How to create a Health and Safety System
Are you aware of the potential penalties for Health and Safety breaches? The fines vary depending on the severity of the issue i.e. leaving a ladder in front of a fire exit could be a £20,000 fine or an issue concerning your air-conditioning system i.e. Legionella, could face fines between £2.4 million to £10 million. Manslaughter cases in the UK have resulted in fines up to £20 million. This will not only put a dent in your profit margin, but for serious breaches, could easily put some organisations out of business.
In episode two of the ISO 45001 Steps to Success Podcast series on The ISO Show, Paul Robinson provides tips on where to begin with identifying, understanding and addressing your Health and Safety obligations and how to create a H & S Manual compliant to legal requirements and ISO 45001.
As a starting point, you will need to identify the various Health and Safety acts and regulations available on the official home of UK legislation www.legislation.gov.uk. At Blackmores we pull together all the applicable legislation, regulations and ‘other’ requirements for you into a ‘Legal Register’ which provides links to the legal requirements, a summary of the regulations, and how you can comply with the requirements.
The net stage is to define the scope. What can you directly control within your business and what is outside your control? Where are the main risks? Where do you need to focus to reduce risk to your employees and stakeholders?
Many people wonder what is actually contained within a Health and Safety System.
Typically organisations would have a Health and Safety Manual which would contain strategic and operational controls to prove that the H & S System is working effectively :-
- Scope and boundaries of the H & S System
- H & S Policy Statement – Endorse commitment from the leadership
- H & S Objectives
- H & S documents to support legal compliance i.e. Legal register, procedures to meet legal requirements i.e. COSH.
- H & S Procedure for risk management and monitoring and measuring the results
- H & S Procedures i.e. Manual Handling Procedure, DSE Procedure.
- H & S Records i.e. completed Risk Assessment Reports, Accident/near miss reports, Corrective Action results and Internal Audit reports.
Please note this is not an exhaustive list of all the documentation, but hopefully will give you a flavour of some of the main documents and give you an idea on how you can structure your H & S System.
The key to creating a successful H & S Manual is keeping it as simple and accessible as possible – don’t allow any excuses for not being able to access or understand your Health and Safety controls.
To find out about the next stage of implementing ISO 45001 – communication and compliance, join us for the third and final episode of the ISO Show series on ISO 45001 Steps to Success.
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