employees under UK law,

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Health and safety should be a priority in every workplace. Employers have a legal duty to protect the safety of their employees under UK law, so no chances can be taken. If you aren’t sure what steps are needed to fulfil that requirement, here are some of the fundamentals.

Identifying and mitigating hazards with risk assessments

Risk assessments are the foundational step in any health and safety process. Identification of hazards is crucial to be able to reduce the risk associated with them, so thorough assessments are needed throughout the workplace or site.

Once risks have been found, proper strategies and solutions should be implemented to mitigate each one specifically. This could the provision of PPE for workers, safety precautions such as fall protection, or advanced training for particular hazards. Risk assessments should be ongoing and hazards monitored and evaluated regularly.

Proper use of personal protective equipment (PPE)

PPE is a vital part of any health and safety program. You not only need to ensure you have the correct gear and equipment but also that it’s used appropriately as recommended by the manufacturer. Improper use can render any PPE ineffective and endanger both the individual using it and others around them.

Items such as face masks, coveralls and gloves serve to reduce the chance of infections spreading in medical settings, while safety goggles, boots and hard hats are essential on most building sites. PPE solutions should be crafted to suit the demands of the industry you work in. Generic equipment doesn’t quite cut it in most cases.

Precautions when working at heights

Certain industries rely on workers performing their duties from a height, which brings added risk and safety concerns. Agriculture, forestry, arboriculture, construction and roofing professionals face the risk of falling daily.

As such, adequate fall protection is needed to maintain their safety and security. Harnesses and quality rope from suppliers such as RS are critical here to suspend members of the workforce in the event of a fall. Specialist training can also help to inform the whole team about the dangers of working from a height.

Safe material handling and lifting practices

Even the most benign tasks and processes can be a threat to the workforce. Simply lifting a box with poor technique or handling chemicals inappropriately can cause serious injury or harm to employees.

Ensuring safe practices span your operations from end to end is one of the best ways to mitigate the risks. Call for accountability from each and every one of your staff because this can help to foster a strong safety culture. Consistent training reinforces proper form, techniques and procedures across the work environment.

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