Monthly Archives: November 2014

Avoid a £500,000 Fine for Waste Offences: 7 Tips to Help You Stay Compliant

The priority in which wastes should be managed is detailed in the waste hierarchy: reduce, then re-use, then recover, then lastly, send to landfill. But in order to prevent waste, you need to understand what type of waste your business produces, so it’s a good idea to start by carrying out a waste audit – which can range from a walk-through to a more in-depth analysis of what is contained in each bin. You will need to establish the nature of the main waste streams collected and which waste streams are separated, e.g. paper, plastics, metals, biodegradable waste. You can then develop a waste prevention plan, which details how you will improve waste management within your organisation.

7 Top Tips for Managing Waste

  1. Ensure you are familiar with the legal implications of the waste you produce by identifying the specific waste legislation that affects your business.
  2. Ensure that the person, or company, that collects your waste is a registered waste carrier and that you are issued with a waste transfer note which describes the type of waste collected for disposal, how it is contained, the quantity collected and where your waste will be disposed of. Check that the transfer note includes a declaration that you have applied the waste management hierarchy to your waste. Keep a copy of this note for at least 2 years.
  3. Analyse the frequency of your waste collection service for value, as the most common charging method for waste removal is a fixed charge per container removed. This means you will be paying the same amount regardless of how full the container is.
  4. Identify waste minimisation opportunities, where immediate and substantial savings can be achieved by implementing no-cost and low-cost measures. Appoint a waste management champion to drive things forward.
  5. Produce an action plan for reducing wastes and ensure senior management are committed to it.
  6. Communicate your successes to senior managers, workers and interested stakeholders.
  7. Use industry guides, trade association guidance and good practice examples to compare your performance with others in your sector.

Good waste management is fundamental to your company achieving efficient cost savings and will enable you to avoid prosecution. Don’t overlook this important aspect of your business.

Contact us should you require advice.

 

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Driving Licence Update

From January 2015 the paper part of the driving licence will officially disappear as the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) continues its aim to digitise motorists’ records.

The traditional paper tax disc has been replaced by an electronic system from October 2014, which ministers believe will streamline services and save money.

Last October, the Department for Transport launched a review into how to make the DVLA “deliver better services and save money for the taxpayer”.

Stephen Hammond, roads minister, concluded in a report that one of the main reforms would be to “remove the driving licence paper counterpart.”

But what does this mean for the 46 million motorists in Britain, particularly for those who only have the paper component of the licence?

The DVLA says you do not need to take any action. The paper licence will continue to be valid – at least until it needs to renewed.

Those who have an old style paper driving licence issued before the photocard was introduced in 1998, this change won’t affect you, and you should keep your licence.

The next time you need to update your name, address or renew your licence, you will be issued with a photocard only.

Those who have the photocard should continue using it, remembering to renew it when necessary (gov.uk/renew-driving-licence). Motorists could face a £1,000 fine if they are caught with an invalid licence.

The DVLA confirmed that there would be no charge for changing an old style paper licence to a photocard licence with a change of details.

However, once the motorist has the photocard licence, they will have to pay £20 each time it is renewed (every 10 years). Paper licences do not need to be renewed.

Anyone over the age of 70 will need to renew their licence every three years, updating it with any medical conditions. This is free of charge. If a driver updated their licence with a change of address, name or notified a medical conditions then the updated licence issued will be a photocard licence.

Holiday-makers hiring a vehicle abroad should speak with the hire company before leaving. The old style paper licence will continue to be valid and we are able to confirm to a company, with the driver’s permission, the driving entitlements they hold. However, drivers may wish to check with the car hire company their requirements for proof of driving entitlement before travelling.

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Ensure Your Lifting Equipment is Thoroughly Examined

A thorough examination is a systematic and detailed examination of the lift and all its associated equipment, carried out by a competent person. Its aim is to detect any defects, which are, or might become, dangerous. The competent person is required to issue you with a report highlighting any defects and, if appropriate, the enforcing authority, so that appropriate remedial action can be taken. Whilst similar to an MOT inspection, it should not be confused with preventive maintenance. Begin by clarifying what lifting equipment you own. Under the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 (LOLER), lifting equipment includes any equipment that is used at work for lifting or lowering loads, e.g. forklift trucks, goods and passenger lifts, and includes attachments, e.g. slings. Lifting attachments are included because they play the most safety-critical roles and are more prone to damage throughout their working lives.

5 Top Tips for Ensuring the Safety of Your Lifting Equipment If you own lifting equipment, you must:

  1. Ensure you maintain the lifting equipment so that it is safe to use.
  2. In addition, ensure the lifting equipment is thoroughly examined at the correct intervals: lifting equipment used for lifting persons must be thoroughly examined at least every six months; lifting accessories must be examined every six months; all other lifting equipment must be thoroughly examined at least every 12 months and every time exceptional circumstances occur, e.g. an accident involving lifting equipment, after extended periods without proper servicing or maintenance or after long periods out of use/after substantial modification of the equipment.
  3. Select and instruct a competent person to carry out the thorough examination and keep them informed of any changes in the operating conditions.
  4. Make relevant documentation available to the competent person, e.g. maintenance records, manufacturer’s information.
  5. Act quickly to remedy any defects. If you are notified of a serious/significant defect, you should take the lifting equipment out of operation until it has been remedied. Keep reports of thorough examination for at least two years or until the next report, whichever is longer.

Make sure your lifting equipment is thoroughly examined. Failure to comply can leave you open to prosecution, invalidate your insurance and lead to an accident due to faulty equipment.

Contact us should you require guidance.

 

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