What Health and Safety Training Do Climbing Instructors Need?

climbing-instructor

Climbing instructors need to be ready to work with climbers with a wide range of skills. From children who have just started to learn, to experienced adults who are training between outdoor bouldering sessions.

Instructors without the proper training and experience are a risk to those they are meant to support. Continue Reading…

5 Safety Regulations You Need to Know

Working at height

Why you must inspect equipment and keep records

As an Equipment Manager, it is necessary to inspect any equipment where there could be risks to health and safety. A risk assessment should be carried out to determine if there is any need for inspections and routine maintenance to ensure the continued safety of your colleagues. Inspections must be recorded and evidenced, a management system like Papertrail can help you complete inspections in a clear, efficient and systematic way.

mandatory-regulations

Regulations to be aware of

There are five main regulations that businesses with safety equipment must consider: 

  1. The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974
  2. The Personal Protective Equipment At Work Regulations 1992
  3. PUWER 
  4. LOLER (if you’re using lifting equipment)
  5. WAHR (if you’re working at height)

1. The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974

The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 (HSWA, the HSW Act, the 1974 Act or HASAWA) is the main piece of legislation covering occupational health and safety in the UK. The act clarifies the general responsibilities of everyone from employers and employees to owners and managers of the workplace for maintaining health and safety.

2. The Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992

The Personal Protective Equipment At Work Regulations 1992 is a set of regulations created under The Health and Safety Act placing liability on the employer to ensure suitable personal protective equipment has been granted for those who may be exposed to a risk to their health or safety at work.

3. Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER)

These regulations aim to make work safer for anyone using and coming in contact with equipment, this includes employers, employees, contractors, suppliers and people who may need to access any equipment. The regulation ensures that equipment is kept in good order and that maintenance, training and inspections are carried out to suitable and sufficient levels to identify if the equipment can be used. 

4. Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 (LOLER)

LOLER places responsibilities on people and companies who own, operate or have control over lifting equipment. If any lifting equipment is provided you must manage and control the risks to avoid any injuries or damages.

5. The Work at Height Regulations (WAHR)

Falls from height is one of the biggest causes of deaths and major injuries for the work at height sector. The Work at Height Regulations was introduced to prevent death and injury caused by a fall from height.

Are you complying with these regulations?

Papertrail helps businesses to comply with health and safety regulations, as well as saving time on inspections and reduce risk.

Using Papertrail allows you to inspect several items and add inspections to multiple records at once, this saves you more time in comparison to logging inspection records individually. Read more on the features of Papertrail that can help you complete inspections and keep accurate records. 

You can review and improve your equipment management system today for FREE – created for Equipment Managers. 

Download our 5 Step Management System Review Workbook and discover how Papertrail can meet your safety management needs.

5 Steps to review your PPE Management System

PPE Management for Contractors: What you need to know

Climbing at height

What is PPE and when should it be used?

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is equipment designed to protect the user against health and safety risks at work. There is a vast range of PPE that provides different types of protection for the user. PPE can be used to protect the eyes, head, body, hands and arms, feet and legs and in high-risk places, the lungs. It can incorporate items such as safety helmets, gloves, eye protection, high-visibility clothing, safety footwear and safety harnesses.

Wearing and using PPE is required when employees or contractors are undertaking high-risk work. So, if you or your team are working at height, that’s classed as high-risk work. It is essential for everyone in the workplace to understand the importance of identifying and wearing the appropriate equipment. Carrying out a risk assessment identifies the hazard(s) that may occur and help to determine what equipment is needed. PPE must be regularly inspected for safety and compliance purposes.

PPE inspections on paper

How to manage work at height PPE

Whenever PPE is used, a detailed record must be created inclusive of the employee’s name, the equipment item, and the date. Many equipment managers create a simple spreadsheet – which indeed will suffice and introduce accountability amongst staff members. However, the more equipment you use results in an expansion of data that must be recorded, this can increase the risk of errors and the amount of time spent documenting inspections.

Volume of equipment graph

The management is often overlooked even though it is necessary when using any equipment, using a PPE Management System can boost the confidence in inspections and management of critical safety equipment.

Who is responsible for PPE?

The Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations (1992) clearly states, according to Regulation 4, “Every employer shall ensure that suitable personal protective equipment is provided to his employees who may be exposed to a risk to their health or safety while at work except where and to the extent that such risk has been adequately controlled by other means which are equally or more effective.” Therefore, according to the law, it is the employer’s responsibility to protect the employee by providing the correct PPE. The regulations also require that the equipment is fit for its objective by correctly assessing it, maintaining and storing the equipment following the manufacturer’s instructions, and utilising it accurately.

It is crucial for equipment owners to look after PPE and to provide suitable storage facilities when it is not in use to keep it clean and in proper condition. Contractors must ensure equipment is kept clean and in excellent repair, following the manufacturer’s maintenance schedule to discover shelf life and replacement periods. Intricate repairs and maintenance should only be completed by specialists, however, simple maintenance of PPE can be carried out by a trained user. Suitable replacement parts for PPE should always be readily available; it is also worth keeping a disposable supply of equipment for any potential visitors and third-party contractors that may be required to wear protective equipment.

Who is responsible for training and compliance?

Employers hold responsibilities concerning the provision and use of PPE supplied for employees. Wherever there is a risk to health and safety, employers are accountable to provide appropriate PPE alongside training to their staff members.

When selecting and using PPE, contractors should use equipment that is CE marked to prove it complies with the regulations. Employers should take the size, fit, and weight of the equipment into consideration when choosing equipment that suits the user; employers are expected to provide appropriate training in its usage. Employees should be informed as to why PPE is required, when to use it, how it can be replaced, and who/how to report any damaged equipment.

Complying with regulations is effectively a joint effort between the contractor and the employee. The contractor is accountable for training, ongoing development and supplying the appropriate equipment, whereas the employee ensures that training is working in practice, the equipment is stored safely and maintained, and that any incidents or faults are reported and fixed properly.

Papertrail User Management for PPE

How Papertrail can help you manage PPE

Papertrail is designed to reduce your workload, increase your productivity and manage health and safety inspections globally. Easily create and manage hundreds of items of equipment records in minutes, our PPE management system allows you to add: your entire equipment inventory – regardless of size, inspection evidence, manufacturer checklists, set reminders and notifications and manage your team’s user permissions. Read more about the features to make your management system work for you!

Are you effectively managing your PPE?

You can review and improve your inspection management system today for FREE! Download our 5 Step Management System Review Workbook, created for Equipment Managers to ensure your PPE management system is effective.

5 Steps to review your PPE Management System

Why People Take Risks at Work: Preparing for Human Nature

risk-at-work-papertrail

Every workplace contains a certain amount of risk to those employed. Risks can come in many forms. From the drive to work, to stress, to jobs involving a more readily accepted higher amount of risk, such as working at height.

In the UK, there are dozens of different laws designed to protect workers, contractors and the general public from a wide spectrum of risks. The Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 is one of the most well-known pieces of legislation. This is overseen by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), with senior managers in private and public organisations responsible for implementation. Continue Reading…

Health and Safety in the Infrastructure Industry: What’s Required?

infrastructure-papertrail

A former government adviser warned the construction industry that health and safety is a “ticking timebomb”, as a result of HSE budget cuts.

The construction industry has been hiring in record numbers in recent years, thanks to a new post-recession boom in property and infrastructure projects. The tragic downside of this is the number of industrial incidents in building sites has doubled in recent years. Between 2001 and 2014 there have been 760 deaths on building and infrastructure sites. Continue Reading…

What is LOLER, and does it affect me?

ropes

What is LOLER?

The Lifting Operation and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 (LOLER) place responsibilities on equipment managers and companies who own, operate or have control over lifting equipment. All operations involving lifting equipment must be planned by a competent person, the regulation also requires that equipment is fit for purpose, appropriate for the task and suitably marked, with maintenance and defects reported. 

What is lifting equipment?

Lifting equipment includes any equipment that is used in the workplace for lifting or lowering loads, including accessories providing a link between the two. This includes any lifting accessories used for anchoring, fixing or supporting it. 

Examples of lifting equipment according to the HSE:

  • Safety Harnesses and Helmets
  • Overhead cranes and their supporting runways
  • Patient hoists and winches
  • Motor vehicle lifts
  • A building cleaning cradle and its suspension equipment
  • Telehandlers and forklifts
  • Lifting accessories

If you use or manage working at height equipment (Fall Protection, Fall Arrest, Fall Restraint) then you are likely to be familiar with the following equipment types in your inventory that requires a LOLER Inspection certificate: 

Karabiners, Slings, Hitch Cords, Cambium Savers, Pulleys, Friction Devices, Harnesses, Ropes, Swivels, Anchor Rings, Connectors, Ascender/Descender, Figure 8, Fimbl Saver, Lanyards, Mechanical Hitch, Prussiks, Shackles.  All of the above requires a six-month inspection certificate to show they are operating properly and fit for purpose. 

Who must comply with LOLER?

Anyone with responsibility directly or indirectly for work equipment and its use must comply with LOLER, this includes equipment managers, employers, employees, self-employed and those who hire work equipment. Anyone who is accountable for lifting equipment in their company must be aware of LOLER and the procedures.

Working at height Equipment that’s not covered by LOLER

Equipment may appear as ‘lifting’ equipment and thought to be covered by LOLER. Nonetheless, there are some notable exceptions that are not covered by LOLER, when this equipment is used it must be maintained for safety and inspection under the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER). Equipment that is not covered by LOLER includes:

  • pallet trucks, where the consequence of the load falling off is very low
  • roller shutter doors
  • escalators
  • fall arrest ropes
  • tipper trucks

Using Papertrail to comply with LOLER

You are required by LOLER to give your equipment a thorough 6 monthly inspection before completing an inspection report. If you are not already using a management system, Papertrail helps you create a report and guarantees it is saved against each item inspected and ensures it can be reproduced as a PDF print off or digital display at any time. Follow our step by step on how to produce and save a 6 monthly inspection report.

Inspection certificate

With Papertrail, you can set daily, weekly, monthly or 6-monthly inspection schedules for all your equipment, and get notified whenever another inspection is due – so you’ll never forget to make them! Using Papertrail to record these inspections and create the reports needed for LOLER compliance is so much easier and less time-consuming than paper records. 

You can review and improve your inspection management system today for FREE! Download our 5 Step Management System Review Workbook, created for equipment managers to ensure your PPE management system is effective.

5 Steps to review your PPE Management System

New: Adding Images and Files to Your Papertrail Account

papertrail-account-images

We’re proud to announce that Papertrail users can now add images and files to individual records! Having taken feedback onboard from our customers – many of whom in need of a more visual way to manage their inventories – we think that this update is going to make safety management even easier, improving staff accountability whilst ensuring that the right piece of equipment is being inspected at the right time.

Read on for the lowdown on how to start adding images to your records. Continue Reading…

5 Steps to becoming ISO 9001 Certified

quality

About ISO 9001:2015

ISO established ISO 9001:2015 for *quality management systems, it comprises a set of general standard requirements governing the quality management system of certified companies or any other organisations. ISO 9001:2015 is internationally recognised, it is the most used quality management system standard in the world, used in over 170 countries by over a million companies! The standard applies to all types and sizes of organisations, helping you organise processes, improve the efficiency of processes and continually improve.

ISO 9001 is a standard that creates trust. When working with different companies the customer will need to know they can trust you to complete good quality work. Showing them you are certified and comply builds confidence when they work with you.

*What is a Quality Management System (QMS)?

A Quality Management System is a set of documented policies, procedures and responsibilities organised into a structured system of processes to assist an organisation in realising its quality vision, goals and objectives. Businesses in adventure, arboriculture and work-at-height benefit substantially from a standardised system, as the safety risks and service focus in these industries, mean that improving quality management is essential to staying competitive, and staying safe!

Benefits of ISO 9001 Certification

An ISO 9001 certification produces numerous benefits for any business.

Customer Satisfaction
The most important benefit of being ISO 9001:2015 certified is meeting the increasing requirements of customers. Customers want to receive the highest quality of service. ISO 9001 helps you consistently meet customer demands and a service that is dependable and can be relied on.

Reduced operating costs
When adopting a QMS there is a continual improvement of processes resulting in operational efficiencies saving you money overall. This includes your safety management, training procedures and even your staff rota.

Improved stakeholder relationships
Improve the perception of your organisation with staff, customers and suppliers.

Legal compliance
Learn how statutory and regulatory requirements affect your organisation and its customers. Having a robust quality management system in place will also help in establishing a positive safety culture.

Improved risk management
Greater consistency and traceability of products and services means problems are easier to avoid and rectify.

Proven business credentials
Becoming certified by an internationally recognised industry standard speaks volumes.

Ability to generate more business
When obtaining an ISO 9001 certification you must identify and analyse your business processes, this can only be achieved through effective quality management. Corresponding to the requirements will teach you more about how your business functions. Certification opens doors to more business as procurement specifications often require certification to carry out work. Moreover, people are more prepared to pay premium prices for your service if you are ISO certified.

Business, The Next Step, Next, Success, Stairs, Board

Getting started with ISO 9001

Becoming fully certified with ISO 9001 should take between 2-3 months. It is important to think about what the business wants to achieve, there are 5 main steps to become certified.

Step 1 – Preparation
The first step addresses how to prepare for the best execution of the ISO 9001 at your business. You would set the goals and objectives that will benefit your business, look at training and plan your project.

Step 2 – Documentation
To get certified, the standard states that every business must issue and maintain the following six documented procedures.
Control of Documents (4.2.3)
Control of Records (4.2.4)
Internal Audits (8.2.2)
Control of Nonconforming Product / Service (8.3)
Corrective Action (8.5.2)
Preventive Action (8.5.3)

Step 3: Implementation
Next, it is time to implement your ISO 9001 quality management system throughout your company. It is important that all employees understand how the new processes and requirements benefit them, you must ensure the benefits are clear.

Step 4 – Audit
You must evaluate the company to see if all ISO 9001 requirements are being followed.

Step 5 – Certification
After completing the internal audit an independent auditor will visit the business and complete a site audit. The auditor will also perform a site audit after you have collected records worth two months using the processes.

Using Papertrail for ISO 9001

Many Papertrail Subscribers use our off the shelf management system to demonstrate ISO compliance.

You can review and improve your equipment management system today for FREE! By downloading our 5 Step Management system review Workbook, created for equipment Managers to ensure your PPE management system is effective.

5 Step Review Workbook

Positive Safety Culture: Making Good Habits Stick

change-positive-safety-culture

In today’s world, Health and Safety can no longer be seen of as a nuisance. With increasing pressure on businesses to comply with legislation, be more transparent and continuously improve their systems, health and safety is quickly becoming a core focus for businesses of every size and shape.

But what’s the best, most effective way of creating a safe workplace? How can you make sure that the policies you set-up are always adhered to? Continue Reading…

Construction: The 10 Most Common Health and Safety Risks

construction tractor excavator site

Accident fatality rates in the construction industry are double that of the sector average, with rates of minor accidents almost incalculably more.

In such an ever-changing working environment this is hardly surprising. But many employers are still unaware of their duty of care to employees, visitors, and even those not directly related to their activities. Continue Reading…