N173250 Darren Owens HSD3
NCRQ Assessment 1 FURTHER WORKPLACE HAZARDS
DOCUMENT 3 TASK 4 (FARMER)
The general standard of Health & Safety on the farm falls well below an acceptable level, because of this you as both the owner and employer are liable to potential enforcement and or prosecution from the Health and Safety Executive.
You as the employer must:
As you sometimes employ 5 or more people you are required under the Health & Safety Act 1974 to take certain steps to ensure the Health & Safety of yourself, your employees and anyone who comes onto your property.
The following is a brief description of possible actions available to the HSE with regards breaches to the Health and Safety at work act 1974.
Formal Letter: A formal letter may contain details of breeches and the actions needed to comply with legislation, it may also contain more detailed and formalised advice. Whilst visiting a premises, an inspector can prepare an instant visit report with a date agreed for work to be completed.
Improvement Notice: Where a breech is more serious, the inspector may issue an improvement notice, which will outline the work required and a date for completion. This will last 21 days from the date of receipt.
Prohibition Notice: If an activity involves, or is likely to involve, a serious risk of personal injury, the inspector may serve a prohibition notice to stop that activity either immediately or at the end of a period specified.
Prosecution: In addition to the enforcement outlined above, the inspector may consider that it is also necessary to prosecute, this can either be in a Magistrates Court or Crown Court.
To comply with Health & Safety
You must appoint someone who is competent to help you with Health & Safety, or if you feel confident you can appoint yourself as the competent person.
To help you with this the HSE have produced a downloadable document which will guide you through what’s required. Search : http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/indg449.pdf you are required under the Health ; safety at Work Act to comply with the following.
The following guides will help you.
www.hse.gov.uk/business/competent-advice.htmwww.hse.gov.uk/pubns420.htmyou will need to write a policy that covers Health ; Safety, this document will tell others how you are committed to
Health ; Safety and how you are going to manage it within your business. A guide is available through the HSE.
This template includes a section on Risk Assessments so you can record your findings. (there is also an example of a Health ; Safety Policy)
Once this document is completed you must ensure your staff are aware of its content and that its regularly reviewed and updated.
You must manage how you control risks within your business, you can do this by writing down what are the hazards/Risks within your business and take steps to reduce these hazards/risks to an acceptable level. This would be done by completing a risk assessment for the hazard and taking steps to reduce the Hazard to a manageable level. You must record the significant Hazards/Risks, everyday low risk tasks do not need to be recorded.
A risk Assessment template is available at www.hse.gov.uk/risk/assessment.htmAfter you have highlighted the Risks you need to do something about them, and put actions in place to reduce these risks. Risk assessments need to be review regularly as things within the business can change, meaning that the risks can change.
As an employer you must also talk to your employees about Health ; Safety, how you control risks within your business and how you will provide training and information. You must also provide adequate welfare facilities, Toilets washing facilities, fresh drinking water, a dry place to store clothes and somewhere suitable where they can take their breaks. You must ensure the workplace is properly maintained and allows safe access and egress.
You need to ensure that you have made arrangements for medical intervention in the event of an accident. An appointed competent and trained first aider with access to first aid equipment and that your employees are aware of how to contact this person. If there is an accident on your premises, you must record the incident and in certain circumstances inform the HSE.
You need to display the Health ; Safety poster on your premises, this poster includes a list that tells your employees what they and you need to do. You can get this poster from www.gov./pubns/books/lawposter.htmAs an employee you will also require employees liability insurance and if members of the public could be effected by your business you will also need public liability insurance.
As an employer you must provide free of charge any equipment or protective clothing to ensure your employees safety whilst carrying out their duties.
Your employees must:
Comply to any training they receive with regards to your employment.
They are responsible for your own Health ; Safety and the Health ; Safety of those who might be effected by what they do in the work place.
Work with you and co-operate with others with regards to Health ; Safety.
Inform you, the employer of any concerns they have with regards to Health ; Safety.
With regards to your particular farm you need to comply to the following Regulations.
(Failure to do so could result in possible intervention by the HSE which costs can be recovered)
Confined spaces regulation 1997- With regards to your silos and slurry pits.
Construction Design and Management regulations 2015- With regards to any construction work you undertake on your property.
Control of Asbestos regulations 2012- With regards to your previous and planned removal of Asbestos containing roofing sheets (ACM)-Asbestos containing materials.
Control of Substances Hazardous to Health regulations 2002- With regards to your use of and storage of chemicals which you use on the farm.
Control of Vibration at work regulations 2005- With regards to your use of hand held power tools and machinery.
Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres regulations 2002- With regards to the use of thinners and paint spraying and storage of gas bottles.
Electricity at Work regulations 1989- With regards to the current condition of your electrical installations etc.
Gas Safety (Installation and Use of) Regulations 1998- With regards to the Storage and use of gas bottles and oxyacetylene.
Health and Safety at Work Act 1974- With regards to the overall management of Health and Safety on your premises.
Health and Safety (First Aid) regulations 1981- With regards to you providing suitable and sufficient first aid for your employees and anyone on your premises.
Lifting operations and Lifting Equipment regulations 1998- With regards to your and your employees use of equipment and plant for lifting and the use of lifting slings.
Manual handling regulations 1992- With regards to the nature of your business manually lifting of objects.
Personal Protective Equipment Regulations 1992- With regards to your use of machinery, chemicals Asbestos.
Pressurised Systems Safety regulations 2000- With regards to your use of compressors in the garage and the milking system.
Working at Height regulations 2005- With regards to you and your employees access and egress storage areas and the grain store and persons climbing ladders and climbing up bales of hay and straw.
Control of Pesticides regulations 1986- With regards to your use of and management storage of pesticides.
There is generally a very poor standard of housekeeping on the farm, because of this the potential for accidents and injury to yourself, your employees your family and visitors to your premises are extremely high. Due to the unhindered access to areas on your premises, persons on your premises have access to chemicals, access to areas of height, and access to plant and machinery this is unacceptable.
The access and egress to the farm allows vehicles and plant to move around unhindered, no speed restrictions or traffic calming or traffic management plan is in place. As you potentially have visitors to your premises, who do not know the layout of the farm this could result in serious injury to anyone on your premises through contact with moving vehicles and plant. More advice can be found on the following website from the HSE: www.hse.gov.uk/workplacetransport/checklist/section2.htmThe general condition of the plant and machinery looks in poor condition and there is no evidence of a preventative maintenance program or service records. The machinery requires a 12 month annual thorough inspection or 6 monthly if its used to carry or lift people. As the trailer carries people it will require a 6 monthly inspection. (Lifting Operation and Lifting Regs 1998 Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regs 1998). All plant and machinery should also undergo a prestart check before use.
Below is a weblink to the CITB checklist for LOLER inspections which need to be carried out by a suitable qualified and competent person.
The storage of chemicals falls well below the standard required under The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regs 2002, all the chemicals need to be managed to ensure there correct storage and use and to prevent unauthorised access. Below is an example of a COSHH checklist. A COSHH assessment can be found on the CITB website at www.citb.co.uk/documents/publications/companion-pages/checklists-forms/gb/csk-ge700-2018-gb07.pdf
All the chemicals need to be stored with restricted access. XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
Ladders and stairs allow unauthorised access to areas of height on your premises. General storage of gas bottles, paint, flammable materials raises the risk of fire, and or explosion. The removal of asbestos to replace the roof of the out building exposed everyone in the vicinity to possible asbestos fibre inhalation which, with no formal training or PPE or HSE medicals fails to comply with the Control of Asbestos Regs 2012. The poor control of trailing cables, general waste materials lying around exposes everyone on site to slips trips and falls. The slurry pits need to be maintain better to prevent access and possible exposer to toxic fumes. Damaged flooring in the grain store is a major hazard to anyone in the area. The general poor condition of the electrical systems would fail any inspection and exposes any person to possible electrocution and possible severe injury and death. The diesel storage tanks are unbunded, not sign posted and there are obvious signs of spillage which can cause environmental damage. As a responsible employer your are expected to managed the Hazards and risks on site. If you feel you are unable to complete this on your own you are expected to employ a competent person to carry out this for you. You can find advice on appointing a competent person through the HSE or the NFU.
It is important that action is taken to comply with Health and Safety at Work act and reduce the hazards and risks to an acceptable level this will prevent action from the HSE, possible Prosecution fines prohibition orders and or imprisonment. It is not only the financial implications of non-compliance, If an employee is injured whilst at work, they can make a claim against their employer if their employer has failed to provide them in any way, a safe and healthy working environment. Negligence may be found if their employer has not supplied the employee with the appropriate safety equipment (PPE) or training. This is an obligation to the employer, both as a common law duty and as a statutory law duty. A good reputation is a crucial part of a business’s success. However, a poor health and safety culture will cost your reputation. If you fail to recognise the importance of health and safety, your business may face a decrease in productivity and an increase in staff turnover as morale falls. After all, why should staff be motivated to work hard if you don’t show that you value them enough to provide even the most basics of requirements
Some reasonable safety arrangements that you can implement that would greatly improve the Health and Safety standards on site could include the following:
Ensuring that access to ladders and stairs needs to be restricted and all access via ladders especially the wall mounted rung ladder needs to be urgently reviewed and an alternative way to access the gain store.
Restricting access to areas such as the garage, grain store, machinery and plant, any areas of height will reduce the possibility of accidents to non-employees, such as the visitors to the farm. Ensuring doors are locked and areas of restricted access are sign posted and highlighted on a site map.
All chemicals on site to be stored in a dry well ventilated clean secure room. The room will need to be signposted as a chemical store, all the chemicals will need to be stored as product by product, labelled in sealable containers and a stock list of what is stored created. Suitable spillage equipment and fire fighting equipment needs to also be readily available. All employees will need training in chemical spill clean-up process and what to do in the event of a fire. Inform the local fire brigade of what chemicals are stored on site. Alternatively hold no chemicals on site and only order the amounts required to be delivered when needed, that would be used immediately, this is called the “just in time” system it does take man hours to set up but once in place the need to store chemicals in any volumes would be removed. Setting up is a simple as arranging with your supplier the chemical and amounts required to be delivered “just before you need them, this prevents any long term storage issues. However any unused or left overs will have to be managed as stated.
The introduction of a site transport plan which segregates moving vehicles, plant and pedestrians and identifies a parking area for safer access and egress, also a site wide speed restriction to reduce the risk of pedestrians coming to harm.
A major housekeeping clean-up of the stores, garage and areas would help to reduce the risk of fire as there are large quantities of potential fuel sources in these areas.
1/ WORKING AT HEIGHT:
As a lot of your work involves access to areas that are “At Height” you need to manage how you, your employees or anyone else who comes onto your site, especially young and vulnerable persons access and egress from these areas, also how you prevent unauthorised access to these areas.
Every year, hundreds of farmers their employees seasonal workers and visitors (authorised/unauthorised) are injured and too many die in avoidable farming accidents. In fact, despite a slight downward trend in accidents and that there are some behavioural change occurring in the industry, agriculture continues to have the worst safety record of any occupation in the UK.
The farming industry carries an above-average risk of falling from height accidents. Farming, forestry and horticulture employ about 1% of the national workforce but the risk of falling from heights or being struck by a falling object account for nearly 30% of all fatalities in agriculture, which only demonstrates that ‘Falls’ must remain high on the list of farming risks to be managed.- Source HSE
Any fall from height can lead to long term injuries and make it difficult to keep working. Accidents of this type happen because the work is not properly planned, proper, precautions are not taken, the risks are not recognised, or the equipment used is broken or damaged, not if for purpose, or used incorrectly.
When carrying out work at height:
There is a safety hierarchy that you should follow (Avoid, Plan, Prevent, Train)
1/ Avoid work at height if at all possible
2/ When this is not possible and work at height is required, plan the task properly, consider using safety equipment
Preventing a falls is better than mitigating against a fall, so given a choice between the two, good edge protection is generally preferable to soft landing systems (bales for example).
3/ Collective measures such as netting/edge protection etc. are preferable to personal measures such as fall arrest harnesses.
4/ You must provide training for any of your employees who need to work at height.
Work on fragile roofs requires a slightly different approach.
1/ Work from underneath the roof using a suitable platforms, i.e. scaffold towers, MEWP.
2/ When this is not possible, using a Mobile Elevating Work Platform (MEWP) that allows the work from within the basket, thus avoiding the need to stand on the roof.
3/ If access onto the fragile roof cannot be avoided, perimeter edge scaffolding protection should be installed by competent and trained persons, craqwling boards or staging used to spread the load. safety nets should be installed underneath the roof or a fall arrest harness system used,
4/ Where fall arrest harnesses are used they need to be regularly inspected and fixed to adequate anchorage points.
Ladders and stepladders are often seen as a default option when working at height, but if there is a safer solution then it needs be used. While ladders and stepladders can have their place at work for gaining access to areas of height, they should only be used where the work is low risk and of short duration (less than 30 minutes). Three points of contact with the ladder must be maintained at all times. The top of the ladder must extend at least one metre above the egress point. Ladders should be well maintained be inspected before use ,they must be secured and properly footed during use, Farmers and farm employees must ensure that the use of ladders is controlled and is not seen as the first option. The use of ladders should be seen as a last resort, as there are usually safer better options available. Use of ladders is at the bottom of the work at height hierarchy and there are better options in many cases.
Provided they are erected by trained and competent persons, used safely, designed properly, scaffold towers or work platforms are safer options than ladders or stepladders.
Ladders and stepladders are not banned under health and safety law. In fact they can be a sensible and practical option for low-risk, short duration tasks.
Further information can be found on the HSE website: http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/indg455.pdf
You need to improve access to areas of height on the farm.
1/ Access to the storage area.(via the old ladder in the wall) as you have alternative access to this store from the inside I would suggest you remove the old ladder in the wall to prevent access by this method.
2/ Outside access to storage building. I would recommend that the single unguarded handrail has some form of barrier installed to stop young persons slipping/falling through the gaps on the edge of the steps.
3/ The hole in the grain store floor needs to be repaired and a general assessment of the condition of the floor be undertaken.
4/ The ladders used to access the grain store are in poor condition and need replacing with class 1 industrial ladders that have a inspection tag to show that pre-use inspections have been carried out before they are used. Ideally a more permeant fixture for accessing the grain store i.e. stairs.
5/ The standard of stacking the hay and straw bales needs to be reviewed. A more pyramid stacking pattern needs to be used to improve stability of the stacks. The following information is available through the HSE website which will guide you through the process of storing and sacking hay and straw bales. www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/indg125.pdf
Every year exposure to hazardous substances at work affects the health of thousands of people. Frequently reported illnesses are:
Lung disease (dusty conditions)
Dermatitis or skin cancer (frequent contact with oils, contact with corrosive liquids)
Occupational asthma (sensitisation to isocyanates in paints or adhesives), and
Employers are obligated to protect workers and others who may be exposed to hazardous substances. The high costs of ill health arise from loss of earnings, loss of productivity, prosecution and civil action amongst others.
There are many hazardous substances in use in industry today therefore it is essential to ensure first of all that those being used are absolutely necessary, and that there are no safer alternatives. Secondly it is vital that employees and the environment are protected from the effects of these substances by the use of training and appropriate protective measures.
What is this?This is a written procedure that tells you how to undertake COSHH assessments and identify and control hazardous substances in the workplace. A PDF of the procedure is available to download (see attached), please use it in conjunction with the attached Employee Substance Matrix and Toolbox Talk.
Substances hazardous to health can be identified in several ways:
A substance that has been assigned a Workplace Exposure Limit (WEL) in the HSE Guidance Note EH40: 2005 – Workplace Exposure Limits.
It has a black/orange label on the container which classifies it as very toxic, toxic, harmful, corrosive or irritant.
Biological agents such as bacteria and viruses.
Note: These procedures do not cover carcinogens or biological agents due to their complexity.
Why do we have to complete COSHH assessments?
To assess the risks to health from hazardous substances in your workplace;
To help prevent accidents and ill health arising from your work activities; and
Legislation requires you to carry out COSHH assessments and to record any significant findings.
How do I complete a COSHH assessment?
Identify all the hazardous substances used in or created by your workplace activities and the likelihood of exposure.
Obtain Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) as required by the Chemical Hazard (Information and Packaging) Regulations 2002 (CHIP). These come from the suppliers of the products. If you are manufacturing a product then you will have to prepare a MSDS for distribution to your employees and customers.
Using the Material Safety Data Sheets identify how the substances can harm your workers.
Identify what control measures are needed to protect your workforce.
Ensure that control measures are used and maintained properly and that safety procedures are followed.
If necessary, monitor the exposure of employees to hazardous substances.
Carry out health surveillance where appropriate.
Prepare plans and procedures to deal with accidents, incidents and emergencies.
Provide your employees with suitable and sufficient information, instruction and training.
Assessment of substances
The person responsible for implementing this procedure must ensure that:
A site survey is undertaken identifying all hazardous substances on site.
A document is maintained outlining what substances are going to be kept.
The following information must be maintained for substances that are kept:
Material Safety Data Sheet.
The quantities, volumes and location of the substances held on site.
How employees may come into contact with substances (This should include potential exposure if control measures fail), and which employees will encounter which products.
How do I control exposure to hazardous substances?
Identify the appropriate control measures required to protect the health of the person exposed. The following hierarchy should be considered:
E = Elimination – Remove the substance from the workplace.R = Replacement or Reduction – Use substances that are less hazardous or reduce the amount.I = Isolation – Introduce engineering controls that stop the exposure at source. Deny employee access to the substance.C = Control – Implement a safe system of work or follow industry ‘good practice’. Supply information, instruction and training.
Wherever possible, the control measures should eliminate the requirement for use of personal protective equipment (PPE).
What if the substance has a Workplace Exposure Limit (WEL)?
HSE has established WELs for a number of substances. The aim of WELs is to replace the existing Occupational Exposure Standards (OESs) and Maximum Exposure Limits (MELs), which employers often found difficult to understand and implement, with one simple system.
The intention is to contain exposure below a set limit. A WEL is the average maximum concentration of an airborne substance to which employees may be exposed.
Many substances in the workplace have exposure limits. To find out if the substance you are handling has an exposure limit then go to:
HSE publication: EH40:2005 – Workplace Exposure Limits
www.hse.gov.uk/coshhWhat do I need to tell my employees?
Provide information and training for the users to enable them to handle the substances safely. This can be achieved by utilising ‘COSHH information sheets’; these are available as an addition to this procedure.
If personal monitoring has been undertaken the employees need to know the results, how the exposure may affect them, and what controls need to be followed.
When should I review the assessment?
The assessment should be reviewed regularly (at least every 5 years).
The assessment should be reviewed immediately if you suspect it is no longer valid after:
The examination of engineering controls
Monitoring exposure in the workplace
Health surveillance or the confirmed case of occupation-induced disease
The assessment should be reviewed if there has been a significant change in the work you are doing such as:
A change of the substances being used
Plant modification, including engineering controls
The process or methods of work
The volume or rate of production
What maintenance, examination and testing do I need to undertake?
All control measures, including PPE, need to be maintained in an efficient state.
Local Exhaust Ventilation (LEV) needs thorough examination and testing by a competent person at intervals not exceeding 14 months. Note: Stricter timescales are in place for metal casting fumes. Please refer to the general COSHH ACOP. Respiratory protective equipment must be inspected at routine intervals (every 3 months is a suggestion), dependent on the level of use.
Records of examination and test must be held for a minimum of 5 years.
Do I need to undertake exposure monitoring?
You have to measure the concentration of hazardous substances in the air breathed in by workers where your assessment concludes that:
There could be serious risks to health if control measures fail or deteriorate;
Exposure limits might be exceeded; or
Control measures might not be working properly.
Do I need to undertake health surveillance?
You need to carry out health surveillance in the following circumstances:
Where an employee is exposed to one of the substances listed in Schedule 6 of COSHH.
Where employees are exposed to a substance linked to a particular disease or adverse health effect, there is a reasonable likelihood of it occurring, and it is possible to detect it.
Health screening records need to be held for 40 years. If a company ceases to trade, the records should be offered to the HSE for safekeeping.
Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations
Hazardous substance list and employee matrix H&SCOSHH01Manufacturer’s Material Safety Data Sheets
‘COSHH information sheets’
Examination and test records
Personal exposure monitoring sheets
Many people are seriously injured or die as a result of a fire in the workplace. In addition to personal injury claims, fire can also cost businesses many millions of pounds in lost production and revenue, and in increased insurance premiums. It has been shown that approximately 80% of businesses fail to recover from a significant workplace fire. It makes good sense therefore to protect yourself, your staff, and your business from the risk of fire.
In England and Wales, new rules introduced in October 2006 have replaced the majority of existing fire safety legislation. Fire certificates are no longer required, and the emphasis is on reducing risk and preventing fires. The new rules were introduced in Northern Ireland in 2007.
The wide variety of flammable substances found in the workplace range from the obvious, e.g. heating fuel, petrol, paint thinners and welding gases, to the less obvious, e.g. packaging materials, dusts from wood, flour and sugar. Fires can be avoided or the risk minimised by the implementation of effective controls and procedures.
Employers have a duty to take reasonable steps to reduce the risk of fire and to make sure people can escape safely in the event of a fire. The regulations apply to all non-domestic premises.
These Fire Safety procedures provide an overview of the new regulations and how to comply with them.
Please also read the following section:
What is this?This is a written procedure which covers all aspects of managing fire safety within the workplace and clearly defines the responsibilities under the fire order. A PDF of the procedure is available to download (see attached), please use it in conjunction with the attached Risk Assessment, Log Book and Toolbox Talk.
What is the Fire Safety Order?
The Fire Safety Order replaces previous fire safety legislation. Any fire certificate issued under the Fire Precautions Act 1971 will cease to have any effect.
What do responsible managers need to do?
The person responsible for implementing this procedure must:
Undertake a fire risk assessment;
Appoint one or more competent persons to carry out any of the preventive and protective measures identified in the assessment;
Provide employees with clear and relevant information about risks identified by the fire risk assessment, about the measures taken to prevent fires, and how these measures will protect them if a fire breaks out;
Consult employees (or their nominated representatives) about nominating people to carry out particular roles in connection with fire safety, and about proposals for improving the fire precautions;
Co-operate and co-ordinate with contractors and other responsible persons who also have employees or premises in the building, and inform them of any significant risks identified and how they will be reduced/controlled;
Establish a suitable means of contacting the emergency services and provide them with any relevant information about dangerous substances;
Provide appropriate information, instruction and training to your employees;
You should ensure that the premises and any equipment provided in connection with fire fighting, fire detection and warning, or emergency routes and exits, are suitably maintained.
What about employees?
Employees must co-operate with you to ensure the workplace is safe from fire and its effects, and must not do anything that will place themselves or other people at risk.
What should my emergency plan cover?
The emergency plan should provide clear instructions on:
The action employees should take if they discover a fire;
How people will be warned if there is a fire;
How the evacuation of the workplace should be carried out;
Where people should assemble after they have left the workplace, and procedures for checking whether the workplace has been evacuated;
The key escape routes, how people can gain access to them, and escape from them to places of safety;
The fire-fighting equipment provided;
The duties and identity of employees who have specific responsibilities in the event of a fire;
Arrangements for the safe evacuation of people identified as being especially at risk, such as contractors, those with disabilities, members of the public and visitors;
Where appropriate, any machines / processes / power supplies which need to be stopped or isolated in the event of fire;
Specific arrangements, if necessary, for high fire risk area of the workplace;
How the fire brigade and any other necessary emergency services will be called and who will be responsible for doing this;
Procedures for liaising with the fire brigade on arrival and notifying them of any special risks, e.g. the location of highly flammable materials;
The training employees require and the arrangements for ensuring that this training is given.
What about a site plan?
If you have a large or complex workplace, then it might be beneficial to include a simple line drawing. The drawing could show:
Essential structural features such as the layout of the workplace, escape routes, doorways, walls, partitions, corridors, stairways, etc. (including any fire-resisting structure and self-closing fire doors provided to protect the means of escape);
Means for fighting fire (details of the number, type and location of the fire-fighting equipment);
The location of manually operated fire alarm call points and control equipment for the fire alarm;
The location of any emergency lighting equipment and any exit route signs;
The location of any automatic fire-fighting system and sprinkler control valve;
The location of the main electrical supply switch, the main water shut-off valve and, where applicable, the main gas or oil shut-off valves.
Who should undertake the assessments and training?
Only competent people should undertake fire risk assessments or fire safety training. A competent person must have the relevant training, skills, knowledge and experience to deliver these requirements.
The Fire Safety Order 2005
The maintenance of a tidy working environment is a significant control measure that helps to eliminate slip, trip and fall incidents in the workplace.
The Housekeeping Procedure covers all aspects of housekeeping including the identification, prevention and reduction of slips, trips and falls in the workplace.
The procedure outlines what to consider when undertaking a housekeeping risk assessment. It explains the duties of employees and gives some examples of housekeeping initiatives for consideration.
There is also a housekeeping checklist that can be modified for your site.
What is this?
This is a written procedure which covers all aspects of housekeeping including the identification, prevention and reduction of slips, trips and falls in the workplace. A PDF of the procedure is available to download (see attached), please use it in conjunction with the attached Checklist and Toolbox Talk.
What do we need to do?
The person responsible for implementing this procedure must ensure that:
An initial risk assessment of housekeeping hazards is undertaken;
All risk assessment findings are communicated back to the workforce;
An action plan is developed detailing any recommendations raised in the assessment along with realistic timescales, and the personnel responsible for rectifying any improvements;
A continuous review of site conditions is performed to monitor performance.
The risk assessment must:
Cover all locations on the site including processing plants, haul roads, offices, canteens and workshops;
Identify all unused, unwanted and unnecessary items that may present a slip, trip or fall hazard;
Identify how the items that are being kept will be correctly stored (this could include designated storage areas, shadow boards for tools, racking and shelving);
Identify areas of spillage, what controls can be implemented to stop the spillage at source, and how to deal with them immediately;
Outline how the storage of oils and lubricants is to be carried out to minimise spillage incidents;
Result in a housekeeping action plan for the site.
What information needs to be given to employees?
The responsible manager must ensure that employees are made aware of the following:
The findings that have been identified through a risk assessment;
The control measures required to minimise the risk of housekeeping issues within the workplace;
The results of any site housekeeping inspections (these can be displayed on the site notice board).
Note: Make sure information is communicated in such a way that employees can be expected to understand (for example you might need to make special arrangements if the employee does not understand English or cannot read). Responsible managers have a duty to make contractors and visitors aware of housekeeping standards.
What do employees have to do?
Co-operate to ensure that the standard of housekeeping is maintained to a high level;
Notify management of housekeeping issues in the work environment.
Should changes to plant, equipment or significant process occur, a re-assessment should be considered. If it appears that nothing has changed, a review of the assessment must not be left for more than two years.
Note: A review does not necessarily mean a re-assessment.
Health and Safety at Work Act 1974
Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations
The Visitors Procedure explains the requirements for ensuring that site visitors are protected in relation to their health, safety and welfare.
The procedure offers guidance on what should form part of the responsible manager’s risk assessment for visitors, what involvement safety representatives can have in the assessment process, and how visitors should behave when on-site.
It should be read in conjunction with the section on workplace rules.
What is this?
This is a written procedure which explains the requirements for ensuring that site visitors are protected in relation to their health, safety and welfare. A PDF of the procedure is available to download (see attached), please use it in conjunction with the attached Toolbox Talk.
What does the responsible manager need to do?
The responsible manager should:
Undertake a risk assessment to identify the hazards that could potentially harm visitors on his/her site.
Involve employees and/or their safety representatives in the risk assessment process.
Formulate a set of workplace rules purely for visitors.
Ensure that these rules are displayed at reception and communicated to visitors upon arrival.
Ensure that all visitors ‘sign in’ on entering the site.
Provide adequate information, instruction and supervision for visitors whilst they are on-site (i.e. significant hazards such as shotfiring or the presence of silica).
Inform visitors of any relevant emergency procedures (i.e. accidents or fire).
What should visitors do?
All visitors must follow the site rules which may contain the following:
Report to the site office and ‘sign in’;
Delivery drivers must adhere to the site speed limit which is displayed;
Obey all other traffic signs/signals or instructions;
Give way to mobile plant, e.g. dumpers, loading shovels, etc.;
Give way to pedestrians;
Never reverse unless you have clear all round vision, are under the instruction of a banksman or have checked behind your vehicle before commencing to reverse;
Keep to designated traffic routes and haul roads unless instructed otherwise;
Do not drive with your vehicle body in a raised position;
Do not leave your cab unless it is absolutely necessary;
Wear the correct personal protective equipment;
Do not enter or interfere with any plant or machinery; and
Report any accident or incident immediately.
Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974
Management of Health and Safety Regulations 1999
Having good access and egress to the site and to the plant and equipment operating on the site is a basic health and safety requirement that is often overlooked. Over 30% of workplace accidents are as a result of slips, trips and falls. Addressing the fundamental issues associated with access and egress can help reduce accidents, incidents and near hits in the workplace.
This written procedure provides advice and support on what to look for when undertaking a risk assessment. It is broken down into sections looking at static plant and equipment and mobile plant and considers issues such as traffic and pedestrian routing and confined space entry. It should be read in conjunction with the mobile and static plant inspection and the housekeeping modules.
What is this?
This is a written procedure which explains the control measures required to ensure that all persons have suitable access and egress in the workplace. A PDF of the procedure is available to download (see attached), please use it in conjunction with the attached Toolbox Talks. What does the responsible manager need to do?
The responsible manager should:
Undertake a risk assessment to identify all access and egress hazards within the workplace.
Transfer any recommendations for improvement onto a site action plan.
Communicate the findings of the access and egress assessment to all employees and, if applicable, contractors.
Monitor the effectiveness of the access and egress by using the site daily inspection form.
Mobile plant and equipment
There are potentially several hazards associated with access and egress for mobile plant. They are as follows:
Environmental conditions (mud, ice);
Unsafe working practices (not maintaining 3-points of contact);
Lack of maintenance;
Poor design in access steps (especially the first step);
Lack of access steps;
Lack of handrail/guardrail;
Poor visibility (lighting); and
Lack of space to manoeuvre when entering or exiting the cab.
Static plant and equipment
The following access and egress for static plant and equipment should be considered:
Confined space work
Routine or planned maintenance repairs on plant and equipment
Emergency or unplanned maintenance repairs on plant and equipment, and
Walkways and platforms.
What must be considered as part of the risk assessment for access and egress to static plant and equipment and mobile plant?
Encourage manufacturers to be more proactive and to consider access issues at the design stage (This includes walkways on the non-drive side of conveyors);
Encourage manufacturers to be more proactive and to consider ergonomics at the design stage;
Avoid the use of chain mounted steps;
If practical, encourage the use of stairways as access and egress points;
Ensure that all operators are deemed competent to operate the equipment;
Remind operators of their duty to undertake daily inspections on the equipment and to report defects immediately;
Provide handrails rather than handholds wherever possible (if practicable on both sides);
Ensure the access steps are anti-slip and do not pose a risk to operators cleaning their vehicles;
Provide a mechanism for holding open the cab door when the operator climbs in and out the cab;
Ensure access and egress is safe where items of plant are to be stored during strip down maintenance;
Ensure that all operators are deemed competent to operate the equipment;
Remind operators of their duty to undertake daily inspections on the equipment and to report defects immediately;
Ensure that all operators park their vehicles on level ground;
Ensure the access steps are a suitable width;
Ensure that adequate lighting is provided for operators gaining access to and egress from the equipment;
Ensure that suitable protective footwear is provided with anti-slip soles; and
Ensure that vehicles, plant and equipment are kept clean and tidy.
Other forms of access and egress that should be considered in a risk assessment
Entry to and from the site (site entrance);
To and from offices, weighbridges and other site buildings;
Egress in emergency situations (i.e. fire exits);
Haul roads; and
Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974
Management of Health and Safety Regulations 1999
Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998
5/ ASBESTOS REMOVAL
very year there are thousands of asbestos related deaths. Asbestos fibres accumulate in the lungs therefore several diseases can occur, among these are two main types of cancer:
mesothelioma (considered to be almost exclusively related to asbestos exposure)
lung cancer (a malignant tumour of the bronchi).
The 10 occupations found to have the highest risk of mesothelioma for males were:
Metal plate workers
Vehicle body builders
Plumbers and Gas fitters
Sheet metal workers
Electrical plant operators
Construction workers, and
The Asbestos Procedure is an invaluable document aimed at responsible managers which outlines all aspects of dealing with the three main types of asbestos found in the workplace. The procedure assists employers to comply with The Control of Asbestos at Work Regulations (introduced from May 2004) which place a duty on those responsible for commercial premises to manage the asbestos contained in them.
What is this?This is a written procedure which explains the arrangements for identifying and controlling asbestos in the workplace. A PDF of the procedure is available to download (see attached), please use it in conjunction with the attached Risk Assessment Form and Toolbox Talk.
What is asbestos?
Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral. It has been used in industry for decades because of its high resistance to heat and chemicals. There are three main types of asbestos:
Some basic facts regarding the control of asbestos:
Asbestos is only dangerous when disturbed. If it is safely managed and contained, it doesn’t present a health hazard.
Do not remove asbestos unnecessarily; removing asbestos can be more dangerous than leaving it in place and managing it.
Not all asbestos materials present the same risk; the measures that need to be taken for controlling the risks from materials such as pipe insulation are different than those needed for asbestos cement.
Do not assume that you need to call in a specialist in every case (for example, you can inspect your own building rather than employ a surveyor as long as you have received suitable training). However, if you do contact a surveyor, ascertain that they are competent.
If you are unsure about whether certain materials contain asbestos you can presume they do and treat them accordingly.
Remember that the duty to manage is primarily about putting into place the practical steps necessary to protect maintenance workers, and others, from the risk of exposure to asbestos fibres. The responsible manager should not focus solely on the removal of all asbestos from his premises.
Where is it found?
The most common use of asbestos is in the following products:
Sprayed asbestos fire protection: Usually found on steelwork in buildings, the spray contains80-90% asbestos. It tends to be dusty, weak, friable and easily damaged. Dust release can be very high.
Asbestos cement building products: This is grey, hard and very brittle and contains 10–15% asbestos. It has been widely used for the manufacture of corrugated roof sheeting, rainwater guttering and pipework, roofing tiles and slates, soffit boards, flat sheeting, partitioning, door facings, water pipework and cisterns, etc. Dust release is negligible unless the cement bonding the fibres deteriorates.
Asbestos insulating board: Asbestos board has the appearance of a grey or off-white board or tile. It differs from asbestos cement in that it is a softer material and contains more asbestos which can range from 15–40%. Its main uses have been for fire protection on doors, structural steelwork, protected exits, internal wall cladding, ceilings (in tile or board form), cladding over electrical cabling, and as an insulating layer in composite wall construction and partitions. It is prone to mechanical damage and can therefore easily deteriorate under normal service conditions. The disturbance of this material may create high levels of dust.
Asbestos millboards: Millboards and papers are approaching 100% asbestos and thus contain very little binding agent. When disturbed it is most likely to give rise to substantial dust release.
Textured ceiling finishes (paint and artex): The asbestos content was normally about 4%. Dust release under normal operation is negligible but fibre release can occur if the coating is abraded or otherwise worked upon.
Roofing felt: Roofing felt often contains asbestos paper impregnated with bitumen and is normally coated with sand or chalk. In this case, the asbestos fibre is fully ‘locked up’ in the bitumen and is unlikely, during normal on-site operations, to generate respirable asbestos dust. However, if the bitumen is burnt or removed by solvents then airborne asbestos fibre release may occur.
Floor tiles and coverings: The asbestos content is not normally above 25%. Since the asbestos is ‘locked up’ in the material, dust release under normal use is likely to be negligible unless the tiles have become damaged or worn.
Lagging: All lagging should be treated as containing asbestos unless it is definitely known to be asbestos-free by testing. Often the lagging is protected by cladding or other forms of encapsulation protection and only becomes hazardous when disturbed. The asbestos fibres can easily be released if the material is subject to mechanical abrasion, and is often very dusty if degradation of the material has occurred.
Who is responsible?
The responsible manager must ensure:
An asbestos risk assessment is undertaken to identify all relevant hazards on his/her site (remember to consult architects, employees and safety representatives).
An asbestos management plan is developed. (If no asbestos-containing materials are present, then do nothing other than record why the evidence indicates there is no asbestos present).
The condition of any asbestos and the progress of any control measure is monitored against an agreed timetable.
The management action plan is displayed at suitable locations around the site.
That signage is put into place where asbestos is present.
All employees, contractors and visitors are informed of the asbestos management plan and the relevant hazards and control measures.
The plan is kept under review.
How is an asbestos risk assessment completed?
The person completing the assessment must be trained and deemed competent. He/she will then:
Identify material which he/she thinks may contain asbestos.
Score the materials according to the assessment criteria sheet (see below):
What is the extent of damage?
What is the product type?
Is the surface of the material treated?
How often is the material likely to be disturbed?
How frequently is the area used?
How often does maintenance impact on this area?
Add up all the scores and record the total score on the assessment sheet.
Consider whether corrective action is needed to make the asbestos safe:
If ‘None’ then monitor the conditions and implement the management plan.
If ‘Yes’ or ‘Unsure’ then, if safe to do so, take a sample of the material and take advice from a specialist asbestos contractor.
Does the responsible manager or contractor need an asbestos licence?
An employer or self-employed person who undertakes work with asbestos insulation, asbestos coating or asbestos insulating board may only do so in accordance with a licence issued by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). This requirement is necessary as these three types of the application of the asbestos-containing materials are far more hazardous.
Before any work commences on licensed asbestos, the authorised contractor needs to inform the HSE 14 days prior to any work being carried out.
Any work that is carried out with asbestos cement sheeting does not require the need to notify the HSE, and is therefore not covered under the aforementioned regulations. However, a competent person (authorised contractor) still needs to carry out any work with this material.
Control of Asbestos Regulations 2006
Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974
Management of Health and Safety Regulations 1999
Control of Substances Hazardous to Health 2002