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Course Notes

Dereck Smith 1 24-Oct-18

Health and Safety Law

Statute and Common law are applicable to Health and Safety. 1



(also known as ‘statutory instruments)

Not debated by Government, but legally binding.

The most important Statute: The Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974
(section # 17 enables new H&S regulations)

Statutes and Regulations written in legal jargon – Approved Codes of Practice and
Guidance notes are easier to understand.

Codes of Practice are issued by the HSC and approved by the Secretary of State. They
provide practicable guidance on the requirements that are set out in legislation.

Codes of Practice are not legally binding but used as a minimum standard against
which judgments can be made in a Court of Law.

Guidance Notes are issued by the HSC or HSE as opinions on good practice. They are
not legally binding but used in court as a minimum standard.

Duties Imposed by Statute on Employers

Legal Duties are also referred to as Legal Standards.

Which are: Absolute duties;

The duty to do what is practicable; and
The duty to take steps that are reasonably practicable.

In addition: The duty to take reasonable care.

(employer & employee alike)

Absolute Duty (Absolute duties use the words ‘Shall’ or ‘Must’.)

Is a statutory duty that the employer must take safety precautions when it is deemed that
risk or injury is inevitable if they do not.
Regulation 5 (1) of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1992 states:
‘every employer shall ensure that work equipment is so constructed or adapted as to be
suitable for the purpose for which it is to be used or provided’.

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Practicable Duties

Is a statutory duty that the employer must take safety precautions ‘so far as is
Meaning that safety precautions must be taken if it is possible to do so despite the fact
that implementation might be difficult, inconvenient or expensive.

Reasonably Practicable Duties

Is a statutory duty that the employer must take safety precautions ‘so far as is
reasonably practicable’.
In this instance the employer has to weigh up the risks involved in a particular situation
against the costs of removing or reducing the risk.


The Duty of Reasonable Care

Section # 7 of the HASAWA 1974 states that it is a statutory duty that every employee
has to demonstrate a standard of care which one would expect from a reasonable person
having regard for the possible consequences of their action.
A higher standard required by Supervisor / Manager.


Traditional judge made law that has not been superceded by Acts of Parliament.
Common law is accumulated case law, which is underpinned by the doctrine of judicial

Everyone owes a duty to everyone else to take reasonable care so as not to cause them
to suffer a reasonably foreseeable loss.

The area of common law most relevant to Health and Safety at work is that of The Tort
of Negligence.

Civil Liability

Arises from an act or omission that the law regards as giving an individual company the
right to present a legal claim.


Is a civil wrong. It allows a person who has suffered loss or damage (Plaintiff) due to
act or omission of another person (the Defendant), to recover damages in the form of
compensation from the defendant.

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Tort of Negligence

If a person fails to take reasonable care, as defined by the main rule of common law,
and this failure results in harm to another, then, that person is negligent.

To succeed in a civil action for The Tort of Negligence:

 The defendant owed him a duty;
 The defendant failed in that duty;
 The breach resulted in loss by injury, disease or death.

Res ipsa Loquitur, ‘Let The Facts Speak For Themselves’ is used occasionally by the
The circumstances being such that they obviously indicate negligence.

Civil Action Based on Breach of Statutory Duty

If the breach of statutory duty results in injury to an employee, the employee may in
some circumstances be able to sue for compensation on the basis of that breach.

But the plaintiff must prove:

 The statute was designed to prevent the loss, injury, disease, or death in
 The defendant was in breach of the statutory duty;
 The breach caused the loss, injury, disease, or death; and
 The plaintiff is the class of person that the statute was designed to protect.


HASAWA 1974 precludes civil liability as a result of breach. The plaintiff must prove
negligence in order to obtain compensation.

The plaintiff has to prove on the ‘Balance of Probabilities’ that the defendant was
negligent or in breach of statutory duty.

Limitation Act 1980

 Actions for damages must be made <3years of date of accident for injuries.
 <3years of the date of diagnosis for industrial diseases.

Employers Duties (Must take reasonable care to protect his employees).

1. Provision & Maintenance of:

 A safe place of work, including safe access and egress;
 A safe system of work;
 Safe plant and equipment; and
 Safe and competent fellow employees.

Wilsons & Clyde Coal Ltd V English 1938

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2. The employer must show the standard of care expected from the reasonable and
prudent employer.

Stokes V Guest Keen and Nettlefolds (GKN) Ltd 1968

3. Relationship between Employer & Employee = Master & Servant.

If an employee, whilst acting in the course of their employment, negligently injures

another employee, then the employer may be liable for the injury.
The injured party would bring their action for damages against the employer on the
grounds that the employer was Vicariously Liable for the negligence of their

Employee’s Duties
An employee has to demonstrate a standard of care one would expect from a reasonable


1. Sole fault of the plaintiff: If it can be shown that the injury was the sole fault of
the employee.

Smith V A. Baveystock & Co Ltd. 1945

2. Volenti Non Fit Injuria: ‘To One Who is Willing No Harm Done’: The employee
agreed to run the risks associated with the employment.

ICI Ltd. V Shatwell 1964

3. The breach of duty did not cause the damage: An employee has to prove that the
breach of statute was predominant cause of their injury
and not their own failure.

Corn V Weir’s Glass (Hanley) Ltd. 1960

4. Contributory Negligence: A partial defence. If a person is injured partly because of

his or her own fault and partly out of fault of another, the
compensation is reduced to the extent that the plaintiff was

Uddin V Associated Portland Cement Manufacturers Ltd. 1965

5. Limitation Act: All civil rights of action must be started within the time limits laid
down by the Limitation Acts 1980.

Davis V Ministry of Defence 1982

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Is to restore the plaintiff to their original position as if the breach had not occurred.

It is easy to calculate the value of damaged property but in the case of injury to people,
the calculation is more complex.
Generally, compensation is calculated by assessing:
 Loss of earnings due to the accident;
 Loss of future earning capacity;
 Medical expenses;
 Cost of specialist assistance, if relevant;
 Pain & suffering;
 Loss of amenity, i.e. The ability to enjoy usual leisure activities; and
 Loss of life expectancy.


Is based on proposals made in the report of the committee on safety and health at work
commonly known as The Robens Report – Published in 1972.

The Robens Report Proposed:

1. The introduction of an enabling act which would place broad general duties on:
 Employers;
 Employees;
 Manufacturers of Industrial Products;
 The Self Employed; and
 Occupiers of Buildings where people worked.

2. The act would provide the framework of Health & Safety legislation.

3. The HSE would replace all other Inspectorates.

4. The formation of a policy making body – the HSC, who would submit proposals to
the Secretary of State after consultation and these would form the content of new

5. HSE Inspectors should be given wider powers, including the issue of improvement
and prohibition notices.

6. Responsibility of management and employees to work together to produce adequate

H & S standards and not that of statute.

The HSC consists of representatives from both sides of industry and local authorities. It
takes over the responsibility for developing Health and Safety policies.

The HSE is appointed by the HSC and is responsible for enforcing legal duties and
providing advice to industry. The HSE Inspectorate enforces the legal standards and
have the power to prosecute.

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Section # 2

Duties of Employers to Employees

1. It shall be the duty of every employer to ensure, so far as is reasonably

practicable, the health and safety and welfare at work of all his employees. An
employer must do this by providing:

2. (a) A safe plant and system of work;

(b) The safe use, handling, storage, and transport of articles and substances;
(c) Necessary information, instruction, training, and supervision;
(d) A safe place of work including safe access and egress;
(e) A safe working environment.

3. An employer with more than five employees has a duty to prepare and revise a
written Health & Safety policy. This must be divided into three sections:
A statement of intent, which shows the employer’s commitment to Health &
The structure of the organisation that has to implement the policy.
The arrangements necessary to implement the policy.

Once a safety policy is completed, it is the duty of the employer to ensure that it is
brought to the employees.

4. The appointment of safety representatives.

5. Provision for employee / management consultation.

6. The appointment of safety committees.

Section # 7

Duties of Employees

It is the duty of every employee whilst at work to take reasonable care for the Health
and Safety of himself and to co-operate with his employer so far as is necessary to
enable them to carryout their statutory duty.

Section # 8

No person shall interfere or misuse anything provided in the interests of H & S.

Section # 9

An employee cannot be charged for anything that is done or provided to meet any
statutory requirements.

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Offences and Penalties

 Convicted by a Magistrates Court can lead to a fine of up to £20,000 for each

offence imposed.
 Convicted by a Crown Court can lead to 2 years imprisonment and/or an
unlimited fine.

Section # 36

Offences due to the fault of other persons, e.g. Junior Management and visitors to the

Where the commission by any person of an offence under any relevant statutory
provisions is due to the act or default of some other person, that person shall be guilty
of the offence, and a person may be charged with and convicted of the offence, by
virtue of this sub section whether or not proceedings are taken against the first

Tesco Stores V Nattrass 1971

Section # 37

Offences by the Corporate Body

When an offence under any of the relevant statutory provisions committed by a body
corporate is provided to have been committed with the consent or connivance of, or to
have been attributed to any neglect on the part of, any director, manager, secretary or
other similar officer of that body corporate or a person who was purporting to act in any
such capacity, he as well as the body corporate shall be guilty of that offence and shall
be liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly.

Armour V Skeen 1977

Section # 40

Onus of providing what is practicable.


Prosecution is the inspector’s ultimate exercise of power and as such, it is used

sparingly and with discretion. The inspector tries to enforce the relevant statutory
provisions through influence, persuasion, education, advice, interpretation and general

It is the duty of the inspector to ensure that people:

 Recognise, understand and accept their statutory obligations.
 Understand and carryout the methods of compliance.
 Investigate and notify accidents, dangerous occurrences, industrial diseases and
 Rectify deficiencies or contraventions of the relevant acts within time limits.

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The inspector tries to achieve the above by:
 Collaborating with management in planning and implementing strategies.
 Influencing management to take the right kind of decisions.
 Provision of factual information regarding Health, Safety & Welfare.

The Powers of Inspectors are defined under Section # 20 of the HASAWA 1974.

An Inspector may:
1. Enter any premises at any time and without a warrant;
2. Employ the police to assist him;
3. Take equipment or materials with him to assist in his investigations;
4. Make examinations and investigations;
5. Direct that items be undisturbed;
6. Take measurements, photographs, and samples;
7. Remove and test any equipment, both on or off site;
8. Take statements, documents or records;
9. Demand the use of facilities and assistance; and
10. Serve improvement and prohibition notices, which may give rise to prosecution.

Improvement Notices: (issued under section # 21 of the HASAWA 1974)

They are issued if the inspector is of the opinion that a person has contravened one or
more statutory provisions and that the contravention is likely to be repeated.

An Improvement Notice states:

 The relevant statutory provisions;
 The reasons for the inspector’s opinions;
 The remedial action required; and
 The period in which it is to be carried out.

A person on whom an Improvement Notice has been served has the right of appeal to an
industrial tribunal within 21 days. If an appeal is lodged, the Improvement Notice is
suspended until the appeal is heard.

Prohibition Notices: (issued under section # 22 of the HASAWA 1974)

They are issued if the inspector is of the opinion that a person or people are at risk of
serious personal injury from an activity.

A Prohibition Notices states:

 The matters giving rise to the risks;
 Any legal contraventions;
 Cessation of the specified activities until remedial action has been taken;
 When cessation should take place.

A person on whom a Prohibition Notice has been served also has the right of appeal to
an industrial tribunal, however, because the inspector is of the opinion that risk of
serious personal injury is involved, the Prohibition Notice is not suspended.

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Industrial Tribunals

Consist of a Legally Qualified Chairman appointed by the Lord Chancellor. And two
lay members, one from a Trade Union and the other from Management.

Industrial Tribunals deal with the following:

 Appeals against enforcement notices;
 Time off for safety representatives to be trained;
 Failure to pay for time off when training or carrying out their functions;
 Failure to make medical suspension payments; and
 Dismissal following a breach of Health and Safety legislation.

Appeals against Enforcement Notices must be made to the Industrial Tribunal within
21 days of its service.

The Tribunal can either cancel or affirm the notice – they can also make modifications
if they affirm the notice.

Rules for Hearing of an Appeal

The Industrial Tribunals (Improvement & Prohibition Notices Appeals) Regulations

1974 (SI 1974 No 1925) for England and Wales.
The Industrial Tribunals (Improvement & Prohibition Notices Appeals) (Scotland)
Regulations 1974 (SI 1974 No 1926) for Scotland.


Made up of three people:

 A legally qualified chair person;
 A person taken from a list provided by the CBI; and
 A person taken from a list provided by the TUC.


Not as formal as courts. A person called to the tribunal may represent himself or herself
and evidence is heard under oath.


Tribunals deal with industrial relations matters, of which Health and Safety is part.


Is to the Employment Appeals Tribunal.

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Differences Between Criminal and Civil Courts


Prosecution in Criminal Courts Action brought in Civil Courts

Purpose: Punishment Purpose: Compensation

Only the court can withdraw action Action can be withdrawn at any time
once it has started.

Limitation Acts do not generally apply Limitation Acts apply

The accused is presumed innocent until There is no presumption favouring

proved guilty. either side. The case is decided on
‘Beyond Reasonable Doubt’ ‘Balance of Probabilities’

The Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974

Employer’s Duties

Provide and maintain safe plant Safe and without risk when
and systems of work. handling, storing and transporting
2 (2a) of articles.
2 (2b)

Provide information, Maintain places of work under his

instruction, training and control without risk to Health
supervision. including access and egress.
2 (2c) 2(2d)

Provide and maintain a working Prepare a written safety policy and

environment safe without risk to bring the policy statement to the
health and facilities for welfare. notice of his employees.
2 (2e) 2 (3)

Employee’s Duties

Take care of self and others affected by his acts or

omissions. Co-operate with employer to comply with
statutory duty.
7a and 7b.

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Health and Safety Regulations

Six Health and Safety at work Regulations came into force

On 1st January 1993.
Health & Safety Management;
Work Equipment Safety;
The 6 Pack Manual Handling of Loads;
Workplace Health, Safety and Welfare;
Personal Protective Equipment at Work;
Display Screen Equipment at Work.

This document refers to ‘Employers’, but also applies to the ‘Self-employed’.

The Regulations implement Six European Community (EC) Directives on Health and
Safety at Work.

Developed under Article 118A added to The Treaty of Rome.

A good deal of guidance on Health and Safety regulations is available in the form of
Approved Codes of Practice.

Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1992

Set out some broad general duties, which apply to almost all kinds of work.
The new regulations work in a similar way, and in fact they can be seen as a way of
fleshing out what is already in the HASAWA.

Regulation # 3 Risk Assessment

A hazard is defined as something with a potential to cause harm and may include
machinery substances or a work practice.

A risk is defined as the likelihood that a particular hazard will cause harm.

Consideration must be given to the population, i.e. the number of persons who might be
exposed to harm and the consequence of such exposure.

The risk assessment should be conducted to determine the measures necessary to be

taken to eliminate or control the hazards identified.

Review and Revision

All assessments should be reviewed on a regular basis to take account of changes in

work practice and technological advances.

Employers with five or more employees are required to keep assessments in writing.
(The same threshold is already used in the HASAWA. Employers with five or more
employees have to prepare a written safety policy).

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Regulation # 4 Health and Safety Arrangements

Involves arrangements to cover planning, organization, control, monitoring and review,

in other words, The Management of Health and Safety.

Regulation # 7 Procedures for Serious and Imminent Danger for Danger Areas

Employers are required to set-up emergency procedures. To devise control strategies as

appropriate to limit access to areas of risk to ensure that only those persons with
adequate Health and Safety knowledge and instruction are admitted.

Regulation # 8 Information for Employees

Employees must be provided with relevant information about hazards to their Health
and Safety.

Regulation # 11 Capabilities and Training

Employers need to take into account the capabilities of their employees before
entrusting tasks. This is necessary to ensure that they have adequate H & S training and
are capable enough at their jobs to avoid risk.

Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1992 (PUWER)

Clarify existing legislation concerning the use of equipment at work.

Specific requirements cover:

 Guarding of dangerous parts of machinery (replacing current law);
 Maintenance operations;
 Danger caused by equipment failure;
 Parts and materials at high or very low temperatures;
 Control systems and control devices;
 Isolation of equipment from power sources;
 Stability of equipment;
 Lighting; and
 Warnings and markings.

Regulation # 5 Suitability of Work Equipment

Equipment provided must be suitable by design or modification to meet the

requirements of the task to be performed.

The equipment must be suitable for the use that will be made of it.

Regulation # 6 Maintenance

Equipment must be maintained in good order and good repair. If the equipment is likely
to fail in an unsafe way (e.g. guards & interlocks), then a planned preventative
maintenance scheme may be required.

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Regulation # 9 Training

The provisions of suitable training are fundamental to the requirement of the Health and
Safety at Work etc. Act 1974.

Regulation # 11 Dangerous Parts of Machinery

There is a principal duty to assess equipment to determine dangerous parts; a hierarchy

of measures should then be taken to control the risk:
1. Fixed enclosing guards;
2. Other guards or protection devices;
3. Protection appliances; and
4. Provision of information, instruction and supervision.

Regulation # 19 Isolation from Sources of Energy

All work equipment, where appropriate must be provided with a suitable means to
isolate it from all its sources of energy.

Isolation means a break in the energy supply. Consideration must be given to the
provision of suitable controls to prevent inadvertent reconnection.

Typically a Permit to Work system should be considered if there is a potential health


Regulation # 22 Maintenance

Ideally, no one should be exposed to risk during maintenance and to this end most
equipment will be stopped and isolated as appropriate.

Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992

Replaces unclear, out of date and largely ineffective legislation with a modern,
ergonomic approach to the problem.

Defined as: Any operations which use hand or other bodily force to transport (including
pushing, pulling, carrying), support, lift, or lower any load.

Regulation 2 Interpretation

Manual handling: The regulations apply to handling operations by human effort.

Load: An implement is not considered a load when in use for its intended purpose i.e. a
power drill being carried is a load, but whilst being used to drill it does not
constitute a load.

Regulation 4 Duties of Employers

1. Avoid hazardous manual operations where reasonably practicable.

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2. Assess adequately any hazardous operations that cannot be avoided. An ergonomic
assessment should look at more than just the weight of the load.

You should consider:

 The shape and size of the load;
 The way the task is being carried out (e.g. posture);
 The working environment (e.g. is it cramped or hot?);
 The individual’s capacity (e.g. is unusual strength required?).

3. Reduce the risk of injury as far as reasonably practicable.

Regulation 5 Duties of Employees

The duties already in place for HASAWA 1974 apply to employees, i.e. to take
reasonable care of both their own Health and Safety and that of others and to co-operate
with their employers to enable them to comply with their Health and Safety duties.

Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992

Have been designed to clarify ambiguities to earlier legislation.

Regulation 3 Application of These Regulations

Exception of:
 Construction sites, if they are fenced off;
 Sites where extraction of mineral resources or exploration for them is carried
out; other regulations are applicable;
 Fishing boats;
 Temporary work sites;
 Workplaces on agricultural or forestry land.

Except for the requirements on sanitary, washing and drinking facilities.

Regulations 5 to 11 Working Environments

 Maintenance of workplace, equipment devices and systems;

 Ventilation;
 Temperature, indoor workplaces;
 Cleanliness and waste materials;
 Room dimensions;
 Workstations and seating; and
 Outdoor workstation (e.g. weather protection).

Regulations 12 to 19 Safety

 Floors;
 Falls from heights and into dangerous substances;
 Falling objects;

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 Windows and skylights (safe opening, closing and cleaning);
 Glazed doors and partitions (use of safe material & marking);
 Organisation of traffic routes, vehicles and loading bays;
 Doors, gates and escalators (safety devices);
 Safe passage of pedestrians.

Regulations 20 to 25 Facilities

 Toilets;
 Washing facilities;
 Drinking water;
 Accommodation for clothing;
 Clothing changing facilities; and
 Seating should be provided together with suitable rest areas for eating (and
arrangements in them for non-smokers) rest facilities for pregnant woman and
nursing mothers.

Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992

Places specific requirements on the selection, provision and maintenance of PPE at


Regulation 2 Interpretation

Personal protective equipment is defined as all equipment designed to be worn at work

or held to protect against one or more risks (hazards) to Health and Safety.

Regulation 4 Provision of Personal Protective Equipment

PPE should be relied on only as a last resort, but where risks are not adequately
controlled by other means. You have a duty to provide suitable PPE, free of charge, for
employees exposed to those risks.

PPE conform to: PPE (EC directive) regulations 1992 – with the CE mark.

Regulation 6 Assessment of PPE

PPE can only be considered to be suitable if it effectively protects the wearer and is
appropriate for the risks and the working conditions.

Regulations 8 to 10 Concern Accommodation Training and Use

 Provide storage for PPE when it is not being used;

 Ensure that PPE is properly used; and
 Give training, information and instruction on its use to your employees.

Regulation 11 Reporting Loss or Defect

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An effective system must be available for employees to report loss of, or defects in,
Part 2 of The Regulations Guidance

The categories considered are:

 Head protection;
 Eye protection;
 Foot protection;
 Hand and arm protection;
 Protective clothing for the body.

New PPE will have to comply with an EC directive on design, certification and testing.
Implemented in UK by Regulations made by the Department of Trade and Industry.

Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment) Regulations 1992

Cover a new area of work activity and are designed to heighten awareness of the
problems associated with poor work station design.

Regulation 1 Citation Commencement Interpretation and Application

A user is defined as an operator who habitually uses display screen equipment as a

significant part of normal work.

Regulation 4 Daily Work Routine of Users

The requirement is to plan display screen equipment so that there are adequate breaks or
changes of activity.

Regulation 5 Eyes and Eyesight

Display screen equipment users are entitled to appropriate eye examinations and
eyesight tests, and also to special spectacles if they are needed and normal ones cannot
be used.

The Health and Safety (Safety Signs & Signals) Regulations 1996

Replaces the Safety Signs Regulations 1980.

Safety signs must be provided where an identified risk cannot be controlled by any
other means.

Regulation 1 Definitions

Acoustic Signal: A coded signal that is transmitted by an appropriate device, does not
include voice signals.

Emergency Escape or First Aid Signs: These give information on escape routes,
emergency exits, location of fire fighting equipment, means of giving
warning (includes illuminated / acoustic).

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Safety Signs: Signboards, safety colours, illuminated signs, and acoustic or hand signals
that provide information or instructions about specific objects, activities or

Regulation 4 Provision and Maintenance

Appropriate safety/warning signs must be provided and maintained in areas identified

by the risk assessment, if the risk cannot be controlled by other means.

Regulation 5 Instruction and Training

Safety Colours:
 Red – Prohibition Signs;
 Yellow – Warning Signs;
 Blue – Mandatory Signs;
 Green – Direction of Escape Routes and Identifies First Aid.

The Health and Safety (Information for Employees) Regulations 1989

Introduced to increase the information given to employees by employers relating to the

requirements of HASAWA 1974.

Regulation 4 Provision of Poster of Leaflet

1. An Employer Shall:
(a) Ensure the approved poster is displayed in a readable condition and is:
(i) Reasonably accessible to employees at work; and
(ii) In a position to be easily seen and read; or

(b) Give employees an approved leaflet.

Regulation 5 Provision of Further Information

Where an employer uses either an approved leaflet or poster, they must be clearly and
indelible writ in the space provided:
 The name and address of the enforcing authority; and
 The office address of the Employment Advisory Service.

Sources of Information

An employer has a legal duty to provide Health and Safety information under section 2
(2)(c) of the HASAWA 1974.

The following sources of information should be considered:

1. Legislation
Provides the basic minimum requirements, which an employer should adhere to in
the form of statutes and regulations.

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2. Approved Codes of Practice
The purpose, to provide practical guidance with regard to the requirements of

3. Guidance Notes
These have no automatic legal standing but as they offer guidance which has been
assessed by an official body, they can be used as a minimum standard in a court of

4. Health and Safety Executive Publications

The HSE drafts a number of documents on behalf of the HSC.

5. British Standards
A large number of these relate to safety, such as, BS 5304 (safeguarding of

12. Posters
The employer is obliged to display certain statutory notices.

13. Signs
These are passive reminders to staff of requirements, which should be explained
during staff training. They may also provide information to visitors.

14. Signals
Various warnings and informative audible and visible signals are often installed.

Controlling the Contractor

Employers need to be aware of the activities of contractors, if they are to fulfil their
legal duties to their employees and others as laid down by the HASAWA 1974 and other

Legal Duties

Section 2: Duties of Employers to Employees
Employers have duties to their employees to ensure so far as is reasonably practicable
the Health, Safety and Welfare at work of all their employees.

Section 3: Duties of Employers to other Employees

Employers have to conduct their undertaking in such a way to ensure, so far as is
reasonably practicable, that people not in their employment who may be affected are
not exposed to risks to their health and safety.

Section 4: Duties Relating to Premises

It is the duty of each person who has to any extent control of premises or the means of
access or egress from, or of any plant or substance in such premises to ensure, so far is
reasonable practicable, that they are safe and without risks to health.

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Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations
Regulation 3: Risk Assessment
Employers have to assess the risks to the health and safety of their employees and to
anyone else who may be affected by their work activity.

Regulation 9: Co-operation and Co-ordination

Employers who work together in a common workplace have a duty to co-operate to
discharge their duties under relevant statutory provisions.

Assessment of Potential Contractors and Sub-Contractors

A potential contractor / sub-contractor should be able to:

1. Provide proof of competence;
2. Show that they have suitable Health and Safety assistance as required by
Regulation 6 of the Management of Health and Safety at Work regulations 1992;
3. Show that they have procedures for serious and imminent danger and for danger
areas as required by Regulation 7 of the Management of Health and Safety
regulations 1992;
4. Show that their workforce has been trained as required by Regulation 11 of the
Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1992.

Other Pre-Qualifications an Employer may request from the potential contractor

 Safety Policy;
 Safety Procedures Manual;
 Employee Safety Handbook;
 Training of Key Personnel in Safety;
 Safety Organisation;
 Accident Records – 5 years;
 Safety Awards – External/Internal;
 Experience of Joint Consultation;
 Extra Mural Activities (employers committees etc);
 Prosecutions and Statutory Notices;

Consultation at the Tender Stage

A potential contractor should be able to provide sufficient information to ensure that

necessary Health and Safety requirements are considered before work begins:

Considerations should be given to:

 Ground conditions;
 Existing services;
 Existing plans;
 Temporary works;
 Construction materials;
 Temporary instability; and
 Site rules and conditions.

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Method Statements
Where work of foreseeable high hazard content has to be undertaken, a formally written
safe system of work must be agreed between the occupier, contractor and/or sub-

A Method Statement should answer the following questions:

1. What is to be done?
2. Who will do it?
3. Where will they do it?
4. When will they do it? And
5. How will they do it?

Examples of work where a Method Statement would be necessary:

 Use of explosives;
 Lifting operations;
 Electrical hazards;
 Demolition; and
 Work at heights.

Specific Safety items to be considered for inclusion in the conditions of contract.

1. Access and egress;
2. Area of Invitation;
3. Safe supervision of the works – including CV’s of key personnel;
4. Safety induction;
5. Reference to specific hazards – Flammable atmospheres
Existence of asbestos, lead etc
Contaminated ground - disposal
Confined spaces
6. Permit to work procedures.
7. Safety Consultation – Management to Management
Management to Workforce
8. Method Statements for specified operations – Heavy lifts
Erections of structural frames
Asbestos removal
9. COSHH Assessments – To/from contractor – approval procedure.
10. Monitoring and Enforcement arrangements.
11. Insurance Arrangements – Indemnity clauses
Self Assurance
Third Party Liability

Specific Safety Items to be considered for inclusion in the Conditions of Contract.

12. Welfare arrangements – toilets, canteen, rest room, etc;
13. First Aid & Medical arrangements.
14. Reporting of accidents and dangerous occurrences.
15. Fire precautions.
16. Housekeeping and tidiness.
17. Emergency procedures.
18. PPE & Clothing.

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19. Use of Owners’ services – electricity, gas, telephone, etc.
20. Security arrangements.
21. Specific site safety rules.

The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 1994

The overall aim of the Construction Design and Management Regulations 1994 (CDM)
is to raise construction safety standards by improving communications and coordination
between parties involved at the planning and construction stages and subsequent
maintenance and repair of the structure.

The regulation defines the duties and responsibilities of parties involved in the
following roles:
 Client;
 Planning Supervisor;
 Designer;
 Principal Contractor;
 Contractor / Sub Contractor;
 Developer.

The regulations also introduce the requirements for a Health and Safety Plan and a
Health and Safety File.

The regulations apply to all design work for construction purposes, including
demolition and dismantling.

They apply to any construction work when:

a. It lasts for more than 30 days;
b. There are 5 or more workers on site at any one time;
c. The duration will be more than 500 person days of work;
d. There is any demolition work, regardless of size or duration.

Work within categories ‘a’ and ‘c’ have to be notified to the HSE on form 10 prior to
work commencing.

The Client should:

 Appoint a Planning Supervisor and Principal Contractor.
 Ensure that any person they appoint directly are competent and are adequately
resourced to deal with any H&S problems.
 Ensure that a suitable Safety Plan has been prepared, prior to any construction
work being carried out.
 Pass on specific information regarding H&S to the Planning Supervisor.
 Keep the Health and Safety file available for inspection.
 Have the names of the Planning Supervisor, Principal Contractor and relevant
parts of the Safety Plan.

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The Planning Supervisor should:
 Ensure that written notification of the project has been given to the HSE, where
 Ensure that the pre-tender safety plan is produced on time.
 Co-ordinate H&S during the design and planning stage of the project.
 Maintain the Health and Safety file during the project and pass it to the client at
the end of the contract.

The Designer should:

 Avoid foreseeable risks;
 Ensure all risks are controlled at source;
 Protect all people at work;
 Provide adequate information about the project, structure / materials to be used.
 Co-operate with the Planning Supervisor and other designers.

The Principal Contractor should:

 Develop the pre-tender safety plan into a working construction H&S plan.
 Ensure that other contractor / sub contractor is competent and have adequate
provisions with regards to H&S.
 Provide information on any risks to other contractors.
 Obtain risk assessments and method statements from contractor / sub contractor.
 Ensure co-operation between contractors.
 Display a copy of the Notification Form (10) of the project.
 Monitor Health and Safety performance on site.
 Ensure that adequate information and training has been given to workers on site,
 Pass any relevant information to the Planning Supervisor to be included in the
Safety File.

The Contractor / Sub Contractor should:

 Co-operate with the Principal Contractor and other Contractors.
 Identify any hazards / risks and inform the principal contractor of control
 Comply with the standards and rules of the Safety Plan.
 Inform the Principal Contractor of any death, injury, ill health or dangerous
occurrence on site.
 Provide relevant information for inclusions in the Safety File.
 Inform employees of relevant H&S information.

Safety Plan:
Consists of two distinct stages.

1. The pre-tender stage, which is the responsibility of the planning supervisor, this
may include.
 General description of the work and time scales.
 Information on Health and Safety risks.
 Information required by the Principal Contractor to allow for competence setting
and adequate resource allocation.
 Adequate information to base a Construction Health and Safety plan on.

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2. The construction stage, where the Principal Contractor develops the plan. May
 Health and Safety Management / monitoring information and details of how
information and training will be disseminated and controlled.
 Contractors Risk Assessments and Method Statements.
 Welfare arrangements.
 Selection criteria for material suppliers, contractors and Plant and Equipment.
 Arrangements for site workers input on Health and Safety issues.
 Levels of training required.
 Site rules and standards.

Health and Safety File:

This is a record of information for the client.

 Records, drawings and plans.

 Construction methods and materials used.
 Maintenance equipment and facilities.
 Maintenance requirements and procedures.
 Operating and Maintenance procedures for plant and equipment.
 Locations of Utilities and Services.

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