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H&S Presentation on Plant Room

Health & Safety: Interactive Water
Feature Plant Room
By Akua Appiah
Aims and Objectives
 Investigate the plant room risks and explore different ways reduce and eliminate the risk
 Legal framework for each risk area and enforcement measures
 Discussions will be centred on the following health and safety issues ; Confined Space,
Hazardous Chemicals, Accessibility and Risk of Asbestos
Health and Safety Regulations in the workplace
• Over 200 people are killed each year in accidents at work and over one million people are injured. Over
two million suffer illnesses caused by, or made worse by, their work (HSE 2010).
• Health and Safety within the workplace is crucial especially where high risk activities are taking place.
So, to prevent accidents and ill health caused by work should be a key priority for everyone at work.
• A number of acts put in place to protect employees and employers It places a duty on all employers "to
ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare at work" of all their
• The Health and Safety Act 1974, states that employers have a duty of care to their staff while at the
work place, and to ensure their health and safety as far as is reasonably practicable.
• Management of Health and Safety Risk Regulation 1999
• RIDDOR 1995
Confined Space
• The plant room is in a confined space and is difficult to access.
• This leaves a small amount of space for staff to manoeuvre around the room without causing
accidents such as spillages (chemicals or cleaning products), or self inflected injuries from
sharp surface edges.
• Additionally, lack of space brings about issues regarding;
Poor ventilation, in the room causing increase of body temperature with could cause an
onset of headaches.
• Lack of oxygen in the room can result in uncouscioness and death
• Poor lighting increase risk of self inflected injuries and falls due to poor vision
Managing The Risk
 Management of Health and Safety at work regulation 1999 ensures staff are adequately
trained before entering the room
 The most relevant regulation for this risk is the Confined Space Regulation 1997. This
regulations states that where entrance into a confined area such as the plant room, is
unavoidable. Safe systems of work must be must be adhered to, and appropriate risk
assessments must be produced prior to staff entering the work area (HSE 2016).
 Provision of ventilation- Mechanical ventilation may be needed to make sure there is an
adequate supply of fresh air.
 Provision of rescue harnesses- Lifelines attached to harnesses should run back to a point
outside the confined space. (Personal Protective Equipment Regulations 2002)
 Communications- An adequate communications system is needed to enable
communication between people inside and outside the confined space and to summon help
in an emergency.
Hazardous Chemicals
The plant room contains the filter system pumping water for the Feature. It is also used as a
storage room for the storage of cleaning products and disinfection chemicals which are
considered hazardous.
Some facilities have the automatic chemical administration, but some features will have staff
manually inputting the dosing- which is risky due to the risk of under and over dosage.
Exposure could lead to Acute and Chronic health issues.
Managing The Risk
 Management and staff must adhere to Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH)
Regulations 2002- COSHH is the law that requires employers to control substances that are
hazardous to health
 Staff have the required training on manual dosage of disinfection an access to a guideline explain
the dosage procedure.
 Appropriate manual handling training to avoid injury when holding heavy containers.
 Staff should be provided with protective wear i.e. eye protection, gloves and mask in the case of dust
 Warning signs must be placed around the room and on the chemical bottles to warn the staff on the
hazards and what it contains.
 The plant room is only accessible by a ladder mounted on the wall of the plant room.
 Risk from falls from height can cause serious injury to staff
 Risk of the public having access into the room if the area is not supervised
 In the case of contamination, to shut down the water system and treat the water, if there is
no accessible way in the spread of bacteria will move rapidly.
 The transportation of chemicals into the plant room is also brought into question, as the
only access is by the ladder.
Managing The Risk
 Ladder entering the room needs to be kept in good repair checked regularly.
 Staff should be provided with protective wear i.e. gloves and boots for strong grip
 Safety signage to inform public it’s a no access area and detail the risk associated
 Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, to undertake risk
assessments to determine the risks present in the work place, and where
necessary put in place precautionary measures.
 Asbestos still kills around 5000 workers each year, this is more than the number of
people killed on the road (HSE 2015)
 Plant rooms are likely to have asbestos components. Boiler and pipe work, roof felt and
are all potential asbestos locations.
 When materials that contain asbestos are disturbed or damaged, fibers are released
into the air. When these fibers are inhaled they can cause serious diseases
 The Hazards include, Asbestosis, an inflammatory condition of lungs that can cause
shortness of breath, coughing , and eventually scarring of the lungs that makes it hard
to breathe.
 Mesothelioma, a rare cancer that affects the lining of the lungs and lower digestive tract
 There is a risk of Lung cancer especially with those who smoke are exposed to
Managing The Risk
• The new Control of Asbestos Regulations 2006 - These Regulations bring together the three
previous sets of Regulations covering the prohibition of asbestos, the control of asbestos at work
and asbestos licensing.
• Maintain the pipe work and the boiler in the room
• Management should ensure that staff receive asbestos awareness training which is required for
those working the setting.
• Take reasonable steps to identify where asbestos may exist, its amount and what condition it is
• To remove materials contain asbestos unless there is strong evidence to the contrary.
• Keep up-to-date records of the location and condition of asbestos-containing material
Environmental Health Intervention
Risk Assessment numerical Matrix to rate the risk
 Hierarchy of control – Elimination, Substitution , Engineering controls, Admintrative
Control and Personal Protective Clothing.
 Confined Space – Risk Assessments regular
 Accessibility- Risk Assessment
 Hazardous Chemicals – Improvement Notice
 Asbestos –Improvement Notice / Prohibition Notice