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Health and Safety for Factory Employees

Health and Safety

Factories are a place of work where it is foreseeable that accidents may arise. There are a number of factories in the UK which include car manufacturing and food production which involve employees working with machinery on a daily basis. Health and Safety is of paramount importance in workplaces and employers have a duty of care to ensure that employees have a safe working environment.

The Health and Safety Executive reported that 92 members of the public were killed due to work related activities in 2019/20.

Typical examples of factory accidents could include:

  1. Struck by a forklift truck
  2. Defective equipment and machinery causing injury;
  3. Slipping on a workplace floor;
  4. Tripping on a workplace floor;
  5. Chemical burns and exposure to chemicals
  6. Lifting and manual handling accidents

Covid-19

During the Covid pandemic, many employees in factories were furloughed and then returned to the workplace and measures were put in place to ensure that factories remained safe for the employees and covid secure and they had to consider social distancing, wearing masks, regular hand washing and cleaning of communal areas. Factories were required to carry out Covid-19 Risk Assessments in accordance with Government Guidelines. This included one way systems for entering the building and leaving the building and staggering work start times and finish times.

Risk Assessments and Training

Workplace’s and factories in particular will require all staff to have the appropriate health and safety training when they start a new job and regular refresher training. Risk assessments will be in place to reduce the risk of accidents occurring to the lowest practicable level and as an employee you need to be familiar with these. A risk assessment is a process by which you consider the task at hand, identify any risks or hazards and considering how someone can be harmed.

Personal Protective Equipment

Employers have a duty to provide you with personal protective equipment. This will depend on the nature of the work place. This can include:-

  1. Steel cap boots
  2. Protective eye wear such as goggles, visors and masks
  3. Head wear such as hard hats
  4. Gloves etc. depending on the nature of the work.
  5. Gowns
  6. Shoe covers
  7. Face shields
  8. Ear shields/ear plugs or muffs to protect hearing

It is essential as an employee that you adhere to wearing the correct personal protective equipment that has been provided to you to reduce the risk of an accident.

If you have an accident at work it is important to report the accident and have an accident book entry completed. Your employer will usually have a duty to report the accident to the Health and Safety Executive. It is imperative that you read any accident report entry that is completed by another member of staff regarding your own accident to ensure that the information recorded is accurate and correct. It can be more difficult to challenge an entry recorded at a later date.

Employers’ Liability Insurance

Every employer is required to have Employers’ Liability Insurance in place. If you are involved in an accident and wish to bring a claim it will be your employer’s insurer who will deal with the claim and investigate liability.

I have represented a number of people who have been involved in accidents within factories and warehouses. This has included accidents involving forklift trucks, dangerous machinery and unsafe places of work. Such accidents can result in life changing injuries and you may wish to consider bringing a potential Personal Injury Claim against your employer. Whilst this may seem daunting, your Employers’ Insurer will deal with investigating liability for any potential claim. Whilst employers will try to reduce the potential risks of accidents occurring they are aware that accidents can still arise.

If you are a factory worker and have been involved in an accident at work and are seeking expert legal guidance, please contact our leading Personal Injury solicitors on 0808 252 5231 to discuss your situation with us, or request a call back online.