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Health & Safety Signs FAQ / Useful Links

In this section FAQ | Useful Guidebook | Risk Assesment | Safety Law | Useful Links

Ten questions and answers

What is health and safety all about?
Preventing people from being harmed by work or becoming ill by taking the right precautions - and providing a satisfactory working environment

Why are there health and safety laws?
Because health and safety at work is so important, there are rules which require all of us not to put ourselves or others in danger. The law is also there to protect the public from workplace dangers.

Do health and safety laws apply to me?
Yes. To all businesses, however small; also to the self- employed and to employees.

Who enforces health and safety law?
Inspectors from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) or your local authority. For example: HSE at factories, farms and building sites;local authorities in offices, shops, hotels and catering, and leisure activities

What do health and safety inspectors actually do?
They visit workplaces to check that people are sticking to the rules. They investigate some accidents and complaints but mainly they help you to understand what you need to do. They enforce only when something is seriously wrong.

Do I have to contact a health and safety inspector to get information?
No. HSE operates a confidential telephone information service called Infoline which is open Monday-Friday between 8 am and 6 pm. You can contact Infoline by telephone 08701 545500 or fax 02920 859260, or e-mail hseinformation Alternatively you can write to HSE Information Services, Caerphilly Business Park, Caerphilly CF83 3GG.

Do I need to register my business?
It's likely you will if you employ anyone - contact Infoline as above question.

Do I need to have employers' liability compulsory insurance?
It's the law if you employ anyone - and you should display the certificate. See the free leaflet, Employers' Liability Compulsory Insurance Act 1969. A guide for employers HSE40, available from HSE Books on 01787 881165 or from

Do I need to display any posters?
Yes, the health and safety law poster if you employ anyone. Alternatively you can provide your employees with individual copies of the same information in a leaflet.

Do I have to report injuries at work?
Yes, and other incidents. Go to our books section for more (health and safety accident report book)

Useful Guidebook

Download the full booklet - An Introduction to Health and Safety

Risk Assesment

Five Steps to Risk Assesment

1. Look for the hazards
2. Decide who might be harmed and how
3. Evaluate the risks and decide whether the existing precautions are adequate or whether more should be done
4. Record your findings
5. Review your assessment and revise if necessary

Download the full risk assesment booklet here

Health and Safety law - what you should know

Download the full leaflet here

Health and Safety links


Government Health and Safety Website

Excellent free leaflets on health and safety

COSHH Esentials

Health and Safety for Beginners (HSfB)
A useful site if you don't know where to find information on health and safety studies and UK legislation.

Health and Safety Executive small business toolbox

Construction companies - health and Safety Leaflet

Smoking Legislation

A Summary of Health and Safety Signs regulations

Health and safety regulations require that employers provide specific signage wherever a risk exists that one is unable to avoid or control by other means such as engineering controls. The sign must help to reduce that risk. If the risk is not significant, there is no need to display a sign.

Employers are also required to maintain the signs and ensure they are properly visible. They are also required to explain unfamiliar signs and what the procedure is.

Requirments for Health and Safety posters and accident Procedures

If you employ anyone, you must display a health and safety law poster. Additionally, you must report certain types of work related accidents. See our accident book.

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