When you hire an item of plant or equipment you are often given a short introductory training course. The aim of the short session is to give rudimentary advice about the operation of the equipment and its key features but are you then competent to operate this machine?
Familiarisation training is meant to be just that. If you already have a licence for the operation of an item of plant machinery (lift truck, elevating work platform, excavator) or an item of machinery (chainsaw, drilling rig, stump grinder) then this training will show you the specifics of that machine. It is not a replacement for what could be a 1, 2 or perhaps 5 day training course.
5 days, that’s a lot of time!
Don’t worry. Unless you haven’t operated the equipment before a full training course may be just a day. The durations refer to complete novices and almost all of the plant and equipment courses which we provide can also be offered as experienced worker assessments where you skip the training and go straight to a practical and theory test. If you are taking this route you should either be replacing an expired licence or be very experienced with the equipment. I you’re not sure the assessment would be the right route simply think of your car test, could you pass again or would you have bad habits which could cause a fail?
In any case, the best thing to do is to speak to one of our experienced course coordinators, they’ll be able to guide you through the process and offer you the best value option for your specific circumstances, just call 01453 826781 or visit www.gettrained.co.uk
Some confusion exists over this issue but the realities are clearly explained in regulation. In fact, the regulations specify areas where cover may not be refused, for example;
- “any breach of the insurance policy by the employer following the event giving rise to a claim, e.g. failure of, or delay in, notification
- any breach of any enactment by the employer concerning the protection of their employees; or
- failure by the employer to keep records as required by the policy or to provide information from such records for the insurer.
- any lack of reasonable care by the employer to protect employees against the risk of bodily injury or disease”
Other than in extreme cases claims cannot be refused but restrictions can be made, particularly in respect of work which the insurer considers hazardous. The majority of insurers limit the height at which employees may work (still the single biggest cause of workplace deaths) and most also include a standard restriction relating to work with asbestos containing materials (ACM’s). These restrictions can be removed but you will find yourself paying much higher premiums for this privilege.
Restrictions are the key issue here. If you decide to work at height on a project and a restriction exists which you then break it is highly unlikely that the insurer will still have to honour the claim. Make sure you know these restrictions and make sure that your staff and managers know. A one off job or even a favour for a good client could leave you with a very significant bill if restrictions are breached and an accident occurs.
EL cover for micro businesses
If you employ just one person within the business then since February 28th 2005 EL cover has no longer been compulsory. However, consider the following scenario’s in which cover would be needed before cancelling any existing arrangement;
- You hire a part time member of staff to ease your workload over a busy period;
- You employ a temp to cover you for a holiday or period of sickness absence;
- You get help from volunteer works or work experience students;
- You employ a gardener, cleaner or security guard through the business;
- You employ an agency worker.
Finally always consult with your broker before making any change, failure to meet legal requirements on EL insurance can result in a fine of £2500 per day, over a year this could add up to over £900,000.
If you’ve got questions or need support on safety in the industrial, contracting or construction sectors please contact us for sensible and proportionate advice on 01453 800100
Security giant sends its drivers to C&G
G4S, the £5.9 billion international security group, has contracted C&G Services to deliver training to its drivers. G4S, a major provider of risk management and protection to governments and businesses around the world with operations in 110 countries, has brought us in to provide training over the next five years to enable its drivers to acquire certificates under the new Driver CPC scheme (Certificate of Professional Competence). We won Government approval in the summer to provide training under the new scheme, introduced to raise UK driving standards.
Half a square kilometre of plasterboard
Paul Brooks (C&G Safety Consultant / CDM Coordinator) will be spending a great deal of time in hospital over the next few years – he will be responsible for making sure safe construction procedures are used at a new £690m ‘superhospital’ in Birmingham. We’ve been brought in by project sub-contractor B R Hodgson to conduct monthly safety audits to monitor the installation of a total of 123,000 sheets of plasterboard, covering 445,000 square metres – nearly half a square kilometre – over the next couple of years. The Birmingham New Hospitals Project will create a new 1200-bed hospital for south Birmingham, along with new psychiatric and mental health units.
“All that plasterboard raises a number of safety issues” says Paul Brooks. “We’re carrying out a full site safety audit to ensure safe access and exit and check for manual handling risks. The sheets measure 8ft x 4ft and are awkward to carry, so we need to make sure operatives use correct lifting procedures.”
Nationwide site safety project
Building management specialist Building Automation Solutions has contracted C&G to carry out site safety audits at eight sites across the UK. BAS installs and maintains systems to control and monitor services such as heating, security, ventilation and access. The sites we have been initially asked to look at include two London hospitals, the BBC TV studios in Manchester and premises in Glasgow, Gateshead and Leeds.
“We’ve been asked to carry out risk assessments and prepare the necessary safety policies for all these locations” says C&G Safety & Environmental Managing Director Roger Hart. “We’re also looking at other BAS sites around the UK with a view to doing the same work in other locations.”
The initial phase of the project, valued at around £30,000 a year, is to be completed by the end of 2010.
Excavation courses for Severn Trent staff
We’ve been asked by Severn Trent Water to provide training in deep excavation and trench support techniques to around 300 of their staff across several regions. The training will be mainly for distribution staff and supervisors.
We often get clients asking for advice when its comes to electrical testing.
From PAT (portable appliance tests) through to building supply inspections it seems that the waters are rather murky and many business people are frustrated by a lack of clear guidance on what they must do rather than what they could do.
This is complicated by a range of suppliers who all provide information in a way which makes you suspect that their intentions are more commercial than educational…
So what are the facts in a nutshell?
You should have a scheme of inspection (could be visual) by a person competent to spot the risk issues (not necessarily an electrical engineer). However, you’ll find that pretty much everyone interprets this as having a company carry out portable appliance tests once a year for portable equipment (less often for fixed equipment like photocopiers and more often for equipment in tough environments like workshops or construction).
It is your choice to do otherwise but we’d recommend the above, if you wish to do it in house companies such as ourselves can offer one day training courses to give sufficient competence to operate a tester and carry this task out.
Typically your insurer will ask to see evidence of inspection and test on a five yearly basis. If you have recently moved into your offices you should be in receipt of a handover certificate which states that the installation was carried out in line with the requirements of the current IEE Regulations (17th Edition) and all is well. Once you get five years beyond this its time to review and you’ll need to get hold of a competent contractor to do this for you (NICEIC for example).
Remember, there can be a lot of power moving through the system hidden behind walls and in risers cupboards, poor connections can be overheating or perhaps sparking leading to fire and major problems. Perhaps have a shop around, a larger contractor with heat sensing camera equipment might actually work out to be better value than having to shut down sections whilst the survey is completed.
In summary, none of this is law but it is alluded to in the regulations as being reasonable. The fact that just about everyone else is doing it makes complying your best option in this case.
Finally, if you have questions then post a comment, I’ve tried to summarise as best I can, but questions relating to specifc situations will always arise.
Electrical Safety Training
BS7671:2008 IEE WIRING REGULATIONS 17TH EDITION 3 DAY NOVICE COURSE
WHO SHOULD ATTEND?
This course covers the full 17th Edition Regulations and is open to all. The 3 Day Novice Course is suitable for those who are qualified or want more in-depth knowledge, OR anyone who does NOT hold any of the acceptable
prerequisite qualifications applicable to the 2 Day Refresher Course.
AIMS: To inform candidates of the changes brought about by the introduction of 17th Edition
- Harmonisation with European Standards
- Part 1: Scope, object and fundamental principles
- Part 2: Definitions and Terminology
- Part 3: Assessment of general characteristics
- Part 4: Protection of safety
- Part 5: Selection and erection of equipment
- Part 6: Inspection and testing
- Part 7: Special locations
Please note the 17th Edition IEE Regulations will be referred to during the course, a copy should be made available for candidates use. These are available at £ 65.00 each
COST: £ 125.00 + VAT per candidate per day plus City and Guilds examination fee of £ 45.00 + VAT
Acceptable Prerequisite Qualifications
Applicable to the 2 Day Refresher Course are:
– City & Guilds Level 3 certificate in the re-quirements for electrical installations BS7671: June 2001 (2381)
– City & Guilds Level 3 certificate in electro technical technology installation (buildings & structures 2330-07)
– City & Guilds Level 3 certificate in electro technical technology electrical maintenance (233008)
– City & Guilds Level 3 certificate in electrical installation part two (2360