Monthly Archives: June 2017

Tips to Ensure a Safe Environment for Contractors and Others Affected by Joint Work Activities

Tips to Ensure a Safe Environment for Contractors and Others Affected by Joint Work Activities

1. Undertake a joint risk assessment with all parties involved in the work and make it site specific. Look at environmental factors such as ground conditions, utility cables that are present, and any other hazards that could cause a problem. Agree on the necessary controls to be implemented – it’s a good idea to write down who will be responsible for doing what.

2. Only allow trained workers to undertake the work activity – ask for proof of this from any contractors you take on.

3. Ensure effective sharing of information between all parties, such as how the work will be undertaken safely and who can be contacted in the event of an emergency.

4. Verify before work starts that the correct machinery, work equipment and safety equipment will be used. Check that appropriate signage has been put up in public areas to warn others of the work to be undertaken.

5. If working in or near public areas, ensure all parties clear up after the work finishes and take all equipment and rubbish away. Do a final sweep of the area to ensure this has happened.

Remember – contractors need to take steps to ensure that their work activities do not affect the safety or health of any other persons, including neighbouring companies or members of the public.

Contact us if you require assistance.


Weather Warning Heat Health Watch – Level 3

There is a 90 % probability of heatwave conditions between 0900 on Monday and 0900 on Thursday in parts of England.

Advice: Stay out of the sun. Keep your home as cool as possible – shading windows and shutting them during the day may help. Open them when it is cooler at night. Keep drinking fluids. If there’s anybody you know, for example an older person living on their own, who might be at special risk, make sure they know what to do.

What is a heatwave?

Although there is no official definition of a ‘heatwave’ in the UK, the term can be used to describe an extended period of hot weather relative to the expected conditions of the area at that time of year.

The heat-health watch system comprises four levels of response based upon threshold maximum daytime and minimum night-time temperatures. These thresholds vary by region, but an average threshold temperature is 30 °C by day and 15 °C overnight for at least two consecutive days. These temperatures can have a significant effect on people’s health if they last for at least two days and the night in between.

  • Level one: This is the minimum alert and is in place every year from 1 June until 15 September, which is the period that heat-health alerts are likely to be issued. This minimum alert simply means that people should be aware of what to do if the alert level is raised.
  • Level two: Issued when there is a high chance that the threshold will be exceeded within the next few days
  • Level three: Issued when the thresholds have been exceeded
  • Level four: Issued when a prolonged hot spell becomes severe

Why is hot weather an issue?

Many people enjoy hot weather but there can be serious health consequences from too much heat and vulnerable groups are particularly at-risk in prolonged hot spells.

What effect can a prolonged hot spell have?

Hot weather, especially when prolonged, with warm nights, can have effects on people’s health and on certain infrastructure. To aid preparation and awareness before and during a prolonged hot spell, a heatwave plan has been created by Public Health England in association with the Met Office and other partners. It recommends a series of steps to reduce the risks to health from prolonged exposure to severe heat for:

  • The NHS, local authorities, social care, and other public agencies
  • Professionals working with people at risk
  • Individuals, local communities and voluntary groups

Contact us, should you have any queries regarding your risk assessments.


Ensure Workers Are Kept Safe When Working on Roofs

To avoid serious or even fatal accidents, remember that any work undertaken on a roof needs to be carefully planned and then only undertaken by trained, competent workers.

5 Tips to Help Ensure Workers Are Kept Safe When Working on Roofs:

  1. Do a risk assessment to identify the hazards inherent in the work. This might include falling through holes or fragile parts of the roof, or falling from the edges. Always aim to prevent a fall off the edge by using guardrails and toe boards, and label any fragile roof areas and prevent people from walking on them.
  1. Work out how to minimise the distance and consequence if a fall was to occur, by considering both individual and collective controls to determine which one might be most appropriate or if a combination of both would be better. Individual measures relate to how one person might be protected, such as by using a suitable harness, and collective protection could include the use of guard rails or nets.
  1. Inform all workers of the plan for undertaking the work safely, and the way in which the job is to be carried out. Include information such as the correct access and egress points, the location of any fragile areas such as roof lights, and the equipment – for example a harness – that is to be used. Make sure this information is also given to subcontractors.
  1. Ensure that workers are competent to do the job, and have received appropriate work at height training.
  1. Determine how workers will access roofs safely by providing items such as access hatches, fixed scaffold towers and mobile access equipment for them to use.

Contact us should you require assistance.


Tips to Ensure your Workplace is Safe for Members of the Public

There are many accidents each year involving members of the public on workplace premises. Take action now to make sure your sites are safe for visitors to enter.

Tips to Ensure your Workplace is Safe for Members of the Public:

  1. Do a risk assessment to identify where your hazards are that could harm someone new or unfamiliar to the premises. Think about the layout of the site, and how someone could be run over or knocked into by workplace transport or machinery. Consider the work environment – are there trip hazards, pot holes or projecting objects that could injure someone? Remove these or draw attention to them with barriers and bright paint.
  2. Train workers in the dangers surrounding visitors on site – for example, make them aware of the speed limit in yards – and ensure that they know the safe system of work when undertaking activities. Induct visitors to site before they are allowed onto the premises, and give verbal information to short-term visitors such as customers on anything pertinent to their health and safety.
  3. Conduct regular site inspections to identify any hazards such as missing barriers and broken or loose floor tiles. Record these items and follow them up to ensure they have been rectified.
  4. Provide adequate signage to ensure visitors know where to go, and to highlight dangers such as ‘no go’ areas for non-employees.
  5. Ensure there is clear segregation for pedestrians from workplace transport at all times. Use designated walkways, barriers and lines painted on the floor as appropriate.

Contact us if you require assistance.