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Assessment method – Written Questions Essay

Criteria 1.4: State why and when health and safety control equipment, identified by the principles of protection, should be used relating to types, purpose and limitations of each type, the work situation, occupational use and the general work environment, in relation to: – Collective protective measures

Fencing is used when access to the site needs to be prevented. They can be used to prevent access to the public and the workers making them use a designated entrance to site. This will make sure the members of the public cannot wander on to the site which could be dangerous for them or the workmen. Also making the workers go in through a designated entrance would allow everyone to be signed onto the site, so the foremen are aware of everyone who is on site. The main type of fencing is Harris fencing; this can be erected with ease and speed. It prevents access to the site but is only temporary and can be taken down as quickly as it can be put up. Harris fencing could also be blown over in a high wind. Harris fencing is not always necessary as existing fencing may already be in place. A garden fence, a garden wall or a hedgerow can be used to prevent access; they can be used on their own or in conjunction with fencing. Barriers are used to restrict access or to warn the workers of a danger.

These would be used throughout the job when appropriate. If there is a danger such as a trench that has been dug into the ground a barrier should be used to warn people that it is there and also to stop someone from falling down into the trench. Different types of barrier include plastic barriers and bunting which is help up using metal pegs these are usually bright orange. The purpose of barriers is to restrict access and warn of dangers. They are only temporary and can be easily removed. Cones and warning tape could also be used as a barrier to restrict access to a certain area of the site. These are only temporary and can be easily removed. Signage comes in different colours which denote what type of information the sign contains.

Signs can be used on fencing and barriers and can be in other areas of the site such as the site office. Blue signs contain mandatory information. These are things that everyone must do, they could be telling you what type of PPE you have to wear. Red signs are prohibition notices, telling you what you must not do such as smoke. Yellow and black signs contain warning information. The most common example of a warning sign is overhead cable signs. Green signs are Information signs which have information on things like first aid. These signs can be found in places like the site office or the site entrance. Also there is signage on packaging, these are COSHH signs and give information on how to handle that substance.

– Personal protective equipment (PPE)

Hard hat – A hard at is used when there is a danger of falling objects to protect the head from impact injuries or knocks. Some hard hats come with visors and ear defenders attached. The purpose of a hard had is to protect you from a head injury from objects falling from a scaffold, unprotect ends of a scaffold pole and other dangers. They must be warn when there is a scaffold on a site. Sometimes they can easily fall off your head but newer hard hats have a better fit. You can also get bump caps which are light weight hard hats.

Ear Defenders- Ear defenders are used when there is a loud noise on site which could damage your ears. A loud noise could come from many different things on site, it could be you cutting down a brick or a block with a grinder, it could come from someone else using a piece of machinery. You can get ear plugs which you put into your ear which reduce the sound, these can only be used once. If you reuse them you can risk an infection by getting dirt into your ear. You can also get ear defenders which go over your ears which muffle a lot of the sound out. These can be used multiple times but may also not be compatible with other PPE such as a hard hat, although you can get ear defenders that work very well with a hard hat.

Eye Protection – Is used when there is a risk of dust getting into someone’s eyes or an impact injury to the eye. There are different types of eye protection, safety goggles are made of a durable plastic and will stop both dust and flying debris from harming your eyes. Safety spectacles only protect your eyes from flying debris, these can be used when there is not a lot of dust for example cutting a brick with a bolster. Face masks are a rigid plastic visor that will protect your face from flying debris. They are commonly used with garden equipment like chainsaws and strimmer’s. They will not protect you from fine dust particles.

Gloves – Gloves are needed when there is a risk of damaging your hands or getting a chemical on them. Gloves differ in design, material and thickness. The correct glove should be chosen for the job after taking into account the possible risks. There are many different types of glove, from lighter material gloves which would be suitable if you are doing brickwork to heavier gloves that could be coated in different substances to give resistance to chemicals.

You must also think about if you are going to need gloves that will protect your hands from cuts if you are doing a job and you are handling something that is sharp. Gloves will only have a certain lifespan as they will degrade through ware and tare or through contact with a chemical substance. Gloves must fit the user well as not to hinder his ability to work well and also his dexterity which could make him more likely to drop something.

Safety boots- Most building sites will require you to always wear safety boots. Safety boots have a steel toe cap and a very tough sole. This will give the wearer protection from falling objects and also from standing on nails and other things. They also provide a sole with plenty of grip to help prevent slips. You can also get wellington boots that have steel toe caps which also keep your feet dry.

– Respiratory protective equipment (RPE)

Respiratory protective equipment is used to prevent a worker from breathing in dust or fumes that may be hazardous. There are various types but the most commonly used type of RPE is a dust mask. These are light weight and comfortable and easy to fit. However, they will not offer any protection from toxic dust or fumes. Most dust masks are only effective for a short period and then they need replacing. Respirators have removable filters, which can be replaced.

You can get different filters which do different jobs, some protect the user from toxic dust and some protect the user from fumes. Also you can get respirators which cover the whole face which provide more protection. If you are working in an area with low oxygen you should choose breathing apparatus with an air supply. You must ensure that the dust mask is correct for the job and provides the appropriate protection. You also must ensure that the mask is a good fit to the person who is wearing it. A poor fit will result in a poor seal allowing dust and fumes to get in.

– Local exhaust ventilation (LEV).

Exposure to dust and to fumes can be harmful to people’s health. It can cause asthma, lung scaring and cancer. Therefore local exhaust ventilation systems are put in place to extract the airborne dust and fumes. There are different types of LEV and care must be taken to choose the most effective type for a particular job or machine.

Most LEV systems simply suck the dust and fumes out of the air before they reach a worker. Some of them will also have a hood fitted which will help contain the dust and fumes as they are being sucked away. Water can stop dust from taking to the air in the first place, on some tools you can fit a water supply, such as a grinder where the blade is kept wet while you are cutting to keep the dust down. Sometimes just opening windows and doors will allow the dust to escape and clear the air. .

Criteria 1.5: State how the health and safety control equipment relevant to the work should be used in accordance with the given instructions.

Collective protective measures should be installed and used only by people who have received adequate information, instruction and training. This will help prevent something like a Harris fence from blowing down in a wind because it wasn’t properly secured. The signage would have to be put up correctly to avoid a mistake being made so this would have to be done by someone who knows all the correct information.

PPE should be in good condition and be well looked after by the user. The correct PPE should be chosen and correctly worn for each job, also you should ensure the PPE is compatible eg. Does the hard hat stop you from being able to wear your ear defenders? The PPE that is worn should be decided after thinking about the possible hazards.

RPE used should be suitable to the job at hand, the user needs to think about if they need protection from toxic dust, fumes or if there will be a short supply in oxygen. Choosing the right mask is the first step and making sure it is a correct fit is the second. Fit testing is the best way to make sure a mask fits you properly, this should be carried out by someone who is qualified. Facial hair could stop you being able to get a tight seal and causing contaminated air to seep in. You should regularly replace filters on your mask and always check the correct filter for the job is fitted. You should store your mask in a clean, dust free area.

LEV that is needed will vary depending on the task that you are doing. If you are sweeping a room indoors opening the doors and windows will allow most of the dust to escape. If you are using a grinder to cut a block or a piece of slate you could pour water on to it or add a water supply to keep the dust down. You could also do it outside. If you worked in joinery you could get a reputable LEV supplier to advise you on the best LEV system to ventilate your machines. Employees should be knowledgeable in how to use LEV.

Criteria 1.6: State which types of health, safety and welfare legislation, notices and warning signs are relevant to the occupational area and associated equipment.

The Health and safety Law poster should be posted up somewhere, this could be in the site office, with the name of the trained first aider on it. There will be signage in green which are information signs. Such as a first aid sign.

Blue signs tell people what they must do while on site. It could be information on what type of PPE must be worn.

Red signs are probation signs telling people things they must not do, this could be no smoking signs or a no entry except to authorised personal sign.

Yellow signs are warning signs. They warn people of dangers that they need to be aware off. This could be a sign warning you of overhead cables or a sign warning you that there is heavy plant machinery operating on site.

There will be signs on machinery and power tools saying what items of PPE need to be worn while operating them. Signs will be on the packaging of harmful substances stating what PPE should be worn and what precautions should take place when using them.

There will also be COSHH signs on the bottle or packaging of many different substances. These will tell the user what precautions they need to take while handling the substance or what they have to do if there is a chemical spill and how to neutralize it.

Criteria 1.7: State why health, safety and welfare legislation, notices and warning signs are relevant to the occupational area. They are there to protect the work force from hazards and the dangers by informing people that these hazards and dangers exist, keeping people safe. They are also relevant because the signs inform people of what safety measures they need to take eg. PPE. Health and safety procedures and locations of things like the first aid office are and also the name of the trained first aider on signs.

Criteria 1.8: State how to comply with control measures that have been identified by risk assessments and safe systems of work.

The information and control measures that have been identified by risk assessments will be made available to everyone to read. You can read the mission statement which is that plan of action or you could be told verbally. You must follow these orders and work in the way that is instructed. Also there is information on machinery and tools, which will instruct you on how to work in a safe manner. COSHH signs on substances must also be followed to work in a safe way.

Criteria 2.2: List typical hazards associated with the work environment and occupational area in relation to resources, substances, asbestos, equipment, obstructions, storage, services and work activities.

Resources can become a hazard if they are improperly stacked. Materials such as bricks and blocks must be stacked in a safe and stable way, eg. Not too high. Care must be taken when moving resources. MHO (manual handling operations) need to be implied properly to make sure all lifting is done safely.

Substances such as cement, lime and other chemicals and solvents can damage skin causing burns, dermatitis and other skin problems. Some chemicals and solvents could potentially present a fire risk so must be stored in a suitable way.

Asbestos is found in lots of older buildings. It is at its most dangerous when it is disturbed. The fibres are inhaled and can cause severe damage to the lungs and death. When discovered asbestos should only be removed by a licensed contractor.

Equipment can cause hazards if used improperly. Cutting tools and saws can be dangerous because you could cut of a finger or something worse. Some equipment can be loud enough to damage your ears. Some tools which produce a lot of vibration such as a breaker can cause white finger.

Obstructions are a hazard because people can trip over them, also if they are blocking a fire escape it could be dangerous.

If things are not stored correctly they could be unstable and fall over and hurt someone. Also certain materials must be stored under specific condition. Some materials present a fire risk.

Care must be taken not to damage any services. If you are digging and you hit a gas or electric main it could be potentially dangerous. They should have warning tape above them but this is not always the case. Also if you are improperly trained you could be electrocuted if you attempt electrical work.

Some work activities present a risk such as climbing ladders and work on a roof or scaffold. Also when machinery such as diggers are on site you must be careful.

Criteria 2.3: List the current Health and Safety Executive top ten safety risks.

Fall off ladder
Fall through roof
Lifting operations
Struck by plant
Overturning plant fall from scaffold
Fall through an internal void
Asphyxiation poisoning
Crushed by falling excavation
MEWP crushing entrapment

Criteria 2.4: List the current Health and Safety Executive top five health risks.

Exposure to asbestos
Exposure to silica
Manual handling
Exposure to excessive noise
Exposure to excessive vibration

Criteria 2.5: State how changing circumstances within the workplace could cause hazards.

If things change and not everyone is aware of these changes then people could get injured. For example if a hand rail is removed on a scaffold someone could fall off. A newly dug trench could become a hazard if someone who didn’t know it was there went near it then they could fall in, this could become more dangerous if metal pegs have been driven into the ground.

Criteria 2.6: State the methods used for reporting changed circumstances, hazards and incidents in the workplace.

Reporting change in circumstances and hazards can be done at a tool box talk, or you could bring them up as soon as they arise to the site manager and to the other workers. Incidents at work including injury and death should be reported. There are regulations in place (RIDDOR) making sure these things are reported. Accidents should be recorded in the accident book with information about the incident, where it took place and the date. If an accident causes someone to have an injury leaving them unable to work for more than three days they must inform the HSE.

Criteria 3.6: State the organisational policies and procedures for health, safety and welfare, in relation to:

– Dealing with accidents and emergencies associated with the work and environment The HSE try to reduce the number of accidents and emergencies that occur in the work place. They also tell people what types of injury should be reported and how to report them.

– Methods of receiving or sourcing information
The HSE has a website that is very informative for both employers and employees on many things such as a COSHH and MHO. You can also request advice from them. You could also read the Health And Safety At Work Act (HASAWA 1974).

– Reporting
The HSE has regulations set in place called the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR). These regs make sure that everything is properly reported.

– Stopping work
The HSE sends inspectors onto sites and he is able to make people stop work while something that could be a hazard is made safe again.

– Evacuation
The HSE can send inspector on site and if he is not happy with what he sees he is able to close down the site by providing a prohibition notice. He will tell them how to make the site safe and what needs to be done to get it up and running again safely.

– Fire risks and safe exit procedures
Employers must carry out a fire safety risk assessment and keep it up to date. They also need to ensure that adequate and appropriate fire safety measures are in place to minimise the risk of injury or loss of life in the event of a fire.

– Consultation and feedback.
Tool box talks are carried out so that people can give instructions to others and also for people to give feedback on possible hazards such as a scaffolding has being altered.

Criteria 3.7: State the appropriate types of fire extinguishers relevant to the work.

Water, Dry powder, Foam and CO2.

Criteria 3.8: State how and when the different types of fire extinguishers are used in accordance with legislation and official guidance.

Not all fire extinguishers are suitable for putting out all types of fire.
For example if you spray water on an electric fire it could make it a lot worse. Below is a list of what types of extinguisher is suitable for what type of fire.

Water – Paper , Wood, Textiles, Fabric
Dry powder – Paper, wood textiles and fabric. Flammable liquids. Flammable gases. Oils and fats. Electrical hazard. Foam

– Paper, wood textiles and fabric. Flammable gases. Oils and fats. CO2 – Flammable liquids. Flammable gases. Oils and fats. Electrical hazard.

You must make sure when using a CO2 extinguisher in a confined space that you have sufficient fresh air. You could use breathing apparatus to make sure you are safe.

Criteria 4.2: State how personal behaviour demonstrates responsibility for general workplace health, safety and welfare, in relation to:

– Recognising when to stop work in the face of serious and imminent danger to self and/or others How you behave when you or someone else is in danger is very important. If a scaffold has become unstable in a high wind then you should be responsible and safe by stopping work until the scaffolding is secure.

– Contributing to discussions and providing feedback
Contributing to discussions and providing feedback by pointing out hazards and potential risks will demonstrate you are able to spot risks and help make the workplace safe.

– Reporting changed circumstances and incidents in the workplace Reporting changed circumstances can prevent an accident from happening because someone wasn’t aware. Legislations are in place to ensure that incidents are reported to the HSE. Making sure these are done demonstrates responsibility.

– Complying with the environmental requirements of the workplace Making sure things such as streams aren’t polluted and making sure waste is correctly disposed of is very important.

Criteria 4.3: Give examples of how the behaviour and actions of individuals could affect others within the workplace.

Your behaviour could have negative effects on others. Working in an unsafe way may directly harm someone such as dropping a brick, or not putting barriers around a hole in the ground. You behaviour could also have a positive effect on your fellow workers for example you could discover a fire and help to ensure everyone is evacuated safely. Also your feedback at a toolbox talk could stop an accident from taking place.

Criteria 5.2: State how security arrangements are implemented in relation to:

The workplace: Is surrounded by fencing stopping anyone from wandering onto the site. There will also be lockable storage areas.

The general public: Will not be able to get access onto the site as it will be secured with fencing. Also there are signs put up to inform the public that they are not allowed to enter.

Site personnel:

Resources: Will be locked away in containers so they cannot be stolen.


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