Health and safety at work investigation
We investigate complaints relating to dangerous working practices or unsatisfactory conditions at work, workplace safety and the law.
If you are employee, your employer has a legal duty to protect your health, safety and welfare when you are at work. The rules apply to all businesses however small and whatever type of work done.
The law is also there to protect the public from dangers arising from the work. If you are concerned about any aspect of health and safety at work you should first always attempt to resolve the matter with the employer either directly or through your staff representative (if you have one).
Complaints about workplace safety
The Council's Health and Safety team deal with workplace safety in offices, shops, warehouses, places used for leisure activities and other non-industrial premises within the Borough. (The Health and Safety Executive deal with factories and other industrial operations).
Types of business regulated by the Health and Safety team include:
- Offices and shops
- Hotels and catering
- Consumer services
- Leisure and entertainment
- Residential accommodation
- Places of worship and undertakers
- Pre-school childcare
- Mobile vendors
- Animal care
- Therapeutic and beauty services
We investigate complaints relating to dangerous working practices or unsatisfactory conditions at work.
We also deal with enquiries and provide advice and assistance to employers, employees and members of the public in matters relating to workplace safety.
We will aim to respond within five working days.
The response we give will depend on the individual circumstances of each complaint, and may include:
- Advice to the complainant on what they can do
- A telephone call to the company to gain further information
- Requesting written information from the company
- A visit to the premises
We ask for as much information as possible e.g. times/dates, location of incident, witnesses, etc. Whilst we request that the person reporting the problem provide their contact details, we will not divulge these details to the company during the normal course of our investigation.
When we consider we have sufficient information from all relevant parties we will make an assessment as to the most appropriate course of action having regard to our enforcement policy.
Making a complaint
To make a complaint, contact the Health and Safety Team on 01708 434343.
Accidents and accident reporting
The types of incidents and accidents which need to be reported are defined in law. For further information please see the Health and Safety Executive - RIDDOR website.
Once we have been notified about an accident, we will make an assessment as to whether further investigation is appropriate. This will depend upon for example, the seriousness of the incident and how easily it could have been avoided. We may make contact with the injured person or visit the workplace. Where appropriate we may wish to take witness statements, view documents or take photographs.
The purpose of an accident investigation is to:
- Establish the cause
- Identify the steps an employer could be taking to minimise the possibility of reoccurrence