In light of the recent yellow weather warning issued for parts of the UK, the Met Office has warned of impending ice and snow hazards. With this imminent cold snap approaching, employers are urged to reevaluate their commitment to employee safety. The Health and Safety Executive, the regulatory body for workplaces, emphasizes the paramount importance of safeguarding employees as the cold spell looms.
John Rowe, Head of Operational Strategy, said: “We’re calling on all employers to take a sensible approach during the cold weather that is coming our way. There are lots of jobs that will be more difficult in the these conditions.”
The Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 place a legal obligation on employers to establish and maintain a reasonable temperature in the workplace, to ensure the health and safety of workers. The Approved Code of Practice suggests that a baseline minimum temperature of 16 degrees Celsius is recommended for standard working conditions. However, in scenarios where strenuous physical exertion is involved, the prescribed minimum temperature is at least 13 degrees Celsius.
Ensuring staff work in comfortable temperatures is crucial because individuals in cold environments are prone to unsafe behaviour, given the decline in their ability to make good decisions. This heightened risk can lead to an increased likelihood of accidents and injuries, underscoring the importance of maintaining optimal working conditions. By fostering optimal working conditions, employers not only meet regulatory standards but also actively contribute to creating a safe and secure work environment for their teams.
At Base Solutions we offer a range of online courses to make it quick and easy to keep up to date with your training needs. Our Workplace Health and Safety course is a useful way to help both employers and employees safe in the workplace during this winter season. For more information, do not hesitate to get in touch and one of the team who will be happy to help.