small business health and safety
Safety sign for small business premise
When you have a number of health and safety boxes to tick, it’s easy to get things wrong.

Once you’ve put up information and safety signs around your premises, you’ll have all sorts of other things to worry about. This, unfortunately, can mean mistakes are made. Some of the most common health and safety issues that people get wrong are surprisingly simple to sort out. The problem is, if you don’t know about them, they could prove very costly indeed.

Not having the right equipment can be extremely hazardous. For example, according to the Health & Safety (First Aid) Regulations 1981 (UK) code of practice, employers must “provide, or ensure that there are provided, such equipment and facilities as are adequate and appropriate in the circumstances for enabling first-aid to be rendered to his employees if they are injured or become ill at work.”

A common mistake people make is putting together a first aid kit themselves, or replacing items from the kit with substandard products. It may well seem as if a box of plasters and a packet of pain killer tablets will be enough to cope with injuries – but you could find you are way off the mark. The kind of retail first aid kits you’ll see available from reputable sellers are put together by professionals in the field and have items that are suitable for a range of emergency situations. If you care about your employees, you should invest in at least one of these.

Another thing to some businesses tend to forget is that health and safety doesn’t begin and end with doing a risk assessment and putting together a policy. Of course, these things are essential, but as your business grows and develops, changes to your workplace may mean things need to be revised. The law requires you to have a “˜competent person’ in place to make sure your policy is in force. However, this might also mean safety and information signs are updated and equipment purchased when required.

Make sure though, that there is no misleading information or incomplete plans for emergency procedures that trip you or your employees up. If you need some extra advice on what you need and what you don’t need, try contacting the UK Health and Safety Executive – or just visiting their site for more information.