Importance of Health & Safety Inspections

Health and Safety Inspections are carried on by organizations to ensure a safe working environment for its employees  by meeting the required standards. An inspection should be capable of identifying hazards and to introduce measures to improve the conditions. They can be formal, informal, recorded or unrecorded, but what is important is that they are carried out to a set standard at periodical intervals.

Inspections are important for a safe working environment. They are performed to assess if a company adheres to the set standards to protect its employees and workers from hazards.  They help you determine the flaws in the existing system and to find out the solutions for the same.  Some inspections are enforced by law like  annual inspection and safety check on gas boilers and a few others are done by the organizations themselves to ensure safety like a HR outsourcing.  Everyone who visits your workplace or is affected by your work activities could be at risk if you fail to identify an issue that could be hazardous.

General Health and Safety Legislation suggests organization to provide a safe place of work for its employees. They are liable to ensure safety in accessing the tools and equipment and a safe working environment. Some common inspection includes The Lifting Equipment and Lifting Operations Regulations (LOLER) and The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations (COSHH) both outline specific requirements for the inspection of plant and equipment.  The law suggest the time when the specific inspection has to be carried out by the organization.

External inspections are generally carried out by enforcement officers, insurers, consultants or by a specialist inspector or engineer or by internal sources like Employers, supervisors and employees, including trade union safety representatives. Different levels of management might look for different things during the inspection. Make sure you include the right people to ensure that appropriate expertise is available to offer advice and information on any issues that arise during the inspection. Inspections can be planned or carried out without warning to determine whether adequate standards are being maintained in the organization.  A checklist is carried by the person performing inspection.

There need to be a purpose for the inspection. Every organization needs to analyze what needs to be inspected, the person to carry out the inspection and the area of inspection.   A workplace is considered unsafe, if there are damage to floors and faulty or broken equipment. Unsafe acts could include failure to wear PPE or failure to work in accordance with safe procedures. The cycle of an inspection can be varied when there is improvement of perfection in the workplace. It is useful to read through previous inspection reports to see whether any issues have been identified in the past and check whether these have been fixed.

Role of HSE Service Companies

HSE services are carried on by office and field-based HSE staff to check if the workplace is  adhering to the clients’ and industry HSE standards. It usually includes field assessments, accident investigations, corrective action plans and regulatory compliance reviews in addition to job site staffing in a variety of positions and roles.

  • Job site HSE staffing
  • HSE field assessments
  • Corrective action plans
  • Accident investigation
  • Project HSE plans – development and implementation
  • Regulatory compliance reviews
  • Company-specific training
  • HSE meetings – preparation and leadership
  • Hazard identification (HAZIDS)
  • Post-job evaluation
  • Professional witness for legal matters
  • Spill and release contigency planning

The main reason for a HSE inspection is to ensure safe environment, determine the hazards in the workplace and the steps to improvise it. Inspection can be done in numerous ways. They can performed by just walking around the organization and making necessary changes immediately or by recording the faults and determining the course of action.