Norwich Union, soon to be Aviva, is urging tradesmen to adopt best working practices to protect themselves, their customers and their business, as part of its 2009 Simply Safety campaign.
To ensure tradesmen use safe ways of working, Phil Grace, liability risk manager at Norwich Union highlights the importance of conducting a risk assessment – the cornerstone of managing risk in the workplace.
He says: “Tradesmen should conduct a risk assessment in the first instance, which will highlight any potential risks that need to be managed. This does not have to be an arduous task. It simply involves looking at what needs to be done and working out the safest way to complete the job.”
Grace advises that this approach will detect any risks and suggests that the most common dangers to tradesmen are electricity, chemicals, work at height and power tools.
“Work at height and power tools are perhaps the greatest risks to the self-employed tradesman. However, adopting safe methods of working will reduce the risk of injury,” says Grace.
“Tradesmen should also ensure that they are using the correct equipment for the job. For example, a stable and purpose-built means of access in preference to a makeshift approach, such as a chair or toolbox.
“When using hazardous substances such as solvents or adhesives, protective equipment should be used. It is also vital that tradesmen carry out their work with the correct training, so for example, those working on gas appliances should be CORGI registered.” effectively on a global scale for the benefit of customers, staff, business partners and shareholders.