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Health & Safety at Work Act 1974 

Introduction
The Shield Group acknowledges that as an employer it has responsibilities for providing a safe and healthy environment for its employees. It is our policy to work towards the elimination of work related accidents and to achieve high levels of operational safety. We are also committed to the protection of the environment and the steps we propose to take are  described below.

We will endeavour to conduct our works in accordance with the requirements of the Health and Safety Act 1974 and any other relevant statute that may apply to ourselves either directly or at specific projects on which we work. This guide has been produced to help both ourselves, our employees and our clients ensure that works can be conducted safely and comply with the relevant statutory requirements. However, it is stated that this guide cannot encompass every contingency.

Statutory Obligations
All employees are required to conduct their working operations in accordance with the requirements of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and any other and any other relevant statute that may apply to ourselves either directly or at specific projects on which we work.

Health & Safety at Work – Policy Statements
It is our policy to follow proper health and safety standards in order to prevent injury or ill health to our employees, those of our clients or any others who may be affected by our activities. We believe that health and safety standards contribute towards and enhance our business performance and will promote employee participation and observance of standards to maintain and improve on health and safety at work. Whilst overall responsibilities lie with management, every employee also has a duty to ensure that policies and arrangements are followed. To this end we will endeavour to ensure that all employees are kept informed of existing or revised health and safety requirements either via documentation or at regular meetings. We will also provide whatever training is deemed necessary to ensure that our employees can comply with the responsibilities that apply to them.

Duties to Employees.
We will ensure the health, safety and welfare of our employees as far as is reasonably practicable.

Duties to others (Public Safety)
We will conduct our works in a manner that does not place any risk to the health and safety of others which will include the employees of other contractors and visitors who may be on the site or any other party who may be on or passing the site. All working operations are undertaken with safety of the public in mind. Prior to any works commencing our surveyor will assess the risks involved with the individual site and prepare a Risk Assessment and Individual Site Specific Method Statement. Our operatives will follow these methods whilst undertaking any works onsite.

Employee Responsibilities
All employees have a duty of care in respect of all matters of health and safety. This is to themselves and to others who could be affected by their acts.
Employees are required to co-operate with both our own requirements and those of any site on which we work.

Reporting of Accidents etc.
All accidents are to be reported to immediately both to ourselves and the site manager or other official. Where available, the site accident book should also be completed.
All accidents involving our employees or working operation will be investigated and the cause established.
Where required, a report detailing what happened, how it happened and what will be done to prevent a repeat will be prepared

Entry to controlled sites.
Where appropriate, employees will be asked to report to the clients site office at every visit to the site. It is normally essential for our work vehicles to be positioned as close to the areas on which we are working as possible. However, we will endeavour to comply with specific site requirements or negotiate alternative arrangements as necessary.

Hazardous Materials and Substances COSHH
We will comply with the requirements of the COSHH Regulations 1994. We will   supply details of any hazardous substance used upon request or as an integral part of any works proposal that we prepare.
Our COSHH (link) section provides further information in this respect. METHOD STATEMENTS (link) are also available on this website.

Plant and Equipment
We will endeavour to maintain our vehicles and equipment in good mechanical   order. All such vehicles and equipment must be operated in a competent manner and be under the control of a competent employee who will be responsible for ensuring that no unauthorised persons are allowed to operate it. On occasion, we may need to hire specialist or pieces of equipment (e.g. hydraulic access platforms) to enable our work to be conducted safely. Where appropriate, proper maintenance and safety certificates etc will be requested from those supplying the equipment. Certificates showing that our employees are competent to use the equipment will also be requested.

Protective Equipment
All employees are provided with any necessary personal protective clothing and equipment. This will include safety helmets and appropriate eye protection, respiratory equipment, ear defenders etc. We also require our employees to have footwear appropriate to the type of work they are undertaking. Steel capped safety boots are to be worn where required but whilst we insist on this employees are required to purchase their own footwear although we will source such footwear if necessary.
All operatives will be made aware of why PPE is needed, when it is to be used, repaired or replaced and its limitations. Instruction, training and supervision will be given to its uses. All operatives should wear their PPE at all times they are exposed to any risk. There are no exceptions even if the job will take a ‘few minutes’.  Shield will regularly check the use of PPE and investigate any reasons for non-use. Safety signs will be displayed as useful reminders to PPE and the reasons it is to be worn.

Working at Heights
In the majority of cases our work does not involve working at height. However in the event that work cannot be conducted safely from ground level we will insist upon suitable scaffolding, hydraulic platforms or tower scaffolds being used. Ordinarily we will have identified any such access requirement prior to commencing our work and our requirements will usually have been identified in our works proposals.