Reviewing Your Safety System - The Policy
With the recent Health and Safety at Work Act and new regulations it is a good time to review your safety system to ensure that it is fit for purpose. For many organisations the H&S policy is the driving document, however more will be required than just revamping the wording to suit the new legislation. I recommend that you first stand back and look at the big risks to your organisation. Think of the stuff that keeps you awake at night, the big events that, could get you in the paper or that will create the most hassle for you. Check through the accident / incident records for the last few years, ask your supervisors and hands on staff what isn’t working for them. If done right launching a new policy can be a great way to draw a line in the sand on bad practices that have been creeping in.
Your H&S Policy should be more than a rewrite of the sentiments of the act, you don’t need to state the obvious, everyone knows that you don’t plan on harming anyone, it’s the law! Another failing can be the absence of specific instructions. I see many policy’s that contain great lofty ideals but give little in the way of clear direction to staff. For example, supervisors should know that they are required to assess their workers competence both when a worker first starts and when circumstances require it, such as when you introduce new equipment. This responsibility should be clearly stated in the policy.
WorkSafe have produced an excellent guide for those responsible for writing health and safety documents in the workplace. Click on the link below to download a copy.
If you need to get a better idea of your organisations real risks give us a call, we would be happy to help you quantify your risks and get some new energy in to your workplace safety. Pete@cubesafety.co.nz