Under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, all employers have a duty to protect the health and safety of persons not in their employment, which includes members of the public. It’s vital that companies consider how the public could come to harm within their work environment – be that children at play who may touch things within their reach, or anyone who may be unaware of the work surroundings and associated hazards.
6 Tips to Help Keep Visitors Safe on Your Premises
- Complete a risk assessment to identify anything that could cause harm to someone not familiar with your premises. Walk through your site with a view to looking with a ‘fresh pair of eyes’ – take newer members of staff with you as they too may be able to point things out that perhaps might have been overlooked.
- Think about how visitors could slip or trip on the premises. Check nothing protrudes from your door surrounds that could trip someone, and that steps are not slippery (coat with anti-slip paint if they are). Make sure you have a good housekeeping schedule in place, and that boxes and other items are not left lying around. Check the car park for potholes and repair them.
- Consider how someone could be hurt by a falling item. Check that stored items which visitors can access are placed correctly – use racking that is securely fixed to the wall, and where feasible don’t store things above head height. Regularly check internal partition walls and false walls to ensure they are in good repair.
- Keep your vehicles away from pedestrians by providing segregated walkways inside and outside buildings.
- Prevent anyone being able to fall from height. Fit window restrictors and guard rails on walkways.
- Stop anyone being hurt by electricity. Use socket covers in accessible areas to prevent little fingers entering sockets. Don’t leave any tools lying around – I once found a knife in the milk aisle of a supermarket which an employee had been using to unwrap packaging, and had forgotten to remove.
Make sure that all areas which the public can access are regularly inspected, and that control measures are implemented for any identified hazards.
Contact us should you require assistance.