Workplace Vehicle & Transport: Safety Overview
Workplace Vehicle & Transport Safety
Workplace vehicle and transport safety is a key concern for employers in the UK. The law requires employers to assess and manage the risks associated with workplace vehicles and transport to ensure the safety of employees and other people who may be affected by vehicle movements.
Under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, employers are responsible for ensuring that their workplace is safe and that employees are not exposed to unnecessary risks. This includes the safe movement of vehicles and transport in the workplace.
Employers are required to conduct a risk assessment to identify the hazards associated with vehicle and transport movements in the workplace. This includes assessing the risk of collisions, the risk of injury from vehicles reversing or manoeuvring, and the risk of injury to pedestrians. The risk assessment should take into account the specific characteristics of the workplace, such as the layout, the type of vehicles used, and the number of employees who may be affected by vehicle movements.
Once the risk assessment has been conducted, employers are required to implement measures to control the identified risks. This may include implementing traffic management systems, such as one-way systems, traffic lights, and speed limits, to reduce the risk of collisions. Employers may also consider installing barriers and warning signs to protect employees and other people who may be affected by vehicle movements.
Employers are also required to provide training to employees who drive vehicles in the workplace, or who may be affected by vehicle movements. This training should include information on the risks associated with vehicle movements, the traffic management systems in place, and the safe operation of vehicles in the workplace.
In addition, employers are required to ensure that vehicles used in the workplace are maintained in a safe condition and that regular safety checks are carried out. This includes ensuring that brakes, steering, and lights are in good working order, and that vehicles are clean and in good condition.
Employers must also ensure that transport arrangements, such as the loading and unloading of goods, are carried out in a safe manner. This includes providing adequate training to employees on the safe use of equipment and the safe handling of goods.
In summary, the UK law requires employers to ensure the safe movement of vehicles and transport in the workplace by conducting a risk assessment, implementing measures to control identified risks, providing training to employees, ensuring that vehicles are maintained in a safe condition, and ensuring that transport arrangements are carried out in a safe manner. These measures are to protect employees and other people who may be affected by vehicle and transport movements.
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Research indicates that 90% of all workplaces have had workplace transport accidents within the last year, this demonstrates that it is a key area for consideration in improving safety. Whilst the principal & general requirements for managing health & safety are clearly defined in the various Regulations, the requirements and associated standards to be achieved are much less clear for vehicles; with the operator of the site [the first port of call in an official vehicle accident investigation] often being poorly aware of the “how”, or even the “why”, of complying.