As Business people we know that Statutory Health & Safety requirements have to be met and the legal necessity to ensure compliance rests squarely with the Proprietor / Partners / Directors of each and every company.
Two main pieces of legislation – The Health and Safety at Work Act (HASW) 1974 and the Management of Health and Safety at Work Act (MHSW) 1999 govern what is required by each and every business within the United Kingdom in order to comply with the government legislation on health and safety within the workplace.
Some parts of the legislation are very specific about what you have to do, however some can appear to be very general. They give instruction requiring the company/organisation to do what is ‘reasonably practicable’ to ensure Health & Safety, unfortunately it is sometimes a grey area as to what is ‘reasonably practicable’.
The Health & Safety Commission (HSC) and the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) do publish very good guidelines and guidance leaflets to assist you to decide what this all means in practice.
It is important to note that – All employers must have a written, up-to-date Health & Safety policy if they employ five or more staff (including part-time staff); they must have completed all the necessary Risk Assessments, recorded the findings and ensured actions taken to comply with the legislative requirements. They must display the current Health & Safety Law poster, with the appropriate sections completed or give out the HSE leaflet, also display a current certificate as required by the ‘Employers’ liability (compulsory insurance) Act 1969 if the employ anyone.
You must have procedures in place to notify on certain types of injury, occupational disease and provide information, instruction and training to eliminate the possibility of accidents or incidents.
It is worth noting that every year about 600 people are killed at work and several hundred more are injured or suffer ill health. Many of these accidents occur because of a lack of knowledge and understanding of good practice and safe working procedures. Statutory Health & Safety requirements have to be met, but accidents also cost money and time, people off work, material costs and damage to buildings, plants or products. These costs are not normally covered by insurance and can, if serious enough, jeopardise the stability of a business and the future of all concerned.
Ensure you have the correct policies in place, signed and dated
Our health & safety system and manual will give you a good understanding of what is required; not only to comply with the statutory regulations, but also protect the health of yourself, your colleagues and everyone who enters your work environment. We encourage you to take the time and study the contents and ensure they are reviewed on a regular basis.
Our system is designed to assist you in removing some of the obstacles and hurdles faced in your endeavour to comply with all the statutory legislative regulations, both the current and future laws. We will make it our business to allow you to get on with your business.
Third Party working
Traceability is the key to ensuring correct records are maintained for any work when using a third party (or acting as a third party) contractor.
Permits must be issued for different aspects of the work undertaken and these must be signed off when the work is finished and filed for future reference.
You must also obtain from the third party certain documents i.e. Insurance details, H&S policy statements, method and risk assessments, certification of suitable training, etc.
They must also provide written confirmation that all and any equipment they use on site is checked and suitable for purpose.
We suggest you start to build a Third Party record file and this will include the information you obtain from those that you are acting as third parties for.
Who do we mean as a third party?
• Office cleaners
• Window cleaners
• Repair and maintenance contractors
• External gardeners
• Self employed staff (especially if on contract work)
• Sub-contractors (any trade)
• Main contractors (any trade or company size).
It is better to start now and get into the habit of obtaining and asking for the information before any incident or accident occurs and the investigations start.
To contact us, please call 0333 2400 308 or email us.