Health and Safety at Work - Regulation and Inspection (External)

Frequently Asked Questions for this Service

Question: I will be hiring agency workers, what do I need to consider?

Answer: If you hire agency workers, you must tell the employment business (agency) hiring them to you about risks to the worker’s health and safety and steps you have taken to control them; any necessary legal or professional qualifications or skills; and any necessary health surveillance. The employment business/agency should pass this information on to the worker in a way that he/she can clearly understand, and you must ensure the worker has received and understood it.

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Question: Who enforces health and safety law?

Answer: Inspectors from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) or Environmental Health . For example: HSE at factories, farms and building sites; Environmental Health in offices, shops, hotels and catering, and leisure activities.

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Question: Do I need to have employers' liability compulsory insurance?

Answer: Yes, it's the law if you employ anyone - and you should display the certificate in the workplace.

See the free leaflet Employers’ Liability Compulsory Insurance Act 1969 - A guide for employers HSE40
and Employers Liability (Compulsory Insurance) Act 1969 - a guide for employees and their representatives HSE 39. These are available from the related link - Related Link

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Question: How can I contact the Health and Safety Executive?

Answer: By Phone: Infoline on 0845 345 0055

By Post: Health & Safety Executive, Priestly House, Priestly Road, Basingstoke, Hants. - Related Link

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Question: What is a health and safety policy?

Answer: A health and safety policy means the health and safety arrangements i.e. the effective planning, organisation, control, monitoring and review of the preventative and protective measures. If there are 5 or more employees these arrangements must be recorded. If there are less than 5 employees the appropriate arrangements still need to be in place.

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Question: I run/own a business - do health and safety laws apply to me?

Answer: Yes - they apply to all businesses, however small. Also to the self-employed and to employees.

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Question: Do health and safety regulations apply to people who work from home?

Answer: Most of the Regulations made under the Health and Safety at Work Act apply to homeworkers as well as to employees working at an employer's workplace. Employers are required to do a risk assessment of the work activities carried outy by homeworkers. Further information can be obtained from the HSE (Health and Safety Executive) web site via the related link: - Related Link

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Question: Do I need to display safety signs in the workplace?

Answer: Wherever there is a risk that has not been avoided or controlled by other means (e.g. by engineering controls and safe systems of work), employers are required to provide specific safety signs. Where a safety sign would not help to reduce that risk, or where the risk is not significant, there is no need to provide a sign. Further information can be obtained from the HSE web site via the related link: - Related Link

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Question: Do I need to display any Health and Safety posters?

Answer: Yes, the health and safety law poster (ISBN 0 7176 2493 5) if you employ anyone. Alternatively you can provide your employees with individual copies of the same information in a leaflet called ‘Your Health and Safety - a guide for workers’. The poster and leaflet are available from HSE Books, PO Box 1999, Sudbury, Suffolk CO10 2WA. Tel: 01787 881165. - Related Link

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Question: Do I have to provide my employees with protective equipment?

Answer: Personal protective equipment is to be supplied and used at work wherever there are risks to health and safety that cannot be adequately controlled in other ways. Further information is provided by the Health and Safety Executive in their guidance document ‘Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) at Work'. This can be accessed by clicking on the link below. - Related Link

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Question: Do I need to register my business with the Council's Health and Safety Department?

Answer: If you don't have any employees, then you do not need to register your business. If you do, you will need to register either with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) or the Council’s Environmental Health Department - depending on the sort of business you have. For example: HSE for factories, farms and building sites; Environmental Health for offices, shops, hotels and catering, and leisure activities.

For more information please visit the Health and Safety Executive’s website by clicking on the link below.
- Related Link

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