Importance of Following Safety Laws at a Work Place

by Penny Cooper on September 27, 2012

While it may be the responsibility of the employer to ensure an optimum working environment for his/her staff, the employees are also expected to keep an eye on the safety of the workplace and look out for one another in order to reduce risks of accidents.

Duties of the employee

As an employee of an organisation, you must do your bit to evaluate any harms or dangers within your office/factory. When you notice any kind of risk, you must take the necessary steps to prevent it from causing harm to your colleagues and others at the work place. You must also provide the safety and health information that is required to complete the job safely to your employer. You must also follow the instruction and training provided to you by the employer. Your health and that of your co-workers must be considered at all times. Any changes or damages to the safety aspects of your workplace must be reported to the employer.

Duties of the employer

Make sure that you provide your employees with protective clothing and the right equipment that is required to do a job, and ensure proper care of the same. You must also provide clean drinking water after it is tested so as to prevent illnesses. Toilet and washing facilities must also be provided to the employees and you must ensure that the company is well-equipped with a first aid kit. Any kind of injury caused to your employees must be recorded and insurance must be provided so that your employees are covered in case they are ill or injured.

The Health and Safety at Work Act

The Health and Safety at Work Act of 1974 was introduced to legally safeguard the welfare and safety of employees at a work place. The act covers occupational safety and health within the United Kingdom, and the employee’s safety and health executive will bear responsibility for the enforcement of the act. If the law is not followed or followed incorrectly, the act will operate with a civil law system that allows individuals to file a law suit against an organisation or an individual. Any case where fatalities or accidents are caused in a work place due to irresponsible behaviour can result in you being sued. These laws don’t only protect the interests of the individuals working in a particular environment, but also safeguards the interests of organisations and companies as a whole.

Legal attention is required at all times if an accident relating to safety and health occurs in a workplace. Lawyers with specific training in the field will have to be consulted in case of an accident. Following are the cases in which you may take the help of a lawyer:

  • Fire precaution

  • Accidents that take place due to the lack of appropriate safety equipment.

  • ATV accidents

  • Accidents involving wiring and electrical supply

  • Accidents involving railways or mines

  • Accidents involving transport to or from the work place

  • Highway safety

  • Working from places that are very high

  • Trips and slips at the office/factory

  • Exposure to asbestos, etc.

Penny is an expert associated with InterSafety, providers of showa gloves and other high-quality work equipment in the UK. 

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