Health Safety at Work Act 1974 Key Points

    13July 2017


    The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 is an Act of Parliament with so many regulations that nobody or no business could possibly be aware everything.

    However, for all businesses there are some Key Point that must be observed and adhered to

     Section 2. Duties of employers to employees.

    Person slipping on a staircaseTo ensure as far a reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare of all employees. In particular.
    Safe plant, equipment and systems of work.

    Safe use, handling, storage and transportation of substances and articles.

    Adequate provision of instruction, training and supervision for the task undertaken.

    A safe place of work including safe access and egress.

    A safe working environment with adequate welfare facilities.

    A written health and safety policy to include organisational arrangements where 5 or more employees are involved.

    The right to consult a safety rep and form a safety committee where a recognised trade union is involved or 2 or more people request it.

    Section 3. Duties of employers to others affected by their undertaking.

    The employer has a duty to safeguard others not in his employment that may Person tripping or stumbling at workbe affected by the works or undertaking.

    This might include members of the public, customers, visitors, contractors, patients, students etc.

    Section 4. Duties of Landlords, building owners and those in control of premises.

    Safe access and egress to the premises and safe and healthy plant and equipment that may be supplied or installed as part of the building such as gas boilers and air conditioning plant.

    Section 6. Duties of suppliers.

    Designers, suppliers, manufacturers and importers of any article or substance must ensure so far as is reasonably practicable that they are safe and without risk to health. This includes when they are in use, being maintained, transported, handled and stored.

    Section 7. Duties of employees.

    To take reasonable care of themselves and others who may be affected by their acts and ommissions.

    To cooperate with the employer and others to allow the fulfillment of their legal obligations.

    Section 8. Horseplay

    No person should remove or interfere with anything provided for the health, Image of a hand with a sharp object impaled through itwelfare and safety of all.

    Commonly known as the Horseplay Act

    Section 9. PPE.

    Employers to provide free of charge PPE relevant to the employees task or Image of a workplace inspectorwork role.

    Employees cannot be charged for PPE which they require to safely carry out their duties.

    Section 36. Offences due to the fault of another.

    Two people can be charged if an offence committed by one person was a result of an offence committed by a second person.

    Typically person 1 might be the employer and person 2 might be the supplier of faulty goods or equipment.

    Section 37. Personal liability of directors.

    Directors and senior managers cannot organise their business activities in Image of management sat around a meeting tablesuch a way as to make them look ignorant of any breaches of health and safety.

    Where there is an offence committed by the corporate body with the consent, connivance or neglect of a director or senior officer, then both the corporate body and senior officer can be prosecuted together.

    And last but not least

    Image of a female tanker driverWe all have a role to play in effective health and safety, and for those actively involved in promoting safe working practices it can be a rewarding, interesting and varied role.

    Please visit this site often where you will find a growing number of articles, resources, advice and opinion.

    Whether you are a seasoned health and safety professional, or just getting started, we value your opinions and input so please feel free to comment on any of the posts.

    Due to the ever-changing nature of regulations and the law, please visit for the very latest information and updates.

    The Health and Safety at Work Act After 40 Years.

    Has it stood the test of time?




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