online magazine - for the construction industry
|[an error occurred while processing this directive]
to expect when a health and safety inspector calls
and Safety Executive - Working with employers.
have the right to enter any workplace without giving notice, though
notice may be given where the inspector thinks it is appropriate. On
a normal inspection visit an inspector would expect to look at the
workplace, the work activities, your management of health and
safety, and to check that you are complying with health and safety
law. The inspector may offer guidance or advice to help you. He/she
may also talk to employees and their representatives, take
photographs and samples, serve improvement notices and take action
if there is a risk to health and safety which needs to be dealt with
Enforcing health and
On finding a breach of
health and safety law, the inspector will decide what action to
take. The action will depend on the nature of the breach, and will
be based on the principles set out in the Health and Safety
Commission's (HSC) Enforcement Policy Statement. The inspector
should provide employees or their representatives with information
about any action taken, or which is necessary for the purpose of
keeping them informed about matters affecting their health, safety
and welfare. Inspectors may take enforcement action in several ways
to deal with a breach of the law.
Trading Standards have drawn up a ten point plan for householders to
avoid the heartbreak and money worries caused by shoddy building
If workmen call uninvited always use your door chain before you open
the door. If you do not wish to deal with them tell them firmly. An
honest caller will not mind calling back at a more convenient time
when someone else can be there with you.
2. Be wary of
doorstep workmen who tell you what work you need doing -
particularly roofing repairs, drives, painting, gardening and tree
cutting. Don`t be afraid to say no.
3. Be cautious of
trades people who claim to have been working locally unless you have
seen their work and spoken to their customers.
4. If you
are approached please don`t agree to any work - always get quotes
from other companies first. The Renewal Services Departments in
County Councils will tell you if you are eligible for a grant.
Never pay in advance. Only pay for jobs after they have been
completed to your satisfaction.
6. Be wary of cheap "on
the side" jobs to avoid tax, Vat etc. They may not be
registered for VAT. You may have problems putting right faults
7. If you take people on make sure you have
their full name, address, home or office telephone number and the
registration number of any vehicle. All will be useful if you need
to find them after the work is completed.
8. Always get a
written quotation and full description of the work before you agree
to it being done. A written quotation is legally binding, a verbal
estimate is only a general guide.
9. Be wary of discounts
offered if you agree to your house being used as a showhouse.
Finally, if you have any problems with poor workmanship or
materials, failure to complete works , or are concerned in any way
about house repairs, or home improvements contact your local Trading
are a wide range of alarms on the market, both DIY &
professionally installed systems. Although alarms are heard going
off all the time, the 'Cry Wolf' syndrome does not necessarily apply
- from the burglars point of view, an alarm is an extra risk and
probably not worth taking. Your local police Crime Prevention
Officer should be able to offer advice on alarms. If you are indoors
when someone is breaking in, some alarms come with a 'panic button'
which you can use to set off the alarm, or you can use the control
panel fitted on the wall.