Safety files

Hi Everyone,

A few of my customers have had a lot more hazard prevention material in place than they had realised but did not have it formally together. Therfore they were not able to utilize the information correctly.

As an example quite a few customers have safe work procedures in place if they are working with machinery and chemicals. The information will be there on site but as a result of not having a safety file you are unable to locate the information and inturn educate the staff on the hazards.

So I am talking about creating a safety file, I have already gone through above why a safety file is necessary and helps you to locate safety procedures and other safety documents. Now I am going to breakdown how you could go about starting a safety file and what you should look to put in the safety file. Please be aware that some of the documents will need to be drawn up specifically for the site and what the requirements are while other documents may be standard for any work environment.

When creating a safety file I like to put in in the order below:

1) I usually have an index breaking down the sections and a list of what could be found in this section. This is important as the law states that the system shall be easy to follow and find information that is required by yourselves, staff and the authorities.

2) In the first section I normally have the necessary acts OSH act and COID act along with the labour laws. This is done as it is necessary for you to have the laws displayed or kept somewhere accessible to anyone entering the premises.

3) The companies Safety objectives and policies need to be drawn up and filed. This is important as it shows thout into what you require and actions you are looking to take to safeguard your employees and the company assets.

4) I generally put the roles and responsibilities next. This shall stipulate who does what in different situations as well as giving each individual the correct knowledge of their responsibility.

5) The risk assessments and safety audits should generally follow. This is the basis to all the information that follows. The safety audit shall give you answers as to how many extinguishers you need and safety signage, where should the equipment go and what are the hazards created by the work environment and structure. The risk assessment shall answer what risks and hazards are associated with the activities in the office and will offer safeguarding options for each. An initial external assessment of each is necessary and you may be ably to continue developement within the company.

6) From the findings of the risk assessment you shall have written work procedures and safe work instructions. the purpose of these is to ensure once staff are trained that they carry out dangerous tasks following the same steps and as a result limiting incidents.

7) Emergency procedures are drawn up after doing the safety audit. This looks at effective evacuation routes to follow and procedures to follow to allow a safe and effective evacuation. This will also include procedures of investigationa dna mitigating a fire.

8) Master appointment letters. In any safety system certain safety appointments need to be done. be sure to keep a master copy of all appointment you may need on site.

9) Master documents of inspection sheets and checklists. This is to be copied and used monthly to maintain your compliance.

10) Masters of the incident investigation, assessment and action forms. These shall be filled out for any incident even the incidents that do not end up causing an injury.

11) Compliance certificates and service level agreements. By keeping these on record and filed it is easier to keep ontop of maintenance and servicing. This also can be used and forcing a contractor to stick to their agreements.

12) All of the appointment letters and training records are to be kept. Each one of these forms shall have an end date to the appointment or validity of the training.

13) The final section will have all of the filled in monthly safety forms and checklists along with the minutes of any meetings. I generally like to split the final section into JAN-DEC. This makes it easy to track something by date as well as track an incident or process fro, start to finish.

Thank you for reading and once again I hope that you have found the article most helpful. Please feel free to give me feedback on any of the topics I have addressed as I am looking to benifit you as the reader and your imput can assist in making that possible.

Please do not hesitate to contact me if you require any further information or assistance.

Thank Safely

All the best

Guy