Workplace health and safety

Overview

Last Modified  13 June 2013

Key points

  • It is the employer's responsibility to ensure that their employees observe health and safety legislation. An employer owes a duty of reasonable care to its employees. An employer has a non-delegable duty to select proper and competent employees, to provide them with adequate materials and resources for the work, and to operate a safe system of working.
  • Employees owe a duty of care to their employers to act in a safe manner whilst working for them.
  • When dealing with workplace injuries, the principal legislation that employers must adhere to is the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 (HASWA).
  • It is good practice to monitor the health of employees.
  • If a company employs five or more people, it must have a written health and safety policy.
  • Employers are required to carry out a risk assessment to identify the measures necessary to comply with health and safety law.
  • Employers and line managers should also know how to comply with accident reporting procedures under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 1995 (RIDDOR) with changes effective from 6 April 2012.
  • To avoid liability for injuries suffered by workers, employers must observe statutory duties and take reasonable care to operate a safe system of work.
  • Employers can also refer to the Health and Safety Executive's website for further health and safety procedures and employment law updates.