Dangerous Working Practices: What to Do

Your employer’s legal requirements

We know that sometimes accidents are unavoidable and do often happen in the workplace, but employers should still uphold efficient and safe working practices where they can.

Your employer is legally required to follow all health and safety regulations and ensure that you are fully trained when doing your job.

If your employer fails in their duty of care, then it can have a serious impact on your physical and mental health. Accidents in the workplace can cause serious injuries – or even death.

Last year saw 123 workers killed because of accidents in the workplace, so it is vital for employers to do what they can to keep you safe.

Know your rights around safety

You are protected under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, which is a piece of legislation that sets out what employers should do to make sure employees are safe at work.

The best thing you can do as an employee is to know your rights around safety. This is so you can make sure that your employer is sticking to the duty of care they have for you.

Your employer is required to:

  • Equip you with the correct tools and personal protective equipment (PPE) you need to do your job
  • Provide the necessary training to do your job as safely as possible
  • Undertake required risk assessments as frequently as possible

You won’t face any disciplinary action

If you feel your employer hasn’t upheld their duty of care and you feel that an accident may take place, then you can inform management as soon as possible.

You can also take the more drastic action of reporting your employer to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

Employers aren’t legally allowed to start disciplinary action against you or dismiss you for reporting or highlighting their failings in keeping you safe. And if they attempt to sack you or discipline you, they leave themselves open to legal action.

You could be able to claim unfair dismissal, which is something First4Lawyers can help with.

Safety regulations to protect yourself

Although your employer does have overall responsibility for all staff, you also have a responsibility to follow safety regulations to protect yourself and your colleagues.

This includes:

  • Following any training you have been given
  • Informing management or the HSE if regulations are not being followed
  • Sticking to health and safety regulations
  • Taking care of your health and your colleagues

Make sure to look out for any dangerous working practices you may see and report them straight away.

Common dangerous working practices

Some of the most common dangerous working practices you may see include:

  • Badly maintained equipment

If equipment isn’t maintained regularly then it could fail and cause injuries.

  • Ignoring safety signs

Safety signs are put in place to warn you of any dangers within the workplace, such as wet floors or electrocution risks.

If these aren’t put up or are ignored then slips, trips, or falls, causing broken bones or fatalities, could occur.

  • Improper workstation layout

When workstations are clear and laid out well then it can make your job easier and injury-free, but if left to become messy and equipment is misplaced then injury can occur.

  • Lack of PPE

Injuries and harm may be caused to you if PPE is not provided to protect you when doing a high-risk job.

  • Lack of training and supervision

All training should be provided when required and workers should be properly supervised.

  • Not using the correct equipment, tools, or machinery

Many tasks require the use of specific equipment, tools, or machinery so if it’s misused, it could cause injury.

  • Overtime

If you are overworked and suffering from fatigue, then mistakes and accidents are more likely to happen.

  • Poor lighting

Poor lighting can prevent you from seeing safety signs, trip hazards, or using equipment properly, which in turn can cause serious injuries or falls.

  • Too much work given to one person

Being given too much work to do can cause increased stress and cloud your decision-making, which can cause injuries.

  • Unqualified people operating dangerous tools

If you are using dangerous tools that you haven’t been trained to use, then you and your colleagues are at risk of injury.

What to do if you’ve been injured at work

If you have been injured at work because your employer has failed in their duty of care to protect you, then you are entitled to make a claim.

We have expert lawyers at First4Lawyers who have got years of experience in dealing with personal injury claims.

We are here to help when you need it most, so give us a call, begin your claim online, or request a call back.


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