, specializes in distilling complex topics into easily digestible comparisons, shining a light on the nuances that both inform and educate readers with clarity and accuracy.

Popular Comparisons

Trending Comparisons

FPTP vs. PRFPTP vs. PR
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
February 16, 2024
FPTP (First Past the Post) is a simple plurality voting system where the candidate with most votes wins; PR (Proportional Representation) allocates seats based on the proportion of votes each party receives.
Japanese Eyes vs. Chinese EyesJapanese Eyes vs. Chinese Eyes
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
December 25, 2023
Japanese Eyes and Chinese Eyes refer to linguistic structures in Japanese and Chinese respectively, each reflecting unique aspects of grammar and syntax.
2 Pole Motors vs. 4 Pole Motors2 Pole Motors vs. 4 Pole Motors
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
December 25, 2023
2 Pole Motors have one pair of magnetic poles and run at higher speeds, while 4 Pole Motors have two pairs of poles and operate at lower speeds, offering higher torque.
Pulley vs. SheavePulley vs. Sheave
Hifza NasirHifza Nasir
April 4, 2024
A pulley is a wheel on an axle designed to support movement and change of direction of a taut cable, while a sheave is the wheel part of a pulley system that specifically interacts with the cable.
Extent vs. ScopeExtent vs. Scope
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
December 25, 2023
"Extent" refers to the degree or range something covers, while "Scope" relates to the breadth or range of coverage, influence, or effect.
Login vs. LogonLogin vs. Logon
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
December 25, 2023
"Login" and "Logon" are often used interchangeably to describe the process of gaining access to a computer system, but "login" can also refer to the credentials used for access.
Poem vs. PoetryPoem vs. Poetry
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
December 25, 2023
A poem is a piece of writing that expresses ideas and emotions with a distinctive style and rhythm; poetry is the art form of writing such pieces.
Nuclear Family vs. Joint FamilyNuclear Family vs. Joint Family
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
January 9, 2024
Nuclear Family is a family unit consisting of parents and their children. Joint Family is a larger family structure comprising parents, children, and other relatives living together.
Poster vs. InfographicPoster vs. Infographic
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
December 25, 2023
A Poster is a large printed image or notice for public display, while an Infographic is a visual representation of information or data.
NM3 vs. M3NM3 vs. M3
Hifza NasirHifza Nasir
April 19, 2024
NM3 measures gas volume under Normal conditions (0°C and 1.01325 bar), while M3 measures volume under the conditions at which it is measured, without standard adjustment.
Vital Proteins Collagen vs. OrganikaVital Proteins Collagen vs. Organika
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
February 9, 2024
Vital Proteins Collagen is a brand offering collagen supplements for health and beauty, while Organika is a broader health and wellness brand with diverse products including collagen.
Data Roaming vs. Cellular DataData Roaming vs. Cellular Data
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
December 25, 2023
Data Roaming allows usage of mobile network services outside of the home network area, while Cellular Data is using mobile services within the home network.
Slazenger Logo vs. Puma LogoSlazenger Logo vs. Puma Logo
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
February 15, 2024
The Slazenger logo features a panther, symbolizing agility and tradition, while the Puma logo depicts a leaping puma, representing speed and strength.
Catapult vs. TrebuchetCatapult vs. Trebuchet
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
January 4, 2024
A catapult is a ballistic device using tension or torsion to launch projectiles, while a trebuchet is a type of catapult using a counterweight for greater force and distance.
Pycharm Community vs. Pycharm ProPycharm Community vs. Pycharm Pro
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
February 4, 2024
PyCharm Community is a free, open-source IDE for Python development, while PyCharm Pro is a paid version with additional advanced features like web development support and database tools.
Fluid vs. LiquidFluid vs. Liquid
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
February 13, 2024
Fluids encompass all substances that flow (including gases and liquids), while liquids specifically refer to fluids with a definite volume but no fixed shape, adapting to their container.
Gorilla Glass 3 vs. Gorilla Glass 5Gorilla Glass 3 vs. Gorilla Glass 5
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
January 1, 2024
Gorilla Glass 3 offers improved scratch resistance and durability compared to its predecessors, while Gorilla Glass 5 focuses on enhanced drop protection and toughness.
Explain vs. DefineExplain vs. Define
Dua FatimaDua Fatima
June 22, 2024
Explaining involves detailing or clarifying a concept, often including context and examples, whereas defining means stating the exact meaning of a word or phrase, typically in a concise manner.
5'11" vs. 6'0"5’11” vs. 6’0″
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
February 4, 2024
The difference between 5'11" and 6'0" is one inch, with 5'11" being 71 inches and 6'0" being 72 inches tall.
Traditional Trade vs. Modern TradeTraditional Trade vs. Modern Trade
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
December 25, 2023
Traditional trade involves local, small-scale, often personalized commerce; modern trade is characterized by large-scale, technology-driven, and impersonal retail environments.
PPM vs. PPMVPPM vs. PPMV
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
February 10, 2024
PPM (parts per million) measures the concentration of one substance within a million parts of another. PPMV (parts per million by volume) expresses gas concentration as volume per million volumes of air.
Crane vs. HeronCrane vs. Heron
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
June 24, 2024
Cranes are large, long-legged and long-necked birds known for their elaborate dances, while herons are typically more solitary, stealth hunters with a distinctive S-shaped neck.
NDM vs. FTPNDM vs. FTP
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
February 15, 2024
NDM (Network Data Mover) automates and secures data transfers across networks, while FTP (File Transfer Protocol) is a standard network protocol for transferring files between computers.
DDR3 vs. DDR3LDDR3 vs. DDR3L
Shumaila SaeedShumaila Saeed
January 29, 2024
DDR3 is a type of RAM with standard voltage (1.5V), while DDR3L is a low voltage variant (1.35V) compatible with both 1.5V and 1.35V slots.

Featured Comparisons

New Comparisons