Chapter 17 OPERATOR INDUCTION & UPDATING
I spend many weeks per year carrying out Health &
Safety Audits round the country and it is obvious that there is a large amount
of ignorance, by all levels of staff, of the details of their employment and
also of the basic requirements of Health & Safety.
I am inevitably drawn to the conclusion that at the start of employment
and then annually thereafter it is essential to go over with staff a basic
update procedure. At the start of employment this is called Induction.
At the start of the 'Induction' I would advise that you go over with
them the fact that all employees are valuable and that their employer has
certain responsibilities both by law and by common decency. This, it should be
emphasised, also applies to them - they have a duty to comply with the
employers wishes as far as the job is concerned, and not to put themselves or
anyone else at risk.
EMPLOYMENT As required under the employment legislation you will,
of course, have given all your employees Written Particulars of Terms of
Employment. It is as well to go over the contract with them.
The information on their Contract of Employment should include:
- Name of employee
- Name, address & telephone of Employer
- Name of Immediate Supervisor
- specify when employment began
- specify date on which the employees period of continuous employment
- rate of pay
- rules as to hours of work including normal working hours
- entitlement to holidays, including public holidays and rates of
- rules on sickness or injury absence and sick pay
- details of pension
- length of notice the employee is entitled to receive and must
- employees job title
- any disciplinary rules
- itemised pay statements
- guarantee payments
- trade union matters
- maternity rights including right to return to work
- company policy to training
Also the particular arrangement at your workplace
- who hands in time sheet
- who they contact in case of absence
HEALTH & SAFETY
There are very many things now required under Health & Safety -
among them are the following:
- What do they do in the event of a fire?
- Do they know what to do in a fire drill?
- Where is the assembly point?
- Do they know how to , or indeed should they, use a Fire
- Should they fight a fire?
- Have they any responsibilities e.g. turning off of gas?
- Do they know what would be a problem for fire fighters? e.g.
pesticides or Butane gas cylinders?
- Where is the nearest first-aider?
- Where is first aid box
- What to do they do in the event of an accident ?
- How can they phone for help?
- Are there arrangements for lone workers - is there a Mobile phone
- To whom do they report an accident ?
- Where are the toilets?
- Where can they wash?
- Where do they have breaks - eat/ drink?
- Is their water available to drink?
- Is there a place to heat water for coffee or tea?
- Where can they smoke - & where can they not smoke?
- Is their a drying room for wet clothes?
- Where will they store Personal Protective Equipment ?
- Do they know the Hazards they will encounter in their workplace?
- Are they familiar with the Safe Working Practices for their
- What are the company's arrangements for controlling risks?
- Do they know what is expected of them?
- Have they seen your risk assessments?
- Do they know the equipment they are allowed to use?
- Do they know the equipment that only trained operators can use?
- Will they be given opportunities to attend training courses on
- Do they know about the Safe Working Practice for the equipment?
PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT
- What is available ?
- How do they look after it?
- Where do they store it?
- How often it is replaced?
- What hazardous substances are used?
- Will they come in contact with any of them?
- How do they avoid contamination?
- Do they know the Safe Working Practices for pesticides?
- Do they know what to do if they are contaminated?
- Do they understand the importance of clean water?
- Do the appreciate how little contamination is required to make the
- Do they know the different ways they can contaminate the
- Can they identify where the problems tasks are?
- Do they know about your Manual Handling Assessments?
STORAGE OF CHEMICALS
- Do they know who has access and why only these individuals?
- Do they know what to do if there is a problem?
- Do they know the hazards of fuel in handling and storage
- Have they read your Safe Working Practice for handling of petrol
It is as well at this stage to review all the Safe Working Practices
relevant to their workplace, give them copies and record that they have copies.
At this point try to tie the above into accidents which have happened to
your organisation (hopefully not!!!) in the past year, and other comparable
organisations. e.g. rolling of tractors down slopes, ride-on mowers flipping
into bunkers, etc.
Compliment them on absence if accidents if appropriate and finish with
getting feedback from them where they think the problems are for the next year
and how the problems of last year can be avoided.
Keep a note of all that has been discussed and be sure to have them
sign a register of attendance.
If you use the same format each year you will find that the operators
will answer the questions and they will also contribute during the course of
the meeting or at the end.
Please give them time to contribute - an operator who contributes and
feels his opinion is valued will 'feel ownership' of the company policy and
will be a better, safer worker!!!
All this is now essential both for Employment and Health & Safety
Legislation. Annual updates are essential - I suggest these are programmed for
March, just before the start of the season - perhaps linking it with a
demonstration of new equipment being purchased and how it works - your salesman
should be delighted to give them a little course on the new equipment.