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Health, Safety and Welfare at Work

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Health, Safety and Welfare at Work Health and safety in the workplace is not only the responsibility of the designated Health and Safety Officer, it is the duty of all members of staff to be responsible for the safety of everyone they may have to deal with during the working day; both their colleagues and members of the public. The Health and Safety Executive are a body whose role is to promote safety in the workplace; both by providing information to employers and their employees, and also by ensuring that rules and guidelines are adhered to in everyday practice. According to the Health and Safety Executive (or H&SE), the employer has a responsibility under law to ensure, as far as is reasonably practicable, the employee's health, safety and welfare at work. The employer's duties include: - Making the workplace safe and without risks to health - Ensuring that plant and machinery are safe and that safe systems of work are set and are followed - Ensuring articles and substances are moved, stored and used safely - Providing adequate welfare facilities - Giving the information, instruction, training and supervision necessary for health and safety It is the duty of the employer to assess the risks to the health and safety of his/her staff. This will often necessitate a vigorous and thorough inspection of the workplace, paying particular attention to any piece of equipment or plant and any working practice that may be hazardous to the safety of staff. ...read more.


It is impossible to plan for all eventualities; people are after all, only human and liable to make mistakes. Equipment can still go wrong even after the minutest inspection and then there is what an insurer might term "an act of god"; a freak gust of wind or a bolt of lightning. In these eventualities people can still be injured or even killed. To try and minimise the damage that cannot be trained or planned for, the employer has a responsibility to provide Personal Protective Equipment. There are many different items of PPE. Some protect against high noise levels, some against extremes of temperature, some against falling objects and some serve to make the wearer more visible to other members of staff. These may include: - Steel-toed boots - Gloves - Eye goggles - Hard hats - Knee pads - Ear protectors/plugs - High visibility clothing The wearing of Personal Protective Equipment is a last line of defence against injury in the workplace and should never negate good working practices and proper safety training. Sometimes even after all the above has been provided by the conscientious employer to safeguard the health and safety of his/her staff, accidents still occur and people are still injured. In this eventuality, it is the responsibility of the employer to record any accident in the official company injury book. The employer also has a duty to report any such incident to the relevant authority and to take steps to ensure that anything possible should be done to prevent a reoccurrence of the event that led to the injury. ...read more.


CDM's also apply to all demolition and structural dismantling work. Responsibilities of the Client: - Appoint a planning supervisor in sufficient time for him/her to be able to draw up a suitable health and safety plan, prior to the commencement of the project. - This planning supervisor must be provided with all relevant information regarding the health and safety issues specific to this particular site. For example, access to the site may be close to a major road junction which requires extra sign-posting. There may be high-voltage power lines crossing the site. - Appoint a principal contractor. The principal contractor must be given sufficient time to be able to develop a suitable construction-phase health and safety plan. This must be done before any construction work begins. - The client must be reasonably satisfied that all those who are appointed are competent to carry out all their health and safety responsibilities. - The client must ensure that the health and safety file that was compiled during the construction process is kept readily available for inspection by anyone who may want to conduct any further construction work on the site in the future. The client may choose to appoint an agent to act on their behalf. In these circumstances the client must ensure that any person appointed in this capacity is fully competent and qualified to carry out their health and safety responsibilities. The Health and Safety Executive must be informed of any such appointment before work commences. 1 ...read more.

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