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Health and Safety Top Tips. February 2011. Precautions and Figures. All stores should make sure that they prevent as many spills, leaks etc by good housekeeping and constant awareness of the danger. All stores should place a non-slip rubber mat underneath the sink in their canteen.

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Precautions and figures
Precautions and Figures

  • All stores should make sure that they prevent as many spills, leaks etc by good housekeeping and constant awareness of the danger.

  • All stores should place a non-slip rubber mat underneath the sink in their canteen.

  • All colleagues and managers should wear non slip shoes at all times while working. These should be checked by the store manager at least once a month.

  • Slips, trips and falls are serious

  • They account for 19% of all notified 4+day injuries (2009).

  • 25% of injured people were unable to work for over a month (2009).

  • They were the major cause (44%) of workplace accidents reviewed by the Personal Injuries Assessment Board (2009)

Fire and electricity
Fire and Electricity

  • All managers in the store should know where the switches for cutting off electrical supplies are.

  • RCD’s are Residual Current Devices and they protect against serious electrical shock. They should be tested twice a year (recommended to do this when the clocks change). You can test by simply pressing the “test” button – the switch should trip – if it doesn’t there is a fault and you need to get an electrician to look at it.

  • All Fuse Boards and the area around them should be kept free from rubbish and combustible materials.

  • Check that all plugs within the store are using the correct fuse – do not use a fuse with a higher amp.

Fire and electricity1
Fire and Electricity

  • Make sure that there are no damaged cables.

  • Keep around all sockets clean and tidy – especially under the tills and in the stockroom.

  • All Managers must know where all the exits and fire appliances are – they must also be able to give the Fire Brigade the location of the fuse board, how many people are on site and any other site specific information in the case of an emergency

Fire and electricity2
Fire and Electricity

  • Know the Fire Triangle – Oxygen, Fuel and Heat

  • Know what material can burn – cardboard, plastic, paper etc.

  • Know the ignition sources – electrical or equipment faults, heaters covered – laminators left on, rubbish left around electrical points

  • Know how to put the fire out

  • Know what extinguisher is for which type of fire.

Fire and electricity3
Fire and Electricity

  • Know what to do in the event of a fire starting – evacuation, fire exits (are they clear), calling the fire brigade (999 or 112).

  • Know your critical fire safety systems:

    Smoke and fire alarms – break glass units.

    Fire fighting equipment – which extinguisher is for which fire.

  • Know your evacuation strategy:

    Emergency plan and meeting point

    Emergency escape routes

    Train employees on evacuation

Stocking out safety precautions
Stocking Out – Safety precautions

  • Any Broken Pallets should be immediately put in the skip – do not leave them lying about. Any other pallets should be stored in neat stacks in a safe area, a safe distance away from any building.

  • Any plastic or cardboard waste should be place immediately into the balers – any bales should again be stored in a safe area, a safe distance away from any building.

  • The computer desk in the stockroom should always be kept clean and tidy – the only items around the desk should be the folders for delivery dockets, returns dockets and the fork lift checklist.

  • All knives or scissors should always be stored in a box in the stockroom. It is recommended that you have a set of 6 knives and 2 scissors and that this is checked at the end of each day. All boxes should be opened in the stockroom and that way knives cannot be left accidentally on the shop floor , where people could get hurt.

S h o e s

  • Key areas for slips, trips and falls include

  • Spills,

  • High-risk areas,

  • Over-used signs,

  • Environmental cleanliness

  • Shoes.

How to deal with a wet floor
How to deal with a Wet Floor

  • Wet floors are the cause of more accidents than anything else.

  • They can be caused by breakages, spillages, leaks or wet weather outside the shop.

  • Every colleague must be always on the look out for potential slip hazards.

  • When you find a spill or a leak – stand over it and get assistance.

How to deal with a wet floor1
How to deal with a Wet Floor

  • If possible dry up the spillage with paper towel – do not use a mop as this will spread the spill.

  • Make sure the area is completely dry before you leave it – do not just use wet floor signs (these should only be used at the front doors when the weather is wet) they are a warning not a prevention tool.

  • If there is a large spillage – you should cordon off the area with tape and wet floor signs and one person should use a mop and bucket to remove the liquid. The other person should advise customers to avoid the area.

How to deal with a wet floor2
How to deal with a Wet Floor

  • Warning signs do not physically keep people away from wet floors

  • Safety signs do not substitute for necessary protective measures

  • For programmed/routine floor cleaning, use a system that keeps pedestrians away from wet/ moist floors, e.g. physical barriers

  • Warning signs alone may not be adequate for many circumstances

  • Warning signs must be removed when they no longer apply

Yellow signs are generally ignored
Yellow Signs – are generally ignored

How to deal with a wet floor3
How to deal with a Wet Floor

  • When the weather is wet outside – it is very important to have wet floor signs at your entrances warning customers of the danger.

  • You must also constantly mop the area with a dry mop and if there is a colleague around the area they should advise all customers to be careful on the wet floor.

  • The area should remained cordoned off until it is completely dry and all cleaning apparatus have been removed.

How to deal with a wet floor4
How to deal with a Wet Floor

  • Leaks should be dealt with by cordoning off the area and placing a bucket directly under the leak.

  • Any over spill should be dried up.

  • Find out where the leak is coming from and assess whether you need to contact a plumber or the property company (if it is a roof leak).

  • Make sure the leak is not near any electrical items – if so these must be turned off at the mains and not turned on until the leak is fixed.

Shoes not allowed
Shoes – not allowed

  • Open-toed shoes

  • Sandals

  • Flip-flops

  • High heels

  • Smooth soles

  • Clogs with no ankle strap/ heel grip

  • Trainers


  • Cables and hoses

  • Identify trailing cables and hoses

  • Identify poorly sited electrical outlets

  • Site electrical outlets to avoid trailing cables

  • Use retractable reels and make sure they are fixed to the fixtures where possible.


  • Damaged flooring/ paving

  • Identify poorly maintained, damaged floors or paving (outside your store)

  • Repair and take steps to prevent future damage

  • The floor in your stockroom must be kept dry at all times

  • Any issues outside your store must be reported both to Head Office and the property management immediately.

  • The damaged area must be cordoned off so that no-one can walk in that area.


  • In the stockroom and on the shop floor the following if left untidy can cause a hazard

  • Pallet Wrap

  • Plastic Twine

  • Cardboard

  • Pallets

  • Shelves

  • Brackets

  • Hooks

  • When stocking out the rule should be – its either on the shelf or on the trolley.


  • In our stores these are some of the areas where falls can occur.

  • Stockroom – from the Fork Lift, from the up and over gate, from the railing section above the lifting area, from a delivery truck, from the pallet racking.

  • Shop Floor – from the ladders, from the order picker, by climbing on the shelving.


  • To prevent this type of accident it is vital that all stores follow and apply the following.

  • Fork Lift – no passengers allowed, no climbing on the fork lift, make sure all loads are balanced correctly on the forks

  • Up and Over Gate and Railings – no one is allowed inside the perimeter of the up and over gate when it is receiving goods, no one is too climb on the safety railings.


  • Pallet Racking and Shelving – for reaching stock at a height you should never climb on either of these – the ladders or the order picker should be used where necessary.

  • When using the ladders always make sure they are locked down and that you do not carry too heavy a load up and down. You must always have 3 points of contact with the ladder.

  • Delivery trucks – climb onto or jump down from a delivery truck – it is very easy to twist or break a ligament or a bone. Also do not use the fork lift to get up or down. Use a steps when you have to do this.

Stockroom cleanliness
Stockroom Cleanliness

  • The stockroom is an important part of the daily work in a store - it is vital that this area is kept clean and tidy at all times. The responsibility for this belongs to the management team and the person responsible for the stockroom. The colleagues that help in bringing stock in and out also must be made aware of their responsibilities in keeping the area safe and accident free.

Stockroom cleanliness1
Stockroom Cleanliness

  • A clean well organised stockroom makes it easier for everyone and also helps limit any stock loss or damages. This area should have the same priority as the shop floor – just because it is hidden from the customer doesn’t make it less important.

  • The stockroom floor should be kept free from any debris – pallet wrap, cardboard, pallets and plastic straps.

  • The floor should be swept when necessary and should always be swept before the stockroom person goes home.

Stockroom cleanliness2
Stockroom Cleanliness

  • The upstairs stockroom must also be kept clean and tidy.

  • Ladders should be in working order and should be used at all times when accessing high shelves.

  • Heavy and bulky items should be stored on the lower shelves. If necessary break down the boxes into the inner boxes to make them easier to handle.

  • Walk ways should be kept clear and all rubbish should be kept in a bin.

  • The returns room should be kept clean and tidy and all returns should be stored in a safe manner. Once they have been authorised for disposal – please make sure they are disposed immediately in a safe manner.

Fork lift
Fork Lift

  • Only authorised – trained personnel can use the Fork Lift

  • The fork lift is for lifting goods and recycling bales only – it is not for any other purpose.

  • No passengers are allowed at anytime.

  • Plan the use of the fork lift to minimise reversing especially within the stockroom

  • The forklift must operate in a clean and clear environment.

  • Make sure all warning signs are in place to warn people that the Fork Lift is in operation.

  • The unit must be kept clean at all times and the keys should not be left in or around the unit when it is not in use.

Order picker
Order Picker

  • The Order Picker is only to be used by colleagues trained by the Store Manager.

  • It must not be over loaded when in use. Boxes must only be one high on the tray regardless of size.

  • No Passengers are allowed.

  • The unit must only be used at “turtle speed” and the horn should be used to warn people of the unit. If possible a spotter should walk in front to make sure the area is safe.

  • Make sure the warning signs are in place.

  • The unit must be kept clean at all times and the keys should not be left in or around the unit when it is not in use.

  • Do not over stretch or lean out of the unit.