If you are running a land surveying business, then health and safety is an important topic to consider. It will help you ensure that all your staff are safe and well whilst at work, but also that they can continue working after an accident or injury. You need to make sure that everyone knows what their responsibilities are when it comes to their own safety and the safety of others around them.
Write up a health and safety policy
A health and safety plan is a document that outlines how you will keep your workers, clients, and the general public safe. You should include information about:
- The training procedures for all employees
- How to keep records of accidents or near misses
- The steps to take if someone is injured on site
- What emergency services you require (ambulance, fire department etc.) To write a health and safety policy that meets government regulations, it’s important to follow some key points:
- Identify hazards at work sites; assess the risks involved with each one; then decide how best to manage them. This could mean changing procedures so that workers don’t come into contact with dangerous equipment or chemicals. It might also mean creating additional safety measures such as wearing protective clothing or setting up guardrails around construction sites where people are at risk of falling off scaffolding.
Prepare and plan a accident and injury log book
An accident and injury log book is a document that records all of your company’s accidents and injuries.
When you keep track of these incidents you can use them to improve the health and safety practices in your workplace.
The Health and Safety Executive advise that recording these incidents will allow you to:
- identify any patterns or trends;
- assess whether changes need to be made;
- determine if further training is needed for any employees who work with clients, or on site at customers’ premises.
Inducting all your land surveyors (even the ones in the office)
Induction is important for all employees, but especially so for those working in the field.
Induction covers the following topics:
- OSHA standards, including injury and illness prevention, confined space entry, fall protection, electrical hazards and more.
- Environmental concerns such as water quality, soil contamination and wildlife management.
- Site specific procedures to avoid high traffic areas or construction sites if possible.
- Communication protocol and chain-of-command protocol within your company’s structure (if it has one).
Provide PPE to all your staff at induction
Provide PPE for all staff at induction and every time you start a job. This is particularly important if you’re going to be working with heavy machinery or in environments that are high risk (such as areas prone to flooding or landslides). Make sure everyone understands how to use their PPE correctly, and make sure they know when it’s appropriate to take it off—for instance, when working in temperatures above 30 degrees Celsius.
Follow the CDM regulation
CDM is the Construction (Design and Management) Regulation. This is a set of rules that you must follow when managing construction projects where there is an increased risk of harm to people or their environment, including health and safety issues.
This can be very important for land surveying businesses as there are many hazards associated with carrying out site surveys. These include:
- slips and trips;
- contact with dangerous machinery;
- falls from height or into water; and
- electric shocks.
Run regular toolbox talk covering new and emerging health and safety topics
As a business owner, you’re likely to be involved in the daily operation of your surveyors. This means that you may not always be able to keep up-to-date with all the latest health and safety topics.
However, running regular toolbox talks will help you stay informed about new and emerging issues that could threaten your company’s reputation and bottom line. The best way to do this is by holding regular meetings where employees can raise any issues they have with working conditions or equipment (if they don’t feel comfortable doing so directly). This will ensure that everyone has an opportunity to share their concerns and learn how best to deal with them.
Send your staff on training for their role
When you send your staff on training, it’s important to keep track of their progress. You can do this by creating a spreadsheet or document that records each employee’s name and the date they have completed their training. This will help you keep track of when everyone has been trained and also allows you to see which areas need more focused attention.
Send your senior site staff on SMSTS (Site management safety training scheme)
SMSTS is a mandatory course for those who are in charge of the health and safety of others. It is a three day course that covers the following topics:
- Site Layout, Walkways, Lighting and Signs
- Excavations and Shoring
- Ground Conditions
- Electrical Safety,
- Construction and Maintenance of Electrical Systems
- Selection and Use of Personal Protective Equipment
- Workplace Hazard Identification
Send your Management team on IOSH or NEBOSH health and safety courses
If you run a business, and especially if you have a land surveying element to your business, you will need to consider the health and safety implications. If you are running a large team of staff, this is even more important. It’s good practice for all employees in any organisation to be aware of their own responsibilities and what they can do to protect themselves and others from harm.
As well as providing formal training for staff on these topics, we would recommend that any member of management also attends an appropriate course such as IOSH or NEBOSH (National Examination Board in Occupational Safety & Health). This will provide them with an understanding of how best to manage risk within their own departments – it’s all too easy for those who aren’t directly involved in day-to-day operations not realise that certain aspects may need attention until something goes wrong!
Undertake Regularly Risk assessment and update your risk register
Risk assessment is a process of identifying hazards and assessing the risks they pose. It’s a good way to identify risks and control them.
A risk assessment will help you to:
- identify and evaluate all potential hazards that may affect your business, employees and customers;
- assess the likelihood of each threat occurring; and
- determine how much damage it could cause if it does occur.
Prepare and Issue RAMS at the start of every job
At the start of every job, you should prepare a RAMS (Risk Assessment and Method Statement) for your employees to use. The RAMS will help you identify any health and safety risks associated with the job and it will outline how these risks are controlled.
A risk assessment is a process that identifies the potential hazards, their likelihood of occurring and their severity if they do occur. Once this is done, we can then develop ways to control the risk by either removing them completely or reducing them as much as possible. A method statement is then written describing how each of these controls work, what they look like and where they’re positioned on site so that everyone can easily access them when needed
Follow health and safety procedures at all times
- Follow health and safety procedures at all times to ensure the well-being of your employees, clients, and yourself.*
- If you don’t follow health and safety procedures, you may be held liable for any injuries that occur as a result.*You should also make sure that everyone working with or for you is aware of what the rules are around health and safety in your business.
For example, it’s important that people who work on construction sites wear protective gear like hard hats to protect their heads from falling objects. It’s also common practice for businesses to provide goggles or glasses when using power tools so that workers’ eyes won’t be hurt if something flies off the tool unexpectedly (for example, if someone accidentally drops something).
One thing is for sure, if you don’t have a health and safety plan in place and you don’t follow it, then you will be left open to all sorts of risks. If there is one thing that every land surveying business should take away from this article, it should be the importance of keeping your staff safe at work.