Health and safety in maintenance
Understanding Health and Safety Regulations
- Familiarise with the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. This is the primary piece of legislation covering occupational health and safety in the UK.
- Understand the risk assessment process. This identifies hazards in the workplace and enables steps to be taken to remove or reduce risk.
- Comply with the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER) 1998. These ensure work equipment is suitable for its intended purpose.
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
- Wear appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for each job. This may include safety goggles, hard hats, safety boots, and high-visibility clothing.
- Understand the purpose of different types of PPE. For example, safety goggles protect the eyes while hard hats protect against dropped objects.
- Keep all PPE in good condition, and inspect it before each use.
Safe Practices in Maintenance
- Always follow lockout/tagout (LOTO) procedures when servicing machinery. This prevents accidental start-up of equipment during maintenance.
- Use tools and equipment correctly and safely. Misuse of tools can cause accidents.
- Ensure good housekeeping practices. Keep work areas tidy and free from obstructions to reduce slips, trips, and falls.
Dealing with Hazards
- Know how to deal with hazardous substances, following guidelines in the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations (COSHH) 2002.
- Be aware of fire safety regulations, know how to raise an alarm, and know the procedures in case of a fire.
- Understand how to manage risk when dealing with electrical hazards, implementing safe isolation procedures and utilising residual current devices (RCDs) where necessary.
- Understand first aid procedures and know where first aid kits are located.
- Know how to report incidents using the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR) 2013.
- Learn from incidents to prevent recurrence. Implement control measures to ensure similar incidents don’t happen again.