Employers have a legal responsibility to ensure that their staff and visitors operate in a safe environment. Introducing a few simple safety checks to be carried out each month means you reduce the risk of an accident and ensure your office or workplace is equipped properly should an event such as a fire occur.
7 Monthly Safety Tasks for Offices
Here are our 7 simple monthly safety tasks you need to incorporate into your office processes. Each one should take you no more than a few minutes and can actually help save people from injury – in some circumstances they could help save a life.
Visual Inspection of Electrical Leads and Plugs
Most offices and business have a range of electrical equipment on desks and lying around the floor. We tend to leave these plugged in and forget about them, trusting that they’ll continue to work safely.
A monthly visual inspection is worthwhile. It’s easy to have a quick walk around and check leads and plugs and see if any or frayed or damaged and need to be replaced. Sockets are quite brittle and can crack, while wires can be pulled if they are left out in the open and connections damaged. Don’t forget to check equipment like desktop pcs, laptops and printers, and especially the kitchen kettle.
Inspect Fire Extinguishers
You should inspect equipment like fire extinguishers on a regular basis – you certainly want them to be in good working order if you need them. Take a look at the seals and examine them for any damage or wear, make sure they are present, you’ll be surprised at how many go missing! If you spot something that looks wrong, then the fire extinguisher should be inspected by an expert or replaced immediately.
Test the Fire Alarm
Most businesses have a fire alarm but how often does it get tested? This is the warning for people to vacate the premises, so if it’s not working properly the end result can be catastrophic. Locate the fire alarm panel and run a test once a month to make sure everything is operating properly and all areas of the office can hear the warning.
Check Emergency Lighting
Many businesses have emergency lighting for when the power suddenly fails. Check that this is working – it’s vital should the electricity switch off and people have to find the exits in the dark.
You should have various signage around the place indicating where people need to go in the event of an emergency, including around emergency exits. Check these are all in place and that they can be easily read. Also check that the instructions on fire extinguishers can be read properly and that they are correct for the extinguisher they are placed next to.
Check Emergency Exits and Fire Doors
We often ignore emergency exits. They can get blocked with stuff, for example, when an employee puts down a box or bunch of files and leaves them there. You should make sure that all exits are clear of obstructions at all times. Also take a moment to open and close all emergency exits to see if they are working properly. Fire doors should be kept closed at all times, make sure this practice is reiterated to employees and ensure that the door seals are not loose or damaged.
Keep a Log of All Safety Activities
All businesses should have a set process for monitoring their safety procedures. That means keeping a log of everything you do to keep the office safe and a diary/calendar of when checks need to be carried out. Designating a set employee such as the office manager to undertake these checks and making it part of their job description works better than spreading responsibility across a number of employees.
As with all Health and Safety, this activity needs to be repeated on a regular basis to ensure the work environment remains a safe and productive one! If you require assistance with any of these 7 Monthly Safety Tasks for Offices, please get in touch, call us on 0330 6600264 or email [email protected]
Until Next time, stay safe.