Your responsibilities as an employer when staff are working at heightOctober 02, 2018
If you’re an employer, you’re responsible for the health, safety, and welfare of your employees. That means you must do everything you can to minimise risk in your workplace and protect employees from harm. In terms of working from height, this means familiarising yourself with and adhering to the Work at Height Regulations 2005, which are also available here as a brief guide.
As an employer, when working at height, you have a responsibility to:
- Ensure all employees have the correct certificates and are competent to carry out the job you are asking them to do. That includes ensuring everyone involved in a job receives appropriate instruction and familiarisation and understands potential risks and emergency procedures.
- Assess each job and determine whether it is necessary to work at height. If it’s possible to complete work from the ground, then you should do so. Where working from height is essential, take every precaution possible to prevent falls and where there is a risk, use safety measures and equipment to limit the distance and consequences of falls.
- Make sure all work is properly planned, supervised, and carried out as safely as possible and by competent people. This includes selecting appropriate work at height access and safety equipment, emergency planning and making considerations for weather, among other factors.
- Avoid employees having to pass across or work on or near fragile surfaces. Where this is not possible, use supports or protection to secure surfaces and safety equipment to reduce risk and consequences of falls.
- Take precautions for falling objects. Where possible, avoid the potential of injury from falling objects, use safety measures and store materials and objects in a way that minimises risk.
- Inspect all work at height access and safety equipment to ensure it is safe before use and to ensure that all safety tests and inspections are complete and in date. All equipment needs to be stored safely and securely.
- Ensure all places of work at height, including the surface, parapets and guard rails are secure and safe before use.
- Make sure employees know their responsibilities in regards to working from height. These include using equipment as instructed and as per manufacturer’s instructions as well as notifying you or other management or any problems with equipment or potential hazards.
If you need further advice on your responsibilities when working from height or are looking for training, equipment hire or anything else related to working from height, our team of experts would be happy to help – contact Warren Access.