Health and Safety At Work Act 1974
The purpose of this act is to promote, stimulate and encourage high standards of health and safety at work. It protects not only all people at work – whether employers, employees, or self employed – but also the health and safety of the general public who may be affected by work activities.
Main Duties of employers
Employers must safeguard so far as reasonably practicable the health, safety and welfare of the people who work for them. This
applies in particular to the provision and maintenance of safe plant and systems of work, and covers all machinery, equipment and appliances used.
All reasonably practicable precautions must be taken in the use and handling of any substance likely to cause a risk to health. All storage and transport arrangements should be kept under review.
Employers need to provide any necessary information, instruction and training in safe practices. Consider specific training needs with particular reference to processes and activities with special hazards.
Provide a safe place of work including safe means of access to and egress from it. Welfare facilities and arrangements must be adequate.
Duties to others
An employer must carry out his work in such a way that it does not affect the health and safety of others i.e. other employees, members of the public.
Duties of employees
All employees must take reasonable care for the health and safety of themselves and of other persons who may be affected by what they do, or fail to do, at work. This duty implies positive steps to understand the hazards in the workplace, to comply with safety rules and procedures, and to ensure that nothing they do or fail to do puts themselves or others at risk.