5 Tips to Ensure Your Workers are Adequately Trained
- Undertake a risk assessment to establish where your training needs lie – you might find that this process identifies hazards which would be best controlled by staff training, either in place of other controls or alongside them. Work out whether the training would be best given on the job (for example, in relation to using machinery), in a classroom (perhaps in relation to theory) or as a mixture of both.
- Keep training records of who has received which training and when – this will help to identify when refresher training is needed.
- Always consider staff training requirements when new work conditions arise or the environment changes – for example, when new equipment is introduced, people change jobs or work is done outside rather than inside.
- Ensure the training is carried out by competent people who understand the nature of the hazards involved. Provide written instructions where necessary for workers to refer back to, for example, for complex procedures.
- Check with staff after the training has been given that they understood it, and that it was suitable for their needs. Use any feedback given to help you plan your next training sessions.
Training is one area that you cannot afford to get wrong – make sure your staff know what health and safety risks can be found in their roles, and how they are supposed to manage those risks to avoid coming to any harm.
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5 Tips to Ensure the Safety of Your Workers during Loading Operations
- Make sure you have completed a thorough risk assessment to identify how and when workers could be hurt. Look at every step of the procedure – from vehicle movements, loading equipment and the loading operation itself to identify where the hazards are.
- Produce a loading plan for every operation, and make sure that the driver of the vehicle knows how the loading operation was performed so that he or she knows how it is to be safely unloaded at the delivery site.
- Always load vehicles on level ground, and secure any ramps to stop them moving. Verify with the manufacturer that ramps can take the weight of the load before using them. Make sure the lorry’s brakes are on, and that stabilisers are used.
- Train workers to use all loading equipment properly – from forklift trucks and vehicles to access ladders and hoists.
- Always make sure that the load is secured properly, otherwise it may shift within the vehicle during transit which could make the vehicle overturn. Pack it properly and use racking, chains or straps (and sheeting if loose contents such as soil could escape).
The heavy equipment often used in loading operations can cause a serious accident or a fatality if not used properly and in a safe manner. Make sure you review your loading procedures to ensure they meet the grade.
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Under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, all employers have a duty to protect the health and safety of persons not in their employment, which includes members of the public. It’s vital that companies consider how the public could come to harm within their work environment – be that children at play who may touch things within their reach, or anyone who may be unaware of the work surroundings and associated hazards.
6 Tips to Help Keep Visitors Safe on Your Premises
- Complete a risk assessment to identify anything that could cause harm to someone not familiar with your premises. Walk through your site with a view to looking with a ‘fresh pair of eyes’ – take newer members of staff with you as they too may be able to point things out that perhaps might have been overlooked.
- Think about how visitors could slip or trip on the premises. Check nothing protrudes from your door surrounds that could trip someone, and that steps are not slippery (coat with anti-slip paint if they are). Make sure you have a good housekeeping schedule in place, and that boxes and other items are not left lying around. Check the car park for potholes and repair them.
- Consider how someone could be hurt by a falling item. Check that stored items which visitors can access are placed correctly – use racking that is securely fixed to the wall, and where feasible don’t store things above head height. Regularly check internal partition walls and false walls to ensure they are in good repair.
- Keep your vehicles away from pedestrians by providing segregated walkways inside and outside buildings.
- Prevent anyone being able to fall from height. Fit window restrictors and guard rails on walkways.
- Stop anyone being hurt by electricity. Use socket covers in accessible areas to prevent little fingers entering sockets. Don’t leave any tools lying around – I once found a knife in the milk aisle of a supermarket which an employee had been using to unwrap packaging, and had forgotten to remove.
Make sure that all areas which the public can access are regularly inspected, and that control measures are implemented for any identified hazards.
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