Updates To Regulations

HSE are not planning any major update to regulations this year but as always the devil is in the detail.

If you are not sure that you are aware of the latest in rules and regulation changes why not book a refresher course to bring your supervisory staff up to speed. Courses can be tailored to suit your work environment and situation making them totally relevant to your business.

Cost of these types of courses is much less than the cost of even a minor accident and associated investigations / downtime / loss of business operation for investigations.

Portable ladder regulations have changed so if you are looking at buying a new ladder now you will not find the 3 categories of ladder that we are used to. Ladders now are categorised as 2 different types. Both comply with EN 131 and are called Professional and Non-professional. If you are buying new ladders make sure they comply with this new rating and get the 'professional' one. Both are rated at 150kg maximum vertical load but the professional one is tested much more rigorously and will last longer. You do NOT need to replace existing ladders if they are in good serviceable condition. Do make sure all your employees are adequately trained in the safe use of portable ladders and working at height.

As from 12 February there is an updated HSE approved first aid kit that complies with BS 8599 standards. If you are buying new first aid kits for your work premises the best thing is to buy the new ones. which have slight changes to the contents. You can, as always, do your own risk assessment and have kits made up to suit your particular work situation, but it may well be easier to buy standard BS complient kits which will suffice unless you have a particular risk that requires certain contents in your kits. Existing 'old' style first aid kits will still be available for a year and current ones are still accpetable. It is at the time of replacing the new ones should be considered.

Supervisors / managers responsibilities

Lift truck operator refresher training is always a contentious issue. L117 rider operator training guidance is very specific that refresher training should be undertaken at the appropriate time. There is no specific period, our certificates advise 5 year maximum time period, but it should be reviewed in light of various factors. These would include: near misses or actual accident, sloppy driving and / or damage to goods / loads, supervisory assessment shows procedures are not up to advised industry standards. Refresher training is not all about 'getting an updated certificate' but more about showing due diligence by management, updating to latest techniques and improving work motivation for your workforce

There is also a need for their work to be supervised to ensure that standards of operation and safety are not being compromised in the pursuit of efficiency and time scales. Training for this type of work is based on management requirements and not operational skills as a machine operator. Are your managers and supervisors adequately trained for this type of work? If not get them trained, it is cheaper than a prosecution following an accident.

Do you keep records of all the training your employees do. Good records are always a good foundation to build suitability and quality of training on.

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