FAQs

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Whether you have an existing arrangement with another Safety Advisor or you’re looking for someone new to help with your Health and Safety Responsibilities, Your Safety Advisor is here to help.

We work with you, we listen to you and provide you with the service you want and need. We are experts in the construction sector, we do not get involved with food safety; manufacturing or other non construction related sectors – that is not what we do. What we do offer is Expert Construction Safety Advice and Support to your business, we become ‘Your Safety Advisor’.

Furthermore we are Chartered Safety Practitioners, we are also Chartered Construction Professionals and Chartered Environmentalists, meaning we understand the industry.

Retained Health and Safety Advisor

Your Safety Advisor Ltd is not your average health and safety consultant claiming to be able to do everything, for anyone, in any industry, and then ends up failing to provide you with what you need.  Instead, Your Safety Advisor Ltd only undertakes health and safety work in the construction industry and Your Safety Advisor Ltd prides itself on producing high quality, professional documentation and offering competent, professional advice to our clients.

Your Safety Advisor Ltd has extensive experience of working with small and medium sized contractors; sole traders and labour only sub-contractors.  We become part of your team, we become ‘Your Safety Advisor’, working for you and helping to ensure you are aware of your duties/responsibilities and have the necessary documentation, policies and procedures in place.

Your Safety Advisor Ltd can also help by preparing your Risk Assessments; Method Statements; Safety Policy and by completing any Health and Safety Questionnaires or SSIP Assessments which may need to be completed.

Essentially you are responsible for the health and safety of everyone affected by your business. This includes not only your employees but also others who may visit or work at your premises, such as customers, tradesmen, suppliers and delivery drivers. Additionally you have responsibilities to others affected outside of your premises (such as through noise and other emissions etc) and anyone affected by the products or services which you design, produce, construct or supply.

You are also responsible for the provision of adequate welfare facilities for your employees and subcontractors.

General requirements include:

  • Having a health and safety policy.
  • Carrying out a risk assessment, and taking action to control any risks.
  • Developing safe systems of work.
  • Providing adequate and sufficient training, instruction and information to your employees.
  • Making suitable arrangements for employee welfare.
  • Recording and documenting your safety systems and assessments where necessary
  • Taking out employers’ liability insurance (unless all your employees are your close relatives).

Specific regulations cover areas such as providing health and safety information to employees, fire precautions, managing dangerous equipment and hazardous substances, providing a suitable working environment, and dealing with accidents and emergencies.

Furthermore the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations (CDM) place additional duties and responsibilities on all persons involved in the construction and building industries.

Yes. All organisations, including Sole Traders need a Safety Policy, however if you have five or more employees, the policy must be in writing, and you must bring it to the attention of your employees. Even if you have less than 5 employees, it is still good practice to have a written policy and you will find that many clients will require you to supply a copy of your policy to them as part of their own vetting procedures.

Your policy should detail your statement and general approach to health and safety, such as how you ensure the safety of equipment, create a healthy working environment, establish safety procedures, provide appropriate safety and job related training etc.

The Health and Safety Policy should details the way that you organise and manage health and safety and who is responsible for the implementation and management of different aspects of health and safety within the organisation. The Safety Policy should also detail your procedures for dealing with specific hazards and risks – for example, the use of plant and machinery; asbestos procedures; electrical safety; evacuation procedures; first aid arrangements etc.

A commitment to review the policy periodically and revise it as necessary must also be made, and the policy should be signed and dated by an appropriate senior member of the organisation.

A risk assessment is the process of identifying potential health and safety hazards; who they may affect; the seriousness; and then assessing the likelihood of the hazard of the hazard occurring. both immediate hazards and potential long term hazards such as health effects must be considered. The purpose of the risk assessment is to then ideally eliminate the risk, or where this is not practical, to provide sufficient mitigation measures to manage and control the risks and subsequent likelihood of harm to your employees or others.

You are legally required to carry out a risk assessment and take steps to control any risks you identify. Risk assessments should be periodically reviewed or whenever circumstances change or if you have reason to believe the assessment is no longer valid.

Under the COSHH regulations, workplace exposure limits (WELs) are assigned to a large number of hazardous substances, which must not be exceeded.

Around 500 substances have WELs assigned to them and these hazardous substances could be chemicals, fumes, dusts or fibres.  However, new workplace exposure limits are regularly introduce and a further 31 substances have been added to the list from 21 August 2018.

It’s essential that you make reference to the latest version of the HSE publication EH40 which will detail the current workplace exposure limits (WELs).

WELs are legal limits of exposure, averaged over a specified period of time. So within a period of time (often 8 hours, but sometimes as short as 15 minutes), you are only allowed to be exposed to a certain amount of a hazardous substance.

WELs apply to a lot of substances you will have heard of, such as arsenic, asphalt, carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, cement, flour dust, gypsum, hardwood dust, limestone and petroleum fumes. But also some you might not be so familiar with, like piperazine dihydrochloride.

Substances which have been assigned a WEL include those that are carcinogenic or mutagenic could cause asthma and other substances that are of significant risk through high levels of inhalation.

Sometimes it’s not possible to eliminate exposure to a hazardous substance completely, even with controls like extraction, ventilation and PPE in place.

Exposure limits are in place to control the effects of substances, depending on the nature of the substance and the effects of exposure. Some effects require prolonged exposure, while others may be seen after brief exposures.

Yes. You must provide appropriate information, instruction and training to all employees and the need for the provision of new or additional training should be considered as part of your Risk Assessment process.

On 12 March 2015 the maximum fine for health and safety offences was increased from £20,000 to an unlimited fine and/or one year’s imprisonment if a case is heard by Magistrates. If heard in Crown Court, fines are unlimited and you could also face up to two years’ imprisonment. Fines can be imposed on a company and/or on individual officers of the company if both are prosecuted. Directors may also face a disqualification order preventing them from acting as a company director for up to 15 years.

If a person to whom the organisation owes a duty of care (such as an employee, or a customer) dies as a result of a gross failure in the way health and safety is managed by senior managers in your business, it may be guilty of corporate manslaughter.

The court will look at your systems and processes for managing safety and how these were implemented, and a failure will be treated as gross if it falls far below the standard that could reasonably be expected of your business. The penalty is an unlimited fine and the court may also make a publicity order, requiring the organisation to publicise the details of its conviction and fine.

Have a quotation for consultancy work or the renewal of your competent person service from your existing advisor? Send it to us and let us show you how much we can save you! Dismiss