"Health & Safety"
Ladies and gentlemen welcome to this website and to my small part of it. If I may introduce myself I am Bob Morrison the Match Day Safety Officer and Health and Safety Manager at Wolverhampton Wanderers FC formerly with Crystal Palace FC and Wimbledon FC at Selhurst Park. In this day and age of a "litigation aware" society, "Health & Safety" is becoming more and more important. If you can provide "due diligence" then this will go a long way to negating the possible claim against you. The current legislation provides that all employers of more than 5 people must have in place a "Health & Safety" policy and certain other specific documents in place in order that you can comply. As this site is directed towards sports clubs and the like we will attempt to provide updates to the legislation as and when it may affect you, the people in the industry. The value of keeping simple records is important for example a member of staff is using a 36" petrol mower he cuts his hand on the blade causing a nasty injury, which puts him off work for 3 weeks. You being the dutiful employer complete the RIDDOR (Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations) submit it to the local authority Health & Safety department. They decide that the incident is worthy of an investigation and you may well be asked some of the following questions:
1. Where is the service record for the machine? 2. Have the manufacturers service intervals been adhered to? 3. Are suitable guards in place? 4. Are the manufacturers guards in place? 5. What training has the employee had on this particular piece of equipment? 6. Has a "Risk Assessment" been completed for this piece of equipment? 7. Where is the written "Equipment Safety Checklist"? 8. Could PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) have assisted the operator? 9. What is your policy on PPE? 10. Was the employee working on his own, do you have a policy on "Lone Working"?
All these questions and many others will be asked and you will be expected to have the answers. If you do not submit the RIDDOR form and the powers that be find out through alternative means then you will have even more questions to answer. The fines in cases of successful prosecution can be "Draconian". We are becoming a more safety conscious society, people expect to be protected at work and they have the right to expect that from you the employer. The vast majority of companies now know that they are going to be asked for "Risk Assessments", "Method Statements" etc. before they begin work. You should always ask for them before they initiate any work for you, and make sure that they are "site specific" and not "generic". Always query anything you are not sure about, if they know what they are about, they will be only too pleased to help and set your mind at rest. Future articles will examine specific areas of the legislation, which is applicable to the industry. If you have any specific requests please use the email form which is available on the ???????????? page.