April 28th marks World Day for Safety and Health at Work. It is an annual international campaign to promote safe, healthy and decent work and has been observed by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) since 2003.
Today, many workers are facing greater pressure to meet the demands of modern working life. Psychosocial risks such as increased competition, higher expectations on performance and longer working hours are contributing to the workplace becoming an ever more stressful environment.
This year the focus is on the importance of reliable data about work-place safety.
At first glance this may seem like more paperwork. However, all businesses must be aware of the big picture to prevent accidents, minimise risks and protect their company, and collecting accurate data is part of that.
Tip 1 – Accidents
- Accident book – complies with Data Protection Act
- Reviewing accidents – trends
- Review risk assessments
- RIDDOR – responsible person
Tip 2 – First Aid
- First aid facilities
- Maintaining first aid box
- Responsible person
- Do you need first aiders/appointed persons?
Tip 3 – Lifts
- Do you have a contract to carry out maintenance/ general repairs?
- Are 6 monthly (or yearly) thorough examination inspections done?
- Where do you keep the records – are they available
- Do you have emergency procedures for trapped persons?
Tip 4 – Asbestos
- Have you had an asbestos survey done?
- Do you have a plan showing where it is?
- Does the survey say what type it is?
- Have you identified where it is in the premise?
- Are there systems in place to inform contractors?
- Tip 5 – Slips & Trips
- Most common form of accidents
- Risk assessment – all slip/trip hazards (Kitchens, entrances, bathrooms – carpets, rugs, flooring, bath mats etc)
- Think about general housekeeping
- Fire exits/routes – keep free from trip hazards
Tip 6– Balconies
- Falls from height!Is there access to the balcony?
- How safe is the balcony – think about children/young adults/smokers?
- Is it safe – if not what are you doing about it?
- Are there procedures in place to prevent access i.e. window restrictors (100mm)
- Falls from height?
- Poor maintenance – resulting in accidents
- Are defects recorded in a maintenance log?
- Covered in risk assessments?
- Inspected – by maintenance / housekeeping staff
Tip 7 – Radiators/water temperatures
- Are all your radiators working at a safe temperature? (Surface temp 44 C)
- Thermostatic control valves
- Is there a risk of scalding from hot water?
- Are they covered in your risk assessments?
- Consider the risks to vulnerable groups? (i.e. water temp 44C)
- Tip 8 – Contractors
- Are you aware of your responsibilities?
- Do they provide copies of their health and safety procedures?
- Do you/they ensure the safety of others when they are working on site?
- Are they fulfilling their obligations?
- Don’t forget you still have overall responsibility!
- Tip 9 – Gas Appliances
- Are your gas appliances serviced annually?
- Are you using a Corgi registered engineer?
- Do you keep your service records/ reports as required?
- Are they available for inspection?
- Tip 10 – Communicate!
- Communicate/consult with your staff!Provide information/instruction/training/ supervision
- Compliance to Health & Safety at Work etc. Act 1974
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