FAQ's

A series of free resources on HR, employment law and health & safety issues, compiled by our in-house experts.

What are Reporting of Injuries Diseases and Dangerous Occurrence Regulations (RIDDOR)?
RIDDOR details the requirements for the reporting of incidents that arise out of, or in connection with work. This legislation places a duty on employers to report certain injuries, medical conditions, or occurrences to the enforcement authority, which in most cases is either the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) or the local Environmental Health department.
Is Portable Appliance Testing (PAT) a legal requirement for my business?
There is no strict legal requirement to conduct PAT testing, the law simply requires an employer to ensure that their electrical equipment is maintained to prevent danger. It does not say how this should be done or how often. However, PAT testing is the recommended and easiest way of complying with the relevant legislation.
Who enforces health and safety law?
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and the Local Authorities Environmental Health departments are the two main enforcing bodies in the United Kingdom. The HSE oversees areas such as factories, construction sites and farms, while the Environmental Health departments are responsible for areas such as shops, offices, and hotels.
Who should provide my employees with personal protective equipment (PPE)?
Employers should provide appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) and training in its usage to their employees wherever there is a risk to health and safety that cannot be controlled by other methods. The cost of the PPE must be at the expense of the employer, not the employee.
What is the minimum working temperature in the workplace?
There is no strict law for a minimum or maximum temperature, but during working hours the temperature in all workplaces inside buildings must be reasonable. However, an approved code of practice does state that the minimum temperature in a workplace should normally be at least 16 °C. If the work involves rigorous physical effort, the temperature should be at least 13 °C.
Does my business need to conduct risk assessments?
Current legislation requires that employers identify any risks that arise out of work activities that can affect employees and non-employees or any other persons via the risk assessment process. The assessments must be recorded where the business employs five or more people.
Who is responsible for health and safety in my business?
Everyone has responsibilities under health and safety law, although the primary duty is that of the employer.
Does my business really need Employers Liability insurance?
Employers are required (subject to a few very specific exemptions) to take out and maintain an insurance policy against liability for bodily injury and disease sustained by employees in the course of their employment under the Employers’ Liability (Compulsory Insurance) Act.
Does the law require that my organisation has a written health and safety policy?
An employer who employs five or more persons must prepare a written statement of general health and safety policy, set down the organisation and arrangements for carrying out the policy, revise and up-date the document as necessary and bring the policy and arrangements to the attention of all employees.

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