While it is true to state that health & safety measures and first aid training are of great importance to every workplace in every sector, it is also true to state that safety training within the waste management and recycling industries is arguably even more important.
This is because businesses operating within these sectors are viewed as among the most dangerous places to work in the UK. In an annual report by HSE for 2013/14, it was revealed that only 0.5% of employees work in this industry but account for 2.6% of all reported injuries.
The waste management and recycling industries are wide ranging and inclusive of both commercial and domestic waste. Staff operating within these sectors face different challenges daily and often come into contact not only with numerous substances, materials and pieces of machinery, but face various hazards in their working day.
As a result of the high-risk nature of these industries, there are many regulations in place to help keep workers safe and business owners have a duty of care to their staff and to the environment.
Among the regulations in place already is one that stipulates the collection of paper, metal, plastic and glass be made separately in order to protect staff and prevent accidents and injuries. There is also regulation regarding the production, transport and disposal of hazardous waste, and the disposal of electrical and electronic equipment, to ensure it’s done so safely.
What More Can Be Done To Keep Workers Safe?
There are plenty of initiatives that business owners within the waste management and recycling sectors can adopt in order to keep their staff safe.
All staff who work in these sectors should be fully trained on the day-to-day tasks involved in their role as well as with operating the machinery safely. As part of this training, staff should be equipped with the skills and knowledge to spot potential hazards and risks, and know what steps can be taken to prevent accidents and injuries from occurring in the first place.
There is a lot of on-site traffic at waste management companies and recycling firms and extra measures should be adopted to keep everyone safe and out of harm’s way. This might include ensuring the drivers are fully trained and alert to potential hazards, are given high visibility clothing so those on the ground can see them, and have an understanding of the impact different factors have on safety. For example, drivers should be aware that weather conditions need to be adapted to.
Long Way Round
It’s vital that business owners fulfil their duty of care to all staff and never take shortcuts in operational procedures or staff training.
Wellbeing measures such as vaccinating employees against the risk of infections like hepatitis are a great investment. Also, it’s sensible to educate staff to know how to handle various materials and be alert for potential harmful substances, to reduce the likelihood of accidents and injuries.
Regular health & safety training makes all the difference, which is why Live For Work provides different levels of courses aimed to meet the different needs of businesses and individuals. There are basic first aid courses, intensive health & safety courses, as well as refresher courses for those in need of an overview.
We will help your waste management or recycling firm stay safe, productive and efficiently managed. Contact us now