Walker Health and Safety Services can assist businesses that require health and safety audits of their management system. For smaller organisations, this might be as simple as a health and safety inspection of the premises and a review of current health and safety documentation. A report is then issued detailing all observations and recommendations.
Larger organisations may be looking for an external Health and Safety Audit check of their management system. Walker Health and Safety service audits are carried out against the requirements of UK legislation and the principles contained in the Health & Safety Executive guidance on health & safety management systems, HS(G)65 Successful Health & Safety Management.
Following the health and safety audit, a prioritised action plan will be produced to guide any required improvements. We would be happy to assist with any recommendations if required, but this is totally up to the client and they are free to implement the recommendations without our assistance if required.
Please note that health and safety audits can also be covered as part of our annual support for clients.
What is a Health and Safety Audit?
A Health and Safety Audit is a process that allows us to measure Organisations compliance to health and safety legislation and the effectiveness of the current Risk Assessment process, Policies, procedures and an Organisations “Safe System of Work” including Contractor Safety and internal Rules and Regulations.
In addition, the Health and Safety Audit will identify any new hazards in the workplace, relevant trends in respect of slips, trips and falls and at the same time incorporate the requirements of new and amended legislation that has occurred since the date of the original Risk Assessment and Policies.
Audits can often feel like a tedious task without the correct approach and system in place. However with the correct procedure a health and safety audit is much more. Having a comprehensive approach can enable health and safety audits to be an extremely valuable tool for businesses of any size.
What are the benefits of a health and safety audit?
Regular audits are significantly recognised as best practice for organisations across all industries. Audits are not to be seen as a box-ticking process but to ensure employee, customer and visitor protection from harm.
A thorough health and safety audit will ensure that the business is fully compliant with all relevant laws and regulations. This can reduce the risk of prosecution should an incident occur. Regular health and safety audits can also show business compliance within the organisation which can lead to improved standards across the board.
Why should you have an Audit?
You have an absolute legal duty to monitor, maintain and review all matters and arrangements of health and safety. By adhering to the Audit requirement and process an Organisation will be able to demonstrate that health and safety are pro-actively managed in accordance with legislative, Insurers and Fire Department requirements.
A Health and Safety Audit will also act as a suitable defence in a court of law, should either Civil or Criminal proceedings be instigated.
Consequences of Non-Conformity
Health and safety legislation unlike conventional English Law, assumes you are guilty until proven innocent. In other words, the burden of proof lies with the Defendant to prove his/her innocence.
Fines and Imprisonment
As a consequence of new legislation, namely The Health and Safety (Offences) Act 2008, imprisonment and unlimited fines may now be imposed upon an individual employee regardless of rank or position. This serves to demonstrate that ownership of health and safety is now every one’s responsibility and acts as a warning to ensure ongoing maintenance and management of all health and safety matters.
What are Work Inspections?
Inspections are a proactive part of good health and safety management. An inspection helps to identify hazards or processes that may not be working efficiently and decide what measures should be in place before an accident may occur.
An inspection is organised between the company and Walker Health and Safety Services Limited.
They can be carried out as frequently as required. Inspections may be required less often if the work environment is low risk such as in an office, but more frequent inspection will be needed if certain workplace areas or specific activities are high risk or change rapidly or significantly.
What does a General Safety Inspection involve?
A general workplace inspection should include the following checks:
In addition, the management system is checked to include the policy, risk assessments and other documentation.
Contact us for an informal discussion on how we can help with your health and safety inspections or audits, or to arrange a free initial consultation with one of our expert team.