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News

Can you manage to be safe?

IOSH L3 Managing Safely Course

An easy to scan-read summary of UK / EU managing safely legal duties

I think that in our news blogs, we have never before just simply discussed what any particular law requires of us - section by section. That is mainly because we do not want to bore the reader. It does not make for interesting reading.  And for that reason, this is not normally regarded as a good way to market the legally required duties and goals contained within. 

Laws and duties generally rely on the principle that it is the responsibility of employers to make sure that they and their staff are properly aware of what is needed and then implementing what is required. It is normally a self policing system and unless something goes wrong, no-one will be knocking the the door to remind you. 

But sometimes though, I believe that the reality just needs to be stated. There is an awful lot to consider. The penalties for failing to comply are massive. Loss of life, harm to life. Loss of clients and reputations. Between incidents and court days, budgets and time to make improvements are miraculously found. But together we can do better than that. Part of what we do is to provide specialist training for managers and supervisors . Our training gently, interestingly and progressively takes our candidates through this law and others to help enable them to manage their personal and company responsibilities. 

Young workers – an endangered species?

As you may know, young workers are deemed more at risk than adults for various reasons; which relate to lacking of life experience, not fully understanding just how dangerous situations might be, unsure of when to seek help, enjoying unsuitable ‘horseplay’ etc. 

As a consequence, we have extra duties of care and legal requirements for the safety of young workers. These include assessing their special exposure to risks and putting plans in place to deal with this. 

This is all well and good but it takes some imagination to ‘get your head around this’ and to make meaningful plans. Here is the point where we would like to offer some useful tips. They don’t cover all circumstances or work environments. Ultimately this is for you to work on. But here are some suggestions to start you off.

Induction

All new workers should be given an induction on arrival at the workplace. This may not be your standard induction (if you already have one). You might need to think how you will do this for young workers, some of which will only be used to being taught at school or college and may be uncomfortable with asking questions and might take everything at face value. 

  • Show and instruct on how to use the equipment and how they must safely wear/use any protective kit, such as gloves, safety footwear and goggles.
  • Help them to get to know the workplace.
  • Introduce them to their team; their supervisor, health and safety representative as well as their workmates.
  • Explain health and safety policies and procedures—including where to get support, first aid and emergency evacuation procedures.
  • Explain where they fit in and what their responsibilities for safety in the workplace.
  • Check within a week or so to make sure they are still clear on their understandings so far, and encourage them to ask questions.

Electronic Cigarettes

You may remember our recent blog that we did a few weeks ago regarding E-Cigarettes and the workplace.  

The use of E-Cigarettes is all over the news right now (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-27616041) and while we don’t have a view about whether they are Good, Bad or Ugly - we do have a view on how you should be managing their use in your workplace, which you can read in our recent blog 'The use of E-Cigarettes in the Workplace' here.

Drop us a line on 0800 111 4207 or contact us here, if you would like an informal chat about how to effectively manage the hazards in your workplace posed by the use of E-Cigarettes.

CULTURE CLUB. Our suggested membership rules.

Here at The Safety Organisation (T.S.O.), we are called upon to review and develop health and safety management systems for organisations who, up to that point often have no official systems in place.

We then work hard with the clients to audit what they do, find out what their needs are and help them to create some great management systems. That is great up to this point but what happens then? Well, we stress to them the importance of getting the workforce and management 'meshed in' with the systems. And this normally works. But some clients have difficulties in creating the right culture. This is especially true where people have been allowed to simply do things in their own preferred way - not necessarily the safest way. Our work then concentrates on helping them to create the right culture for them to work. Ultimately it is down to the client to make this work but it takes an investment of time and energy. Once this is understood, it is plain sailing and the systems work well. 

Our New Associate First Aid Trainer

In this news blog I am pleased to announce the arrival of our new Associate Trainer to the team.  Andy Gittins joins us here at The Safety Organisation Ltd as our specialist trainer in First Aid in the Workplace and will deliver all our First Aid related training courses, including Defibrillator training.

Andy has a diverse background in teaching and training and is a passionate individual who inspires and motivates through the use of innovative training techniques and the creation of exciting learning. 

Having gained a wealth of experience through his many and varied roles within the armed forces, education, overseas expeditions and outdoor-centre sectors as well as being an Emergency Responder, he is able to impart practical knowledge and skills to all his learners.  

He is an outstanding communicator and motivator with a willingness to go that bit further with the support and training that he provides so that his learners feel empowered and confident in the application of their new skills and knowledge.

Andy is registered to train and assess on the following courses;

  • Level 3 Award in First Aid at Work
  • Level 3 Award in First Aid at Work Requalification
  • Level 2 Award in Emergency First Aid at Work
  • Level 2 Award in CPR-AED (Defibrillation)
  • Level 2 Award in Paediatric First Aid
  • Level 2 Award in Activity First Aid
  • Oxygen Therapy
  • Emergency Response
  • Appointed Persons
  • Annual Refreshers

Andy’s qualifications and professional standings include BA (Hons) and D32 NVQ assessor.

When not working Andy is a keen hill walker and loves nothing more than planning an assault on a tough mountain somewhere, so that he can keep his health and fitness up to scratch, as well as his skills!!

Do you need specialist first aid training?

If you would like to talk to us about our first aid training courses, or Defibrillator training please request a free consultation using the form to the right, call us on 0800 111 4207 or contact us here.

Defibrillators Save Lives

Acting quickly when someone is in cardiac arrest and fighting for their life is crucially important, and with around 60,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests in the UK every year, there is a good chance that someone in your workforce might be next.

An Automated External Defibrillator (AED) is a portable electronic device that automatically diagnoses and treats life threatening cardiac arrhythmias through the application of electrical therapy, allowing the heart to re-establish an effective rhythm.  We can train your first aid people to become effective users of this vital life saving tool.   

AEDs are easy to use and could be the best investment you ever make for your company and staff.

Why should you have a defibrillator?

Immediate defibrillation can be the difference between a life lost and a life saved.

  • The chance of survival after the heart stops falls by around 10% for every minute that passes without defibrillation
  • If defibrillation is delivered promptly, survival rates as high as 75% have been reported

It can take the emergency services several minutes (and sometimes longer) to arrive, can you afford to wait for their help?

If you would like to know more about AED’s and how they can become an essential and integral life saving tool for your work-place, or if you want more information about general first aid arrangements please give us a call on 0800 111 4207 or contact us here.

Would your business survive a crisis?

How would you ensure your business survives?

If your premises were to suffer a fire how would you maintain your essential business functions?

The most common threats to your premises are flood, fire, power failure, break-ins / vandalism. These are independent of size, and are the same whether you run a large business employing many staff or a family corner shop. The effects are potentially devastating.

A crisis that threatens the survival of your business could happen at anytime.

Start now - you never know what tomorrow can bring.

Learn more

You can learn more about our business continuity management service, where you can complete our interactive 'Business Preparedness Checklist' to help analyse how prepared you are for a crisis, within our health and safety consultancy section

Get in touch

If you would like to discuss your company’s Continuity Planning requirements in more detail, or arrange a free consultation, please use our 'Request a consultation' form displayed to the right, or contact us here...

New Team Member - Crisis Management & Business Continuity

contingency plans

In this news blog, we are proud to tell you about our new team member.

Mike Schofield, an old and respected friend has joined us as our specialist Associate, focusing on crisis, contingency and business continuity management. 

 To have Mike on board is quite a coup, given his very specialist skills and his already busy life.

Mike served for 30 years with Greater Manchester Police, having a varied and distinguished career. Like Kevin, (at a different time) he also held the post of Inspector responsible for events policing in Central Manchester. 

Mike went on to become the head of GMP's Emergency Planning Team, specialising on working with other emergency services in emergency planning, crisis management and business continuity.  His role included the development of appropriate contingency plans aimed at minimising or mitigating the impact of any incident.

Mike has a rare quality and skill in emergency and crisis planning. These skills are essential for any strategies for  business resilience and for effectively dealing with difficult circumstances should a business becomes involved or located in any emergency or major incident. These might include floods (and other natural hazards), chemical incidents, explosions, terrorism, major crimes and combinations of factors which might interrupt or place unusual burdens on businesses. Experience has shown time and again, that those businesses with pre-thought-out back up plans, survive the ‘ride’ better and ‘fitter’ than those without. 

As well as being one of our Associates, Mike still works in post retirement capacity with GMP in this in this role, so his skills are as sharp as ever.

Have you spotted and gaps in your organisation’s ability to react to or recover from any type of (potential) untoward or serious incidents, please let us know. We will be delighted to help you. Please call us on 0800 111 4207 or contact us here.

Fire Safety in the workplace - Our top 5 tips

Fire Safety in the workplace should always be a high priority for all businesses no matter what their size to ensure a safe working environment for all.

Failure to do so can give your employees the wrong message as it reflects to them that their well-being while at work is not always being considered and in some cases even have catastrophic effects in the event of an office fire.

Five tips on implementing fire safety in the work place within small businesses:

1. Appoint and train a fire safety officer

For small businesses with less than 20 employees it is essential that a minimum of one person in your business is fire safety trained. This individual should be well trusted and be present on the premise most of the time during working hours.

Across the country there are many companies who offer employee training which can educate the identified person further in this area. Once trained this individual should be appointed as the fire safety officer for your business.  The Safety Organisation Ltd can provide this training and on-going support at very competitive prices.

The right, the next best and ... well, nothing.

Theodore Roosevelt, Former US President and visionary is credited with having said;

“The best you can do is the right thing. The next best thing is the wrong thing and the worst thing you can do is to do nothing”. 

Let me ask then, what have you done for health, safety and welfare in your workplace, whether you are workforce or whether you are management? 

If you have safe systems of work, if you review them, modify them and work to them, you have done the right thing. If you have done the next best or if you have done the wrong thing, then we would respectfully suggest that perhaps you need to take some pretty swift actions to sort things out.

Whether you choose to do this yourself or whether you have the skills to manage this yourself, we can probably help you to determine priorities, provide training or checks. To learn more about how we can help, please see our health and safety consultancy services, call us on 0800 111 4207 or contact us here.

International Safety Standards

The globalisation of trade and inter country links has arguably increased the need for a common set of international standards by which employers, wherever they are, can work to recognised and agreed safe working practices.  To date organisations seeking certification of their occupational safety and health management systems have used standards like OHSAS 18001 and Z10.

There has been a recent decision by ISO to work with many countries throughout the world to develop a new international standard that will allow organisations to be certificated to a truly global standard and this is welcomed by all at The Safety Organisation Ltd.  We work with clients in many different countries and it is an onerous task to ensure that the systems you use and promote are applicable and acceptable wherever you are working.

We look forward to the results of the upcoming consultation exercise and a draft international standard being produced by April 2015.  A final draft international standard is expected to be available by mid 2016 and the new ISO 45001 will be a welcome step forward in the promotion of safe and healthy working practices throughout the world.

If you would like to start preparing your business now so that moving over to a new internationally recognised safety standard is as painless as possible - give us a call on 0800 111 4207 or contact us here.