These days there are many safety checks on everything we come across. From our workplaces to town centres and any equipment we use, everything is rigorously tested to make sure it is safe for its purpose. Hear we look at some areas where health and safety has an impact.
Car safety has improved dramatically over the last few decades. When the automobile was first used there were no regulations and the industry was still relatively unregulated until half way through the last century. Seat beats have been the most important development in car safety and have been given credit for saving thousands of lives. Car manufacturers started introducing seat belts in the late 1950's with Volvo the first to do so. They were made compulsory in the front of cars in 1983 but not in the back until 1991. More recently air bags have been introduced by manufacturers. These are not compulsory but almost all new cars now have them installed.
Cars have to go through rigorous safety check to qualify as road worthy, which includes crash tests. Safety records are also used as a marketing tool by manufacturers, with those with the best records selling cars off the back of this. Cars are specifically designed to be as safe as possible. As well as checks before they are put on the road, cars also have to go through an MOT (specific to the UK). This is a group of tests carried out three years after a car is first used, and then every year thereafter. These test decide whether a car is deemed safe for use on the road.
PAT Testing stands for Portable Appliance Testing and is the regulatory test that must legally be carried out regularly on portable appliances. A PAT test will give and pass or fail result that will tell the users whether or not it is safe for use. PAT Testing is required for any portable appliances that are in public use. This includes any appliances (including fridges and ovens) that are supplied as part of a rented property, any equipment used in schools or the workplace, and anything that is used by or around the general public.
All public buildings are now subject to health and safety checks and regulations. They have to abide by certain rules to make sure the public are kept as safe as possible. Fire prevention methods need to be in operation and there must be sufficient fire escapes that are clearly marked. Any potential dangers, such as slippery floors, also need to marked. Other public areas also have regulations they must abide by.
Strict health and safety rules apply to all places of work. They are subject to many of the same health and safety regulations as public buildings. Regulations have been put in place to protect staff, and if applicable, customers. Employees need to be trained correctly so they are able to use any dangerous equipment correctly. Accidents also need to be recorded and reviewed to make sure a similar incident does not occur again if avoidable. Rules vary depending on the industry.
RESTAURANT & OTHER EATERIES
There are strict regulations for restaurants and eateries with regard to hygiene. For example, staff have to wash their hand regularly. Depending on the establishment and the job role specific clothing may have to be worn and other clothing may be banned. Employees with long hair who work in the kitchen must wear a hair net or have their hair tied back. Restaurants are subject to regular inspections and there can be on-the-spot inspections by health and safety officers.
HOSPITALS AND MEDICAL CENTRES
Not surprisingly there are many regulations around medical care. It is important that decease is not spread amongst patients so there are many rules to prevent this. Visitors and staff are asked to rub their hands with alcohol to sterilise them. Everything possible needs to be done to keep the risk of spreading infection to a minimum.
Andrew Marshall ©
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