What is a Health & Safety Audit?
A Health & Safety Audit is an independent, objective and systematic review of health & safety management including the policy, planning and implementation, organisation, measurement and review of performance.
A Health and Safety Audit will establish the health and safety status of your organisation.
Why Undertake a Health & Safety Audit?
Under the Health & Safety at Work Act etc. 1974, a general duty is placed on employers, so far as it is reasonably practicable, to:
• ensure the health, safety and welfare at work of their employees
• maintain safe premises and systems of work including the provision of a written statement of safety policy
• provide any necessary information, instruction training and supervision.
A regular audit or examination of a company’s health & safety management system is therefore necessary to ensure compliance with all current legislation, including the above.
Woodworking and joinery businesses that contravene health & safety law face huge penalties and will be liable to pay HSE a £124/hour ‘fee for intervention’, if, during an HSE inspection or investigation, a material breach of health & safety law is discovered. Fees would apply up to the point where HSE’s intervention in supporting businesses in putting matters right has concluded.
Joinery businesses need to be on high alert as HSE inspections will be focused on higher risk areas such as construction, as well as companies with incidents or a track record of poor performance.
How can the BWF Help?
To determine a company’s current compliance and knowledge of its responsibilities under the legislation, an inspection visit will be arranged and a plan for corrective action prepared. The BWF has negotiated exclusive rates with experienced health & safety advisors to bring you a simple value for money package.
The service includes a site visit at your place of work, undertaking the health & safety audit and then afterwards producing a report that will not only suggest where your health and safety needs to be improved, but also how to achieve such improvements. While undertaking the audit, the advisor will also spend time with a representative of your company, providing them with guidance on how to achieve the audit internally.
BWF members are also reminded that they can download the BWF guide to Health and Safety in the Woodworking industry for free, in addition to our written policy statements, draft risk assessments, and a set of Machine Safety Cards.