I don’t know who the first aiders are, how do I get this information?
You can find the most recent list of first aiders here.
If you need a first aider urgently during working hours, pick up an internal phone and call 222; the operators will find the nearest one for you and send them to your location (out of normal working hours the 222 call will divert to the Emergency Services).
First Aid at Work certified persons will have attended a three-day, HSE approved training course with a two day refresher every three years. These people are the first point of call in an emergency situation and are required to respond, irrespective of their current activity (unless leaving the activity would be unacceptably dangerous).
Emergency First Aid at Work certified persons will have attended a one-day, HSE approved training course with a refresher every three years. These people are available to provide support to First Aid at Work first aiders and are trained in basic emergency first aid.
I’ve seen something H&S-related at work that I am very concerned about, who do I need to tell?
If your line manager can’t help, you can contact your Departmental Safety Officer, your Union Safety Representative or the University HS&E office. Contact details for all these people can be found in HS&E Contacts page.
I’ve had an accident, who do I have to tell?
1) Check for dangers to prevent further accident and ask for help if necessary
2) Ask someone to call for a first aider if necessary or for another relevant person relating to the incident (e.g. cleaner).
3) Advise your line manager
4) Fill out an incident report form as fully as possible and send it to your the Health and Safety Coordinator
Incident Forms: Incident reporting
I nearly had a nasty accident do I need to do anything?
Yes, please ensure the immediate danger is removed via the correct channels and fill in an incident form, near misses need to be investigated so we can make sure that they don’t lead to an accident in the future. Incident forms can be found via here: Incident reporting
There is a fire extinguisher outside my office but I don’t know how to use it.
We train all Fire Marshals to use fire extinguishers (provided to tackle small fires) and to manage the evacuation of buildings.
If you discover a fire but have not been trained to use an extinguisher, you should raise the alarm by breaking the glass in a call point and leave the building (following instructions given on the ‘Fire Action’ notices placed in all corridors).
Further fire information can be found here: Fire information
I’ve heard that there is a delayed response on the Fire alarm, what do I have to do now?
No, there is NOT a delay in the fire alarm sounding. You do EXACTLY what you did before:
When you hear the fire alarm, evacuate the building. Leave by the nearest safe available exit, do not stop to collect personal belongings.
So what has changed?
A 'fire alarm investigation' has been introduced.
It involves a small cohort of trained AU staff and the Fire and Rescue Service. Further information on Fire Alarm Investigation
I’ve been allocated a centrally timetabled room to teach in, it says it needs a PEEP, what is this?
Some of the rooms at the University have fire escape routes that need people to use stairs. If there is someone in the teaching group that has difficulty using stairs then they will need a PEEP, a Personal Emergency Evacuation Plan.
The PEEP will summarise how that person can evacuate from the building if there is a fire alarm. As everyone has different abilities the PEEP will be tailored to the individual. The HS&E office are responsible for coordinating PEEPs for staff and students.
I’ve heard that we can’t have a Departmental Christmas Tree - surely this is "Elf and Safety" gone mad?
Departmental Christmas trees haven’t been banned. However, we are asking that natural trees are not used due to their flammability and that some thought is given to their location. In recent years more and more Christmas trees have started to appear in entrance halls and corridors which are fire escape routes for staff and students, some of whom are working three or four floors above the entrance.
Please watch the short video from the link from here: Christmas tree fire (AU login required) Christmas tree fire (no AU login required) - then think if you would like this to be burning in your evacuation route...
General Safety at Work
I work at a computer all day and my back and arms are aching, can I do anything?
All staff and research postgraduates who need to use computers for their work should complete a VDU Workstation Checklist to ensure they are working correctly at their computer. This can be found here. Actions regarding the result of a DSE assessment and any further investigation can be found in document AU Standard Practice Instruction – Display Screen Equipment.
It is also suggested that staff and postgraduate students undertake the Dispkay Screen Equipment (DSE) eLearning module on the Health and Safety Essentials Course (log-in required and use of Blackboard).
I have heard that I can get a free eye test, is this true?
If you are using a computer and are classed as a Display Screen Equipment (DSE) User you can claim an amount towards an eye test and also an amount towards spectacles if you are prescribed them for DSE work.
To find out if you are classed as a DSE user check the AU Standard Practice Instruction – Display Screen Equipment.
The form you need to fill in to claim your eye test and contribution towards glasses is here: Eye test claim form
I have to pick up heavy boxes and I’m worried about my back, what can I do?
I’ve been told to prepare a risk assessment but I’ve no idea where to start.
If you are required to prepare risk assessments but are unsure of the procedure, training can be provided by the HS&E Department. In additon, it may be useful to look at the examples listed on the Risk Assessment pages of the HS&E website and closely follow the General Risk Assessment - Standard Practice.
It would also be useful to farmiliarise yourself with the summary document produced by the HSE: ‘INDG163 Five Steps to Risk Assessment’
One of my staff is pregnant, do I need to do anything?
Information and forms for the risk assessment review of expectant and new mothers can be found on the HS&E office website section on the Safety of New or Expectant Mothers.
I want to work out of hours in my Department, is there anything I should do?
Lone working should be avoided if at all possible, because of the increased risks it may pose. However, it is recognised that there may be situations where lone working cannot be avoided. The information on the Lone Workingon lone working is a starting point to help you (and your manager) put together a plan for lone working and there are a number of worked examples which will help you identify and manage risks.
I want to sell some cakes for charity. Can I do this or am I not allowed?
You can make cakes to sell occasionally for charity so long as the person preparing them follows Food Standards Agency advice. You should however make sure you avoid using risky food groups such as raw eggs and avoid cream/cheesecakes if you have nowhere to keep the cakes cool whilst you are selling.
You should also make a notice along the lines of “These items may contain eggs and nuts” for clear display on the table
Part of the FSA guidance:
Home-made cakes should be safe to eat, as long as the people who make them observe good food hygiene, and the cakes are stored and transported safely.
At home, people making cakes should follow these tips:
- Always wash your hands before preparing food.
- Make sure that surfaces, bowls, utensils, etc. are clean.
- Don't use raw eggs in anything that won't be thoroughly cooked, such as icing or mousse.
- Keep cheesecakes and any cakes or desserts containing cream or butter icing in the fridge.
- Store cakes in a clean, sealable container, away from raw foods, especially raw meat.
On the day, people bringing in cakes from home or running the stall should follow these tips:
- Transport cakes in a clean, sealable container.
- Avoid handling cakes – use tongs or a cake slice instead.
I want to hold a BBQ for staff, families and students as a university-related social event. What do I need to do?
As you will be cooking and supplying food you need to follow the food hygiene regulations. This includes ensuring that the food is kept under conditions that meet the Hazard Analysis of Critical Control Points (HACCP) - you may also have heard as this as Self-Assured Catering.
You need to do a Risk Assessment that covers food hygiene, fire precautions and any other significant hazards that your event may have. Suitable control measures will need to be documented and applied, including emergency arrangements.
The location of the BBQ will need to have the approval of the AU Campus Services Department (or Sports Centre if on their land).
If all this sounds like too much bother, you can always contact Hospitality Services and they may be able to take over the catering for you and make sure that your food is safe to eat. Alternatively, if you are a student association of the Guild, they will be able to give advice.
Food poisoning can be very dangerous. Please see these news items about E.coli infections caused by incorrect storing and cooking of food.