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Written by
on 02 December 2016

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How to have an Elf and Safety Christmas!

Health and Safety at christmasGot your spare sleigh kitted out for winter weather and hi-vis Santa outfit at hand?

We’re getting ready for the festive season – and to help you out, here are some essential ‘elf and safety tips, inspired by some of our favourite Christmas tunes!

Decking the Halls?

If you’re planning to deck the halls with boughs of holly – then be sure to carry out a comprehensive risk assessment first.

It may be the season to be jolly – but there’s nothing worse than tripping over an unruly wreath – make sure there are no leafy hazards in essential pathways!

Got a donkey on the dusty roads?

If your Christmas plans entail loading up the customary “little donkey”, then do take a look at HSE’s advice on vehicle safety. Donkeys might not be the standard mode of transportation these days – but that’s no excuse for skimping on safety!

Be sure that your donkey has met with all the required inspections and maintenance standards, and take full safety precautions when operating. And remember to use the right sized donkey for the load.

Don’t forget to check out weather reports if you are planning to travel on any dusty roads – protective clothing may be required!

Working outdoors in an open sleigh?

Will you be dashing through the snow in a one horse open sleigh this winter? Remember to stay safe and warm when working outdoors, by wearing plenty of layers, as well as wind-resistant and waterproof clothing.

And if you’re operating any kind of machinery, do check that it’s been properly maintained, and is well lit. That means giving Rudolph an extra buff on the nose for maximum brightness!

Don’t get caught out by Christmas trees!

Working at height is one of the biggest causes of workplace injuries in the UK – if you plan on decorating an exceptionally tall Christmas tree this year, then have a look at the HSE’s toolbox with lots of useful advice.

Proper precautions should be taken before you start decorating – prevent falls by using the right kind of safety guards, and wearing appropriate personal protection.

Think about the potential risk of injury to passers by, from falling baubles and stars – make sure there’s enough protection in place!

Don’t spoil the Silent Night

The little town of Bethlehem is renowned for its silent nights – so employers need to take extra precautions when operating machinery and equipment, to avoid excessive noise.

Remember that the Noise Regulations are in place to make sure workers’ hearing is protected – hearing protection and protection zones must be provided, to prevent damage to their health!

Is it looking like a White Christmas?

Finally, before you start dreaming of a White Christmas, make sure you’re prepared to prevent any slips and trips in the icy weather conditions. Strong winds, rain, snow and ice can cause pose a risk to workers, so keep work ways and paths clear to avoid obstacles.

Make sure you carry out regular inspections to look out for potential hazards!

Do you have any questions about staying safe this Christmas? Give us a shout with any comments you have!

About 

David Cant is a Director at Veritas Consulting. The SME’s favourite go-to consultant for health and safety know-how. Bucket loads of experience. Fluent in practical advice. Solutionist with a brain you can pick. You can find him across social media on Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin.

David Cant is a Director at Veritas Consulting. The SME’s favourite go-to consultant for health and safety know-how. Bucket loads of experience. Fluent in practical advice. Solutionist with a brain you can pick. You can find him across social media on Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin.

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