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Here's where to start to get your SME compliant before your first DoL inspection

by , 30 April 2015
As an SME, you probably find the idea of health and safety overwhelming!

Accident rates in SMEs are twice that of larger businesses can't be leaving you feeling any better. Or that the cost of safety failure could shut you down completely!

I'm going to tell you where to start so you can be 100% sure your health and management system is compliant!

Read on for what you need to know to start your SME's health and safety management system...

**********Reader's choice**********

Do you have more than 20 employees?

Don't ignore this health and safety obligation or else!

The DoL will slap you with a R50 000 fine or 1 year in jail if you don't have a health and safety representative.

Here's how to avoid it…

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What you need to start the health and safety in your business


1. Health and Safety Representative
If you employ more than 20 people, you have to, by law, appoint a Health and Safety Representative. This person will manage all the day-to-day aspects of your employees' health and safety.

2. Training
You need to train your employees on your health and safety policies. You also need to incorporate safety training in the induction of new employees. A great tool to use is Induction Training 101.

3. Working environment
You need to include the following:
•    Building structural safety;
•    Warehouse safety;
•    Ventilation;
•    Lighting;
•    Housekeeping;
•    Noise management;
•    Extreme temperatures; and
•    Signs and markings.

4. Ergonomics
This refers to the design and structure of equipment and the factors to include are:
•    Heavy lifting;
•    Push and pull; and
•    Repetitive strain.

5. First Aid
Include in this:
•    First aid boxes;
•    Training the employees you have chosen to be first aiders; and
•    The keeping of medical records

Read on for 5 more basics you'll need to cover…

**********Reader's choice**********

Revealed: The one vital element MISSING FROM 88% of all first aid training!

Do your first aiders know what it is?

Click here to find out

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Consider these areas to help you start health and safety in your SME


6. Electrical safety
Implement a means to protect your business from electrical fires and your employees from electrical shocks.

7. Personal Protective equipment (PPE)
PPE is a very important aspect of health and safety. You need to consider:
•    Choosing the right PPE;
•    Training employees in choosing the right PPE; and
•    The process for maintaining and replacing PPE

8. Fire safety and emergency preparedness
To make sure your company is ready for any disaster, you must have this in place:
•    Emergency response plan;
•    Fire fighting equipment;
•    Alarm systems; and
•    Adequate aisles and exits.

9. Hygiene facilities
Often overlooked in terms of health and safety! Pay attention to these or the DoL could fine you on these bases alone:
•    Toilets and washing facilities; and
•    Provision of drinking water.

10. Health and Safety File (SHE File)
ALL your health and safety documents relating to everything we've mentioned needs to be in your SHE File. That way, when the DoL comes knocking, you have everything you need in one place! For the electronic solution to doing your SHE File in less than an hour, click here.


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