Jacob wrote in to find out how many first aiders must be appointed in a school.
Do you employ five or more employees?
If your company employs five or more employees, it must meet the minimum first aid requirements
Here's the answer from our Health and Safety expert...
The number of first-aiders for schools would be calculated on the requirement of shops and offices i.e. 1 first aider to every 100 employees.
Schools have many 'other people' on site apart from the teachers etc, i.e. learners, so make sure you take that into consideration. You also need to consider the hazards and risks to which the teachers and learners may be exposed to and make sure your first aid / emergency response can cope with any incidents, especially if you host sports events. So if you have 500 teachers and learners at the school, you'll need to have 5 trained first aiders.
The law gives you the absolute minimum requirement but it's up to you to manage the risk. If you believe that it's necessary to have more trained first-aiders after evaluating the risks, then that's what needs to be done.
If you host sports events, you must comply with the Safety at Sports and Recreation Events Act.
I know you're obliged to organise periodical training of employees, BUT
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Are you always aware of what you're legally required to include when it comes to training?
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6 steps your first aider must follow in an emergency
Your first aider must understand that there could be an emergency at any time and they must be prepared.
Here are six steps your first aiders must take when faced with an emergency:
When the emergency evacuation alarm is activated, the first aider/s on duty must collect the first aid kit and move to their designated assembly point.
The first aider must treat the injured and try to ensure the area remains untouched so that any evidence is undisturbed for investigation later.
The first aider must record the names and employee numbers of all injured persons. This information must be given to the Occupational Health Practitioner or the responsible Human Resources person.
If the patient is unconscious or if there's a possibility of the patient losing consciousness, they have to ensure a card with the person's name and employee number is attached to the person's clothing for easy identification. Don't leave any such person unattended.
Hand over the patient to the Emergency Services on arrival and give the necessary information to the Senior Paramedic regarding possible serious injury.
When the emergency is over the first aiders must return their first aid kits to the designated location.
But this isn't all. There's so much more to a first aider's responsibility in an emergency situation. The only way to ensure they know what to do in an emergency is to train them. Do this by using Chapter F02, First Aider Responsibility in your Health and Safety Training Manual.
You'll also be able to train your employees on the following:
• Emergency drills
• First aider responsibility (normal conditions)
• Legal requirements
• First aid kits
Don't have the Health and Safety Training
Manual? Then click here
for ready-to-use health and safety training modules that you can customise for your business in 30 minutes.
Until next time,
Managing Editor: Health and Safety Advisor