Forthcoming changes to Health and Safety at Work legislation

On 1st October 2013 regulations relating to the reporting of accidents and injuries and first aid training requirements will be amended. In both cases the changes reflect recommendations in the reviews of health and safety legislation led by Lord Young and Professor Löfstedt and support the government’s policy of removing regulatory burdens and simplifying the legal framework whilst maintaining standards.

Reporting of injuries resulting from an accident at work

In the case of accidents and injuries the revised duties are set out in the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013. The revised regulations simplify the reporting requirements by:

  • Simplifying and narrowing the definition of ‘major injuries’ to workers;
  • Reducing the number of reportable industrial diseases from 47 to eight categories of work-related illness;
  • Restricting the types of ‘dangerous occurrence’ that have to be reported.

Employers should note that there are no changes to the reporting requirements for:

  • Fatal accidents;
  • Accidents to non-workers (members of the public);
  • Accidents which result in the incapacitation of a worker for more than seven days.

First Aid Training

The Health and Safety (First Aid) Regulations 1981 currently require HSE approval of all first aid training courses and qualifications.  From 1 October this specific requirement will be repealed.

Employers will be free to select a health and safety training provider and course that is best suited to meet the needs of their business. By the same token training providers will be able to tailor training to meet the needs of individual businesses; training for first aiders in the commercial sector will no longer have to be the same as for those working in manufacturing industries.

These changes will not affect other existing requirements including the need to assess first aid requirements, to manage the provision of first aid arrangements or the content of first aid boxes. Employers will only notice the difference when it comes to arranging the training of new first aiders or the refresher training of those whose training certificates have expired.

Guidance

The changes to both sets of regulations will shortly be reflected in the guidance available to clients using Peninsula’s BusinessSafe system. Revised Guidance Notes will be available in our on-line systems.