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What Equipment Should Your Employer Provide to Keep You Safe at Work?

Everybody has seen the moment Madonna was dragged backwards by a wayward cape and it got us thinking about appropriate work wear. If she had been wearing a quick release cape, would the incident ever have occurred?

Your employer is responsible for your safety at work and that includes any clothing or equipment you might need. This is above and beyond any uniform that has been supplied.

The most common Accidents at Work are caused by slips, trips and falls, often due to inappropriate footwear. In the catering business especially it is so important to have slip protection footwear due to spillages and slippery surfaces.

Sainsbury’s recently reviewed its footwear policy and realised that the heavy steel toecap footwear it had supplied was too cumbersome and was leading to more slips and trips in their stores. They recognised that it was important to most employees to wear non-slip shoes. Sainsbury’s has now changed the footwear they supply to their employees and reports so far show that there have been fewer accidents.

There are other clothing requirements you might need that your employer should provide. For example if you work with hot food or fryers you should have heat resistant clothing, gauntlets, aprons and overalls. And if you have to clean ovens and hotplates you should be supplied with facemasks and goggles to protect you against hot cleaning materials.

More hazardous environments need further protective clothing and your employer must provide this to keep you safe. In manufacturing, working with molten metals is probably one of the most dangerous jobs so the equipment you must use has to be up to scratch. Your employer must supply a protective suit, facemasks, safety helmets, gloves and goggles. Coveralls are generally a bad idea as metals can become trapped in pockets and they’re not quick to remove in an emergency.

If you think that the job you’re doing and the clothes that you’re wearing are incompatible don’t do the job. Stop and talk to your manager before you continue. Your safety is paramount and it is up to your employer to ensure you don’t come to any harm.

Maybe a quick release cape would have been a good idea for Madonna on stage? I don’t think the proper risk assessment was done on the luxurious Armani cape. Your work lanyard has to be quick release after all!

If you have been injured at work and it was due to not having the appropriate equipment, your employer may be liable. If you would like legal advice the Personal Injury Solicitors at Slater and Gordon Lawyers specialise in work accident compensation and most claims are dealt with on a No Win No Fee basis.

For a free consultation call freephone 0800 916 9046 or contact us online and we’ll be happy to assess how successful you work accident claim is likely to be.

Slater and Gordon are a leading personal injury law firm with offices in London, Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham, Sheffield, Milton Keynes, Bristol, Derby, Merseyside, Cambridge, Edinburgh, Cardiff, Halifax, Newcastle, Wakefield and meeting rooms in Bramhall, Cheshire and in Hull, Yorkshire.


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