This month, with the Safety and Health Expo at the NEC looming, the emphasis for our Brady Experts is very  much on the issue of safety

Safety query or issue? Talk to us at the Safety and Health Expo  Safety is uppermost in my mind this month as preparations are finalised for the Safety and Health Expo at the NEC which this year takes place between May 14th and 16th. It’s always a very busy exhibition and an important one for us at Brady as it is an opportunity to show the UK market our wide safety portfolio which stretches from photoluminescent signage range, through electrical isolation kits, lockout tagout for every energy source, readymade legislation-compliant signs and of course a whole range of portable and benchtop printers capable of producing instant safety signage. What I also enjoy about this particular Expo is we share stand location with our sister company Scafftag, which gives us a great opportunity to collaborate and share our market expertise. Many people are surprised to learn that Scafftag is part of the Brady family but it is certainly a natural partner with its universally recognised and market leading equipment-status range, known and respected throughout industry. Come and say hello at stand l10

ISO 7010; is it law and will I be fined if my safety signage does not comply?

The reassuring answer is that, for now, you won’t be fined. ISO 7010 is a norm and not a law and support is still voluntary. However, the theory behind EN ISO 7010:2012 to give it its full title, is for Europe to support the worldwide unification of safety signage already endorsed by the U.N. The shift is towards unification in all visual signage – as already underway with the adoption of the GHS/CLP signage system. The aim of the United Nations is to eradicate any misunderstanding or misinterpretation of warning and safety information in a world where business is very much a global undertaking, with process, transportation and employees frequently crossing countries and continents.

I am manager of a small processing plant. Last month one of our workers was very lucky not to be seriously injured when attempting an impromptu machine repair. I am obviously concerned that we prevent a repeat of this. Where do I go next?

In the United States, lockout is the number one transgression across the whole of the manufacturing industry. A number of factors contribute toward this but there is obviously huge scope for prevention and a reduction in the figures. As you have discovered any incident can severely affect both productivity and staff morale. I am assuming you are totally familiar with your obligations under the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (1998) and so will explain where an efficient lockout/tagout programme can help achieve safety in the workplace.  Of particular importance to a LOTO programme is point 24 of the regulations – (1) Every employer shall ensure that work equipment incorporates any warnings or warning devices which are appropriate for reasons of health and safety. It makes sense that a highly efficient, well thought out and durable procedure can only add to your efficiency and safety regime.

Having well-written, readily available lockout procedures is a critical tool for preventing lockout accidents. Good procedures are necessary to prevent worker injury, avoid costly machine breakdown, and increase productivity through quicker completion of maintenance procedures. At Brady, we have recently launched a comprehensive Training DVD  to support best practice in this area and to add the education factor into our comprehensive lockout/tagout portfolio. Can I point you in the direction of our team, who will be happy to carry out a no-obligation site visit to better assess your needs and will be better placed to advise of the best way to proceed?

*The Brady team are happy to advise and assist with all aspects of identification, signage and lockout/ tagout systems for optimum safety but fulfilment of legal obligations remains with individual companys.