Tag - Site Survey

Who is responsible? - Risk assessments & Health and safety

Who is responsible? – Risk Assessments & Health and Safety Policy

Daily hazards are normal, but as employers and business owners we should work to protect our employee’s in the workplace from harm. The Health and Safety Laws are in place to protect your business and employees from dangers that could be easily avoided.

At its simplest – if you are an employer or if you are self-employed, then you are the person responsible for the Risk Assessment and Health and Safety Policy within the business. This makes you the competent person (See more on being the competent person here).

Where can I get reliable risk assessment templates?

If you are an employer and you have more than 5 employees you should (best practice) have a written Risk Assessment and Health and Safety Policy. According to the HSE “A risk assessment is not about creating huge amounts of paperwork, but rather about identifying sensible measures to control the risks in your workplace.” The HSE usefully provides a free downloadable Risk Assement template which includes a basic Health and Safety Policy document. This shows you what to consider whilst writing your polices and helps you to question what is needed to make your workplace safer (Download it or view it here) and accidents and injuries avoidable.

HSE recently published a case study about a young person who was run over by a forklift truck, the forklift truck was being driven by someone who was untrained and unauthorised. This led the company to be prosecuted under the Health and Safety at Work Act and fined a total of over 10k (read the full article here). This is a clear example of someone not considering their responsibility to their employees and themselves to provide a safe working environment. Leaving them without any grounds to fight the ‘inadequate supervision’ claimed by the prosecution. 

How Can Spectrum Industrial Help?

A Safety Site Survey from Spectrum Industrial can help you analyse your current workplace safety system and advise you further on any other potential hazards or dangers. During a Safety Site Survey we look at your current signage, fire exits, extinguishers, walkways, racking, forklift trucks, machinery, roads, paths and then we look at the overall. (If you would like more information or to book a Safety Site Survey email us at sales@centurioneurope.co.uk or call us on 01302 800 273).

Further Reading:

Get competent advice (www.hse.gov.uk/business/competent-advice.htm)
HSE leaflet: Getting specialist help with health and safety (www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/indg420.htm)

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Firm hit with £32,000 fine after injury

On April 28th 2018, workers at the Shop Direct Distribution Centre, employed by Logistex Limited carried out refurbishment works on the Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS) when an accident occurred.

Workers had activated the emergency stop circuit, presuming this would prevent the machinery from operating. They then proceeded to replace sensors on the lift part of the equipment which weighed around 800kg.

The the control panel was switched on which caused the lift to drop. A worked trapped his foot between the lift and the frame of the truck he was standing on.

Emergency services were called out to the incident and fire and rescue service released him from beneath the lift. His injuries were so severe that his second and third toes had to be cut back to the knuckle. His other three toes required exploitative surgery to identify damage.

Oldham Council investigated the matter and found that refurbishment work had been inadequately planned and risk assessed. In particular it identified that work was being carried out whilst it still had power and had not been correctly isolated or locked out.

Oldham Council prosecuted the firm under Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act and Regulation 3(1) (a) of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999.

Logistex Limited pleaded guilty to the two charges and was fined £12,000 for each offence, plus costs of over £8,000. An additional Victim surcharge of £170 was also added.

Proactive Implementation of Health and Safety Guidelines

This case highlights the need for electrical machinery to be correctly isolated and powered down. If correct procedures had been in place and followed, the likelihood of such an incident would be greatly reduced.

Had an in-depth risk assessment had taken place, it would have identified the need for Lockout procedures and equipment to have been used. Energising switches that could be accessed and operated caused the equipment to become unexpectedly re-energised whilst it was being worked on.

Lockout and Tagging Supplies

In reality, the pieces of Lockout and Tagging equipment needed to effectively lockout the control panel may have only cost a few pounds. There will be a cost Companies may be reluctant to go through risk assessment procedures as they may be seen as a waste of time. Especially when down time on machines reduces productivity.

Spectrum Industrial supply a wide range of both Electrical and Mechanical Lockout equipment. Simple to use, with the right guidelines put into place, Lockout equipment can avoid injuries, accidents and helps save lives.


Safety Site Surveys

We also offer Site Surveys where we can help identify any potential hazards and help companies put procedures and guidelines in place to avoid such accidents.

Find out more about our Safety Site Surveys here.

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