Supporting UK Composites

Health & Safety Management System

Health & Safety Management System

It is important to reduce the risks of workplace dangers and provide a safe working environment by taking the right precautions.

Health and safety management involves practical steps that protect people from harm and at the same time protect the future success of your business.

Read Introduction in full.

Managing health and safety is an integral part of managing your business. You need to do a risk assessment to find out about the risks in your workplace, put sensible measures in place to control them, and make sure they stay controlled.

Composites UK members should log in to access templates and detailed information.  Access the online self-assessment tool by clicking the red box 'Health and Safety Made Simple'.

Read Managing Risks in full.

You must provide a safe and healthy environment for all your employees and take their welfare needs into account. However, this doesn't have to be complicated or time-consuming. 

Read Your Workplace in full.

Everyone who works for you needs to know how to work safely and without risks to health. As an employer, giving your workers the right knowledge and skills is not only a legal duty but also can contribute to the success of your business.

Read Your Workforce in full.

The 'Safety in Manufacturing Plastics and Composites' or SIMPLC Strategy aims to build on good practice within the industry and establish a health and safety culture within individual businesses. This strategy is targeted at the polymer and FRP composites industries. The strategy will be achieved through a series of defined targets to drive improvement as well as measure performance.  The overall aim is to reduce accidents, ill health, and lost time, as well as improve the industry’s safety performance.

Read SiMPLC in full.

Specific information relevant to the Composites Industry on:

Electricity can kill or severely injure people and cause damage to property. However, you can take simple precautions when working with or near electricity and electrical equipment to significantly reduce the risk of injury to you, your workers and others around you. 

Read Electrical Safety in full.

Most fires are preventable, and those responsible for workplaces and other buildings to which the public have access can avoid them by taking responsibility for and adopting the right behaviours and procedures. 

Read Fire Safety in full.

Lift trucks can be dangerous machines. If you don’t use them properly, they can kill and injure people. Follow some simple rules to help you and those you work with stay safe.

Read Fork-lift Trucks in full.

Many materials or substances used or created at work could harm your health. These substances could be dusts, gases or fumes that you breathe in, or liquids, gels or powders that come into contact with your eyes or skin.

Read Harmful Substances in full.

This section covers the different safety aspects of using machinery and maintaining plant and equipment in the workplace. Employers should consider how their workers use machinery, and have adequate maintenance arrangements in place to ensure it remains safe to use.

Read Machinery in full.

Manual handling causes over a third of all workplace injuries. These include work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) such as pain and injuries to arms, legs and joints, and repetitive strain injuries of various sorts.

Read Manual Handling in full.

Loud noise at work can damage your hearing. This usually happens gradually and it may only be when the damage caused by noise combines with hearing loss due to ageing that people realise how impaired their hearing has become.

Read Noise in full.

Employers have duties concerning the provision and use of personal protective equipment (PPE) at work.

PPE is equipment that will protect the user against health or safety risks at work. It can include items such as safety helmets, gloves, eye protection, high-visibility clothing, safety footwear and safety harnesses. It also includes respiratory protective equipment (RPE).

Most slips occur when floors become wet or contaminated and many trips are due to poor housekeeping.

The solutions are often simple and cost-effective and a basic assessment of the risks should help to identify what you can do to tackle slips and trips risks.

Read Slips and Trips in full.

Working at height remains one of the biggest causes of fatalities and major injuries. Common cases include falls from ladders and through fragile surfaces. ‘Work at height’ means work in any place where, if there were no precautions in place, a person could fall a distance liable to cause personal injury (for example a fall through a fragile roof).

Read Working at Height in full.

A confined space is one which is either enclosed, or largely enclosed, and which also has a reasonably foreseeable risk to workers of fire, explosion, loss of consciousness, asphyxiation or drowning.

It may be small and restrictive for the worker or it could be far larger with hundreds of cubic metre capacity.

Under Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH), carbon fibre or glass fibre dust is not recognised as hazardous and there is no work exposure limit (WEL) specifically for exposure to either dust. However, with any activities that generate nuisance dust, the dust is classed as a substance hazardous to health where the following work exposure limits are exceeded:

Read Dust Control in full.

Hand knives are used widely in the composites sector and can account for a significant proportion of injuries in individual companies. However, these injuries can be reduced in a number of ways:

Read Hand Knife Injuries in full.

As an employer, you have a legal responsibility to protect employees from work related stress.

Read Workplace Stress in full.

You must manage the risk of MSDs in your workplace. If these risks exist, you must consider both the requirements for a general risk assessment and specific assessments of other risks, for example, from:

Mental health is about how we think, feel and behave. Anxiety and depression are the most common mental health problems. They are often a reaction to a difficult life event, but can also be caused by work-related issues.

Read Mental health at work in full.


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