Composites UK, the Trade Association for the UK composites industry, has launched its new online health and safety management system (HSMS). The HSMS, developed in cooperation with HSE, has 2 parts: a public section with critical information relating to H&S in the composites sector with links to relevant documents and websites; and a members-only self-audit tool - health and safety made simple.
As chair of the HSE SiMPLC steering group ('Safety in Manufacturing Plastics and Composites'), which has the overall aim of improving health and safety practice in the plastic and composite manufacturing industries, Composites UK has supported the initiative since its inception in 2010. From this the Association published its action plan in 2014 and as part of this have been developing, over the last 12 months, the new online health and safety management system (HSMS) for the composites industry.
This new tool is easy to use and will help companies comply with the law and prevent workplace accidents and ill health. It has been designed to provide the essential information and templates a company needs to operate safely within the UK composites industry. Working through each section a company can ensure they get their essential documentation and procedures in place. The tool is aimed at those starting up or running a small to medium-sized business, those who have been appointed as a safety representative in a larger organisation, employees and those who want additional advice on how to control workplace hazards.
Whatever line of work a company is in, the tool will help them run a safe and healthy workplace. Every member company can measure their level of safety through our Health and Safety Scheme self-audit tool and submit their status to Composites UK for assurance and self-certification award. This can be done at the end of each stage or in one complete submission.
The tool comprises ten sections, each with a self-audit form. In this first phase launch of the tool we are focused on getting the basics in place through five key areas and achieve compliance levels 1-3:
- Management of health and safety.
- Accident and incident management.
- Rules, procedures and permits.
- Planned inspections and maintenance.
- Personal protective equipment.
Companies can work through all ten sections of the tool if they wish; Composites UK plans to roll-out the second phase of the launch in 2016 to cover the higher levels of H&S compliance (4-6). By following the steps provided, a company can also start working towards readiness for accreditation such as ISO18001.
Sue Halliwell, Composites UK Operations Manager chairs the HSE SiMPLC steering group and comments; “Composites UK has always promoted safe practice and the 2014 Accident Report presented at our AGM this year indicate the UK Composites sector is in relatively good shape in terms of Lost Time Accidents compared to the manufacturing sector average. However, there is no room for complacency and we should strive for continual improvement. This tool is an exciting development and will enable every member company, regardless of size, to ensure they are operating in a safe environment.”
To access the HSMS click: www.compositesuk.co.uk/health-safety-management-system
To find out more about Composites UK and becoming a member visit our website: www.compositesuk.co.uk