Regulations for safety at work
The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 provides that there be Regulations and an approved Codes of Practice which impose such civil liabilities, if breached these can give rise to a personal injury claim. The Regulations are:
- Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999
- Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992
- The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998
- Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992
- Manual Handling Regulations 1992 and the handling Directive
- The Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment) Regulations 1992
- The Work at Height Regulations 2005
- The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007
The Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992
The Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 cover a wide range of basic health, safety and welfare issues and apply to most workplaces.
These Regulations are designed to protect the health and safety of all employees in the workplace and ensure that adequate welfare are provided for people at work.
The Regulations are intended to ensure that the health, safety and welfare of all employees are met, including people with disabilities. Many of the Regulations require things to be ‘suitable’ and the Regulations make it clear that ‘suitable’ means for everyone, including people with disabilities. Therefore if necessary parts of the workplace, including doors, workstations etc. should be made accessible for disabled people.
- Maintenance of the workplace, equipment, devices and systems.
- Adequate ventilation
- Cleanliness and waste materials
- Room dimensions and space
- Workstations and seating
- Conditions of floors and traffic routes
- Falls or falling objects
- Windows and transparent doors, gates and walls
- Windows, skylights and ventilators
- Organisation of traffic routes
- Doors and gates
- Escalators and moving walkways
The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998
The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 require risks to employee’s health and safety, from equipment that they use at work, to be prevented or controlled.
They require that equipment provided for use at work is:
- Suitable for the intended use;
- Safe for use, maintained in a safe condition and, in certain circumstances, inspected to ensure this remains the case;
- Used by only people who have received adequate information, instruction and training; and
- Accompanied by suitable safety measures e.g. protective devices, markings, warnings etc.
Work equipment means any machinery, appliance, apparatus, tool or installation for use at work.
The Regulations contain specific duties concerning the use of mobile work equipment, such as forklift trucks.
The Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992 (‘PPE’)
This is defined within the Regulations as “all equipment (including clothing to protect against the weather) which is intended to be worn or held by a person at work and which protects him against one or more risks to his health or safety.”
For example gloves, hard hats , high visibility clothing, safety helmets, goggles, visors, boiler suits, chain mail aprons / gauntlets/ gloves, safety boots, safety harnesses etc.
The employer should supply and ensure the use of PPE to their employees where there is a risk to their health or safety which cannot be controlled in any other way.
PPE provided should to be:
- Properly assessed before use to ensure it is suitable;
- Maintained and stored properly;
- Provided with instructions on how to use it safely;