Understanding Health and Safety in the Business Workplace
Health and safety are the crucial factor for the workplace of the business. The healthy and safe workplace helps to motivate the employees which will make them more efficient and productive. The healthy and safe workplace also helps to prevent the probability accidents in the workplace. Unhealthy and unsafe workplace make the employees dull and discourage them to work efficiently in the workplace. Unhealthy and unsafe workplace also causes serious injury for the employees. I have been chosen Arcadia Group as the matter of study for this assignment. In this assignment there are four tasks those tasks are about explaining the legal requirements and regulations for ensuring the health, safety and security of those employed in business, the requirements for a healthy and safe workplace, as applied to the physical environment and equipment used in Arcadia Group, the roles and responsibilities for health and safety of key personnel in Arcadia Group and the Final task is to plan a risk assessment for Arcadia Group’s administrative work environment.
Explain the legal requirements and regulations for ensuring the health, safety and security of those employed in business
I have been performing as the Health and Safety assistant in Arcadia Group. In this task I am going to discuss about legal requirements and regulations for health, safety and security in the business.
Health and Safety at Work Act (HSWA) 1974
This Act places a legal duty on employers to ensure, so far as reasonably practicable, the health, safety, and welfare of employees, and to ensure that employees and others are kept safe (Oswald, 1981).
Under the Act you have an obligation to ensure any potential risk of work-related violence is eliminated or controlled.
If you have five or more employees you must have a written health and safety policy statement, setting out how you manage health and safety in your organization.
Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations (MHSWR) 1999
According to Holt and Andrews (1993), these Regulations require employers to consider the health and safety risks to employees and to carry out a risk assessment to protect employees from exposure to reasonably foreseeable risks. Those risks include work-related violence. A risk assessment is an examination to determine what hazards exist in the workplace; establish the significance of the risk;identify and implement prevention and control measures; produce a clear management action plan.
If you have five or more employees you must record the significant findings of your risk assessment and any groups of employees identified by it as being especially at risk (Lloyd, Byars, and Leslie Rue, 2008). In addition, employers have a requirement to appoint competent people, set up emergency procedures, provide information to employees and work together with employers sharing the same workplace.
Employees, on the other hand, are required to use the information/training they have received, and to report dangerous situations/shortcomings in health and safety arrangements.
Hierarchy of control:-
The law requires you, as an employer, to carry out risk reduction using a clear hierarchy of controls (Lawrence, 1976). Where it is reasonably practicable to do so, you should always adopt the following controls in descending order of priority:
1.Eliminate the risk completely by removing the hazard, e.g. arrange for a competent security company to handle your cash-in-transit procedures; exclude known troublemakers.
2.Where elimination is not possible or reasonably practicable in the circumstances, you should substitute a hazardous activity or process with one which is less hazardous or use improved equipment or technical solutions that reduces the level of risk, e.g. ensure that high-value goods are effectively tagged; use CCTV or improved surveillance by staff.
3.If this is not possible you should redesign the equipment or work activity to reduce the risks, eg arrange for cash handling to be carried out in a secure area or when the premises are closed to the public rather than in front of customers; redesign the layout of the workplace to give better lines of sight and better CCTV coverage.
4.If redesign is not possible it may be reasonably practicable to physically remove exposed people from risk, e.g. help to provide safe transport home for staff working late.
5.Finally, the employer should put in place controls such as training, safe systems of work and personal protective measures.
The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR) 1995
Under these Regulations, employers must make a report to the Incident Contact Centre in the event of an accident to an employee resulting in death, major injury or absence from work for three or more days (Oswald, 1981). Incidents involving members of the public which result in them being taken directly to hospital must also be reported. This includes violent incidents that result in physical injury. However, RIDDOR does not cover threats and verbal abuse.
Safety Representatives and Safety Committees Regulations 1977
Safety Representatives nominated by recognized trade unions represent all staff on all matters of health and safety and can be an effective way of reducing the likelihood of accidents and ill health (Lloyd, Byars, and Leslie Rue, 2008).
Under the above Regulations, employers are legally required to consult with any nominated representatives in their workplaces.
Safety representatives can take up any issues of concern and they have legal rights to:
raise health and safety complaints with management; investigate hazards and complaints;
inspect workplaces;investigate accidents/incidents,obtain information and facilities from employers/inspectors to help them carry out the safety representative role;
insist on safety committees.
Under the Health and Safety (Consultation with Employees) Regulations 1996, employers must inform and consult with employees on all matters relating to their health and safety.
The Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992
According to Stringer, (1968) these regulations address common factors in workplace accidents such as the maintenance of the workplace, ventilation, the temperature of indoor workplaces, lighting, cleaning and waste materials, room dimensions and space, and the condition of floors and traffic routes.
Floors and traffic routes, should have no holes, slopes or be uneven or slippery, and must have effective means of drainage where necessary (Palmer, 1989). They must also be free from obstructions.
The workplace regulations also cover falls or falling objects, washing facilities, escalators and doors and gates.
The Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992
The regulations specify that so far as is reasonably practicable, each employer must avoid the need for his employees to undertake any manual handling operations at work which involve a risk of their being injured (Oswald, 1981). Where it is not reasonably practicable to avoid the need for manual handling, a suitable risk assessment must be carried out of all manual handling operations.
The risk assessment in question must take into account the nature of the task, and the nature of the load being handled, the working environment and also the capabilities of the individual.
The Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992
These regulations state that every employer shall ensure that suitable personal protective equipment is provided to employees who may be exposed to risk to their health and safety while at work (Lawrence, 1976).
Such personal protective equipment that is provided must be assessed as being suitable and must be properly maintained. The employer must also take all reasonable steps to ensure that any personal protective equipment provided to employees is properly used.
All employers employing five or more employees must also have a written health and safety policy, which must be brought to the notice of all employees. The employer must also ensure that the health and safety of persons other than employees who use the premises are protected.
Describe the requirements for a healthy and safe workplace, as applied to the physical environment and equipment used in Arcadia Group
Health and safety are necessary at the workplace. According to Holt and Andrews (1993), the physical environment and equipment used in the Arcadia Group as the requirement of health and safety are going to be discussed in this part of the assignment.
Physical Environment and Equipment
Moving objects- According to Stringer, (1968) moving objects should be carried carefully as they can herm other product and equipment at the workplace. The moving objects include such as trolleys, hand truck etc. these are used to transfer different product within the workplace and to the shipping station of the company. These objects should be carried carefully as they are heavy in use and any mistake of using it may cause serious damage to the employees or other objects of the business. Arcadia Group use these moving objects so carefully as they don’t cause any harm to others.
Damaged items- Damaged items of the equipment in the operational department may harm individuals (Oswald, 1981). The damage items such as bulb, mirror, steel may cause injury to the employees of the organization. Arcadia Group is concern about its damage items and make sure that they properly clear the damaged items at the workplace to secure the health of the employees.
Falling objects- According to Holt and Andrews (1993), falling objects are basically heavy equipment which should not be occupied on the top of the shelf. If this heavy object falls from up, they it can injure the employees and or may defect itself or other things. This heavy equipment should be placed at the bottom of the shelf to ensure the safety of the employees. Arcadia Group placed its heavy equipment on appropriate shelf.
Sharp edges- Sharp edges mean the edges of the tables, chairs, corner of machines or even the edges of tiles etc (Lloyd, Byars, and Leslie Rue, 2008). These things are hazards to the employees as they can injure the employees and cause working brake done in the workplace. Arcadia Group properly maintain the sharp edges of its equipment to keep its employees away form injury.
Hand tools- The hand tools such as knifes, cutter etc. which cause injury to the employees should not be kept in the drawers and table to ensure they are not in the way of anyone or just lying around waiting to cause an injury to anyone.
Off-site work- Off site works are the work outside of the operational department. When the employees are going to work outside, they should assess the risk of going outside and make sure that the ongoing tools not harming other employees (Palmer, 1989).
Dampness and mold- Dump causes unhealthy situation at the workplace. It is unhygienic to the employees to the employees and can cause serious favor to the employees (Lawrence, 1976). The workplace should be clear of the dampness for the shake of making it healthy and safe. Arcadia Group ensure damp less environment at its workplace.
Explain the roles and responsibilities for health and safety of key personnel in Arcadia Group
For health and safety, the key personnel have played several roles. In Arcadia Group, there are four job roles of key personnel. Those are operational manager, the head of the operational department, a technician in operational department and a health and safety officer.
The operational manager is responsible for ensuring the health and safety for the employees with in the workplace. The operational manager should continuously verify the working condition of the business and is any problem occurs the he or she should take necessary steps to solve the problems of the working environment (Lloyd, Byars, and Leslie Rue, 2008). The operational manager is the key personnel of a business to maintain the working condition of the business. The operational manager of Arcadia Group ensures the working environment of the organization is safe and healthy for the employees and whoever working in the organization.
According to Stringer, (1968), the head of department is the most important personnel of the organization who manage the whole thing of the department. He or she is responsible to carry out a healthy and safe environment of the business. The role of the head of the department is to ensure all the managers are doing their jobs right and they are in charge or any problems the managers have, as they managers in the operational department have to report to the head of the operational department. They have many roles and responsibilities when it comes to ensuring health and safety in the operational department. One of these roles is that they have to follow all the health and safety laws which are put into place. As being the head of the Arcadia Group I continuously verify the health and safety measures of the business.
According to Stringer, (1968), The operational department's technician plays a key role in maintaining the healthy and safe workplace in the business. The technician helps to prepare the practical equipment that are used for practical along with making up the solutions used in the workplace which help to ensure healthy and safe workplace. Their role also includes instructing and assisting manager with practical skills including workplace demonstrations to the staffs and they have to ensure all the health and safety laws are followed by the managers to be safe. The operational department’s technician of Arcadia Group prepares equipment that help to ensure the healthy and safe workplace for the organization.
Health and safety officers of the organization develop the roles and responsibilities for the operational department and the managers of the operational department follow the roles and responsibilities in order to make the workp0lace safe and healthy (Lawrence, 1976). Often thehealth and safety offices visit each work area and review their risk assessments and assess whether or not they need updated or if they don't need changing. They also list the potential risks and linking them with where this hazard would occur in the workplace and try to that.
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