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Health and Safety Arrangements

The University Health and Safety Policy details the organisation's aims with respect to health and safety and the individual responsibilites and expectations of specific roles.

The information below details the practical arrangements for managing health and safety and implementing a robust health and safety management system.

Each Director of Professional Service has ultimate responsibility for health and safety management within their own area. Details of the staff within each area can be found on the website for the service.

Each line manager has specific responsibilities for health and safety as detailed in the University Health and Safety Policy.

Each professional service has access to a dedicated Health and Safety Coordinator to assist with the development and implementation of health and safety arrangements.They can provide advice, monitoring and training in a variety of health and safety topics.

Details of the Health and Safety Coordinator for your area can be found on the Local Safety Contact pages.

The role of the Health and Safety Coordinator is principally to provide support and advice within their school or professional service.

Their responsibilities include:

  • providing advice in relation to local risk assessments;
  • maintaining records of accidents or incidents and assisting with investigations;
  • maintaining copies of local risk assessments;
  • maintaining records of qualification or competency certificates, where these are required by legislative or University requirements;
  • arranging or providing health and safety training to staff within their area;
  • participating in training to develop their own skills and competence;
  • maintaining and preparing safety records in preparation for the health and safety audits;
  • monitoring safe working practices within their area;
  • seeking advice from Health, Safety & Wellbeing where there is a lack of understanding.

The role of the Building Controller is to:

  • communicate the Building Evacuation Plan to the building users;
  • assist in the preparation of Personal Emergency Evacuation Plans (PEEP's);
  • maintain a sufficient number of Deputy Building Controllers to cover for their absence;
  • co-opt a sufficient number of staff to assist with the safe evacuation all areas of the building;
  • operate as the information centre and liaise with the external emergency services or incident controller in an emergency situation.

All accidents, near misses and hazards must be reported to Health, Safety & Wellbeing without delay and always within 24 hrs.

If an accident has resulted in serious injury, or a hazard is so serious that it could result in an accident in the immediate future, it is important that these facts are reported immediately by contacting a member of the Safety Team directly.

Further details on how to report your accident or near miss can be found on the dedicated Reporting Page.

Following an accident, the Health and Safety Administrator in Health, Safety & Wellbeing undertakes an initial assessment to determine if a more detail investigation is needed. If a detailed investigation is required, this would be performed by the Health and Safety Coordinator. Where corrective action is required to prevent a recurrence, the Health and Safety Coordinator would advise/arrange as appropriate.

The University maintains an adequate number of first aiders for general first aid provision on campus.

To locate a first aider on main campus please contact ext. 53333 or 0161 295 3333

At Media City (MCUK) please contact ext. 50100 or 0161 295 0100

In addition, each school or professional service identifies any unique risk where additional first aiders may be required. These include areas such as laboratories, clinics, workshops, swimming pool, etc.

The first aid provision in these areas is specific for the risk identified in the risk assessment and will not be utilised as general first aid.

Detailed evacuation plans are available for each building. These can be found on the dedicated Fire Safety page and via the Building Controller for the Building.

Visitors are informed of the action to take via the fire action notices posted in each of the buildings. 

Information for visitors with mobility impairment can be found on the Mobility Action notices. These are displayed in each of the lifts and at the refuge points.

Members of staff are made aware of the action to take in the event of a fire during the mandatory Health and Safety Induction. Students are made aware of this information via a training video used during their Programme Induction.

In addition, this information for students is available on the Blackboard site on the Health and Safety Course.

The University has installed a Deaf Alerter system, which enables deaf people to be made aware of an emergency evacuation situation when on University premises.

The system requires the individual to wear a small pager, which receives a radio signal transmitted when the emergency alarm is activated.

Further information about the system and how individuals obtain the devices can be found on the detailed Fire Safety pages.

Where an individual needs assistance to leave a building in an emergency evacuation, the University has detailed processes and systems in place to enable this.

For staff members an individual Personal Emergency Evacuation Plan (PEEP) is prepared in conjunction with the Building Contoller for the Building.

For students a generic PEEP is provided, which covers the likelihood that the student could be in any building at any time.

Each building has Mobility Action notices posted in the lifts and at the refuge points to enable visitors to be aware of the action to take in the event of an evacuation.

Individuals in refuges are only evacuated in a confirmed fire situation. If this need arises, evacuation takes place using an Evac Chair.

Details of the process in place and how to obtain the PEEP are available on the detailed Fire Safety pages.

All reasonably practicable measures will be employed to eliminate risks. Where this is not possible, precautions will be introduced to ensure the risk is adequately controlled.

Any control measure identified during the assessment will be communicated to all relevant persons through written safe systems of work and appropriate training.

The risk assessments will be updated annually, or more frequently if the task/environment changes; a significant proportion of new staff are introduced to the risks; or the needs of the staff change, e.g. young persons or staff with disabilities.

Where health surveillance is identified as a control measure, the Health, Safety & Wellbeing Service will be consulted for advice.

The process for undertaking risk assessments can be found in the Risk Assessment Code of Practice on the Safety Documents page.

Completed risk assessments and detailed systems of work can be found on the shared drive for the professional service.

Inhalation of asbestos fibres is know to cause serious respiratory diseases such as lung cancer and mesothelioma. Details of the location and condition of asbestos that is known to exist within the University is available from the University's Asbestos Register, which is held and maintained by the Head of Operations in Estates and Property Services.

All work likely to disturb asbestos containing materials will only be carried out by an approved licensed asbestos contractor and be supported by a full risk assessment and safety method statement.

Estates and Property Services operate an Asbestos Management Policy and Plan and all employees and contractors are required to comply with this policy at all times.

The policy and plan can be obtained from Estates and Property Services.

Where chemicals are used, a COSHH assessment is undertaken and a written safety system of work developed.

The process for undertaking the assessment differs depending on the environment. Standard use of chemicals in the workplace will be assessed using the Chemical Safety COP and assessment approach. Use of chemicals in laboratory environments requires an different approach and the assessment system is unique to science environments.If unsure which to use, the Health and Safety Coordinator will be consulted for further advice.

Details of recent changes to labelling and terminology in relation to chemical safety, made under the new Classification, Labelling and Packaging Regs, can be found on the Chemical Safety Page.

If personal protective equipment (ppe) is required to assist with controlling the risks, this is provided in accordance with the appropriate BSEN standard.

If health screening is identified in the assessment, the Occupational Health service are consulted for further advice.

The risks to children on campus may differ from those present for more experienced adults, owing to the child's lack of knowledge and experience. For this reason, the risks to children have to be specifically assessed. The Working with Young People Code of Practice details the requirements of the risk assessment in relation to children in the workplace.

In addition, many of our buildings may not be safe for younger children as they haven't been designed with their needs in mind. The Children on Campus Code of Practice details the occasions when it may or may not be appropriate for children to visit the University.

Contractors will be selected and managed in accordance with the Management of Contractors Code of Practice.

If contractors are used for work which might require alterations to, connection with, or interface with the fabric of the building or any services, such as water or electric, then this work will be managed through Estates and Property Services.Where others are required to provide services, such as consultants or trainers, there may be additional health and safety or insurance requirements, so the Health and Safety Coordinator will be consulted for advice.

Each person is required to complete a workstation assessment if they use display screen equipment for their work. This also applies to any employee working from home.

The individual should complete the online assessment and identify where any problems exist.Their line manager will assist with sourcing replacement furniture or equipment; Estates and Property Services will deal with problems relating to temperature, ventilation and lighting; and the Health, Safety and Wellbeing Service will assist where discomfort is being experienced associated with workstation use, or a medical issue is identified.

The assessment should be completed at least annually and if any changes to layout, equipment or health are experienced.

Complete your DSE Assessment

All staff who work with display screen equipment are entitled to an eyesight test, the cost of which will be reimbursed by Payroll.

Details of how to access an eyesight test and claim reimbursement can be found in the DSE Code of Practice.

All areas that use dangerous substances or substances which might create an explosive atmosphere, as defined by the Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations, are subjected to a specific risk assessment. 

The DSEAR Code of Practice details the assessment process and precautions to take.

Assistance in undertaking this assessment can be obtained by contacting your H&S Coordinator.

All events held on University premises or arranged by the University on others premises are planned in accordance with the Event Safety Code of Practice.

Where an external premise is used for an event, which is not being booked through the Conference Office and is not owned by the University, the University Fire Officer can provide further advice regarding the suitability of the premises.

All buildings are fire risk assessed by the Health, Safety and Wellbeing Service. This ensures that the physical safety measures to minimise the risks from fire are sufficient.Any modification or maintenance of the safety measures is undertaken by the Estates and Property Services.

Each building has a Building Controller who is responsible for developing and maintaining an evacuation plan and a team of wardens.

Details of the Building Controller and copies of the fire risk assessment and evacuation plan can be found on the Fire Safety page.

We maintain a safe workplace by ensuring that housekeeping is of a high standard, and regular inspections of the working environments are undertaken by line managers.

If used incorrectly or without the proper risk controls, some forms of artificial light can cause serious injuries, damage or fire.

The University recognises that the risks from using artificial light, in this case lasers, needs to be properly controlled. 

Each laser will be registered and under the control of a Designated Laser Officer. The Laser Code of Practice details the individual requirements and risk assessment process that will be followed in order to manage these risks.

The University recognises that failure to manage the risks from the proliferation of legionella bacteria in water systems could result in exposure to risk.

Therefore, we reduce this risk by identifying, controlling and managing the likelihood of legionella growth in accordance with the Approved Code of Practice L8.

Our responsibilities in respect of this and the practical ways in which we implement our risk controls can be found in our Legionella Policy and Legionella Procedures.

All staff required to work with lifting equipment or carry out lifting operations (as defined by the regulations), which might present a risk to their safety, are provided with the necessary training and safety equipment.

The lifting equipment and lifting operation will be subject to a detailed risk assessment and the necessary servicing and inspection to meet the requirements of the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations.

In addition, all lifting equipment is subject to statutory inspection by the Insurance Appointed Engineer, where required by the legislation. 

The local induction will include what equipment individuals may or may not use and what training is required.

The Lifting Equipment and Lifting Operations Code of Practice details the practical steps to be taken to enable the equipment to be used, serviced and maintained safely.

Lone working is common practice around the University and many people work alone. However, there may be situations where working alone presents a problem. This is primarily when the activities taking place are of high risk, or the environment is high risk. In these circumstances, lone working is only permitted following a thorough risk assessment that identifies suitable controls are in place and that the risk to the individual is low.

Further details about the University's approach to lone working and the two person rule can be found in the Lone Working COP.

All staff required to work with equipment or machinery, which might present a risk to their safety, are provided with the necessary training and safety equipment.

The equipment or machinery will be subject to a detailed risk assessment and the necessary servicing and inspection to meet the requirements of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations.

The local induction will include what equipment individuals may or may not use and what training is required.

The Machinery and Work Equipment Code of Practice details the practical steps to be taken to enable the machinery or equipment to be used, serviced and maintained safely. 

All manual handling activities are subjected to a detailed risk assessment, as outlined in the Manual Handling COP. Where manual handling tasks can't be eliminated, all the necessary action is taken to remove the risk. All employees required to move or handle loads are provided with moving and handling training by the Health and Safety Coordinator.

The University has detailed processes in place for supporting pregnant workers and students and returning new mothers.

If a member of staff notifies their line manager that they are pregnant, a pregnant workers risk assessment will be carried out in accordance with the Pregnant Workers Code of Practice and Risk Assessment.

Following maternity leave, if the new mother intends to breast feed her baby, a New Mothers Risk Assessment will be completed. 

Similarly, if a student notifies their Programme Leader that they are pregnant the Pregnancy and New Mothers at Study Risk Assessment forms will be completed as appropriate.

Activities that have the potential to cause stress are assessed in the same way other physical risks are assessed. The University has created an organisational assessment approach to managing the risks from work related stress. This has enabled a minimum set of management standards to be developed, which if implemented prevent workplace stress.

Support is available to staff through their line manager, Human Resources or via the Employee Assistance Programme.

Further details about the minimum management standards to be implemented can be found in the

Further details of the Employee Assistance Programme can be found via the link.

Employee Assistance Programme 

The professional services follow the requirements of the Travel and Fieldwork Policy and COP in relation to staff and student travel. In addition, the University has access to a specific resource, supplied by the Insurers UMAL, called Control Risks.This resource will be used to plan and prepare for any travel.

Details of the requirements of the policy, and the resource to with assist planning travel, can be found on the Travel Safety page.

Where employees use their own vehicles for work purposes, they are required hold a current, valid driving licence, business class insurance and an MOT certificate, if applicable.

If an employee claims for the journey they undertake they are required to sign confirmation of the above on the finance claims approval form. If no claim is intended, they are still required to be in possession of the required documentation. 

This information is included in the Management and Use of Vehicles policy.

Where employees are required to drive specialist vehicles, such as minibuses, mowing machines, etc. additional training is provided.

The risks from working at height are many and varied. The ensure the appropriate risk controls are implemented, a detailed Work at Height Policy specifies the responsibilites for managing the various aspects of work at height.

Each area conducting work at height has its own local safe systems of work for managing the risks, in accordance with this policy.

For information on how the risks of working with young people are managed, please see the safety arrangements for Children on Campus higher up this list.

A number of mechanisms exist within the University for monitoring and measuring our health and safety performance. 

Where data is available, we benchmark against other relevant sources of information.

In order to ensure the University Council, Vice Chancellor's Executive Team and the wider University community can be assured that health and safety is managed effectively, an annual and interim report are submitted through the Health and Safety Committee to VCET and Council at 6 month intervals.

The annual and interim reports contain information about the safety of the physical estate; the robustness of our health and safety management systems; accident data and statistics; and ill health data.

Recent reports can be viewed below.

Annual Report 

Each school and professional service is audited by an external auditor at intervals determined by their previous audit outcome.The expectation of the University is that each area will achieve an audit outcome of at least "good". Following this, they will be audited every 2 years. If a school or professional service fails to achieve an outcome of good they will be audited annually until they improve.

In addition, an improvement action will be submitted to Health, Safety and Wellbeing and their progress will be closely monitored against this.

The audit is conducted using the University Audit Template, which includes the criteria for determining the audit outcome.

Each work area is subject to a workplace inspection at a period determined by the risk level.The work area is inspected by the local manager or their representative. Results of the inspections can recorded on the Workplace Inspection Forms in the Guidance Document.

In addition, certain work areas are subject to inspection by the relevant enforcing authority, such as the Health and Safety Executive, Fire Service or Environment Agency.

Completion of the University Health and Safety Induction is mandatory for new starters and staff are allocated time to complete the online training.

Training will be identified as an outcome of Performance Development Reviews, risk assessments, service plans/annual objectives and at the request of the individual member of staff.

Training will be considered essential where the need is identified as a control measure in a risk assessment.

It is the University's policy to support all other training requests wherever possible.

The Health, Safety and Wellbeing Team offers a wide variety of training, much of which is arranged on demand.

To register your interest or discuss your needs, please email the Health, Safety and Wellbeing Helpdesk

The training we currently offer includes:

  • Risk Assessment
  • Manual Handling
  • IOSH Managing Safely
  • COSHH Assessment
  • Fire Safety

A number of mechanisms exist within the University for communicating and consulting with colleagues on significant health and safety matters.

One of the primary mechanisms is the Health and Safety Committee. A dedicated page gives details of the work of the Committee and access to the terms of reference, membership and most recent minutes.

In addition, various local committees, executives or meetings exist within the schools and professional services to enable local communication and consultation. Specific details for your area can be obtained from your Health and Safety Coordinator.