Occupational Health & Safety Service Standards

(hs.a) Accident Notifications

[NOTE these are additional steps to be read in conjunction with the above general service standards]

1. Accident Notification concerning an area which falls to the authority to enforce will be assessed for investigation (or not) by officers on receipt, using the “Incident Investigation Selection Procedure”. The decision will be noted on the “Incident Investigation” front sheet. If a major accident and/or fatality then investigation should take place ideally immediately but within 48 hours (excludes weekends/holidays). A separate procedure is in place to deal with Major Incidents in conjunction with other councils and the HSE.

2. Where we determine an accident should be investigated we will:

  • Contact the person notifying the accident ideally within 2 working days either by phone or by standard letter;
  • Attempt within 2 working days to discuss the situation with complainant and/or witnesses and give them advise on the legal position and possible outcomes;
  • Liaise where necessary with other local authorities (especially those who have Lead Authority status for premises concerned) and/or the HSE within 2 working days of the notification.
  • Decide immediately after completing the above if a more formal investigation and site visit is required and thereafter:
  • We will take evidence as required;
  • We will advise persons in control of the work activity of the legal position and in particular give specific instructions as to the further protection of their staff and others affected by their undertaking;
  • Refer to other agencies any matters which fall to them to enforce within 2 working days of our awareness of their involvement;
  • At the conclusion of the investigation we will contact those who have been involved in the case and inform them of the outcome;
  • Respond to solicitors enquiries regarding civil cases within 14 calendar days

(hs.b) Risk Inspections

1. We will draw up an annual programme at the beginning of the financial year based on the current health & safety risk scores for commercial premises. This programme will form the basis of the annual list of health & safety premises risk inspections as based on LAC 67/2 ‘Advice to Local Authorities on Inspection Programmes and an Inspection Rating System). Other premises may be added to the annual programme as specific project areas, based on local knowledge or emerging areas of concern.

2. Officers will:

  • Check the premises file record (both computer and hard copy)
  • Assess previous risk score and individual rating criteria.
  • Assess any relevant complaints, information on layout and management systems etc.
  • Discuss any contentious issues with the previous case officer and PEHO
  • Ensure all equipment, notices, inspection pro-forma and report forms are available for the inspection.
  • Visit the premises, identify and interview the proprietor.
  • Carry out the risk inspection, taking into account HELA advise and priorities.
  • Give an immediate written report and agree an action plan at the conclusion of the audit. A copy will be left with the business;
  • Confirm any legal requirements in writing within 7 working days;
  • Consider whether further visits/action is necessary by discussion and peer/commercial team review, record the agreement and inform the business as required.