Darker nights, adverse weather and Christmas is on its way

7 November, 2012
Pat Perry

Two weeks ago the clocks went back, we're experiencing colder weather and shelves in my local shops seem to be filled with Christmas gifts.

It won't be long before the menus are being passed around the office asking you to choose your food for the Christmas party ...if only health and safety issues were tackled with such Gusto...

So my suggestion would be to grasp the nettle and set about getting plans in place for Christmas trading. From our point of view, as health and safety consultants, Christmas means looking at operational detail and ensuring the safety of staff and customers during a period of increased production, traffic and hopefully, trade. So, what are some of the thoughts that should be occupying your mind when looking at Christmas trading and H&S, here's a few:

1. Staff Training. Now's a great time for refresher training. Remind staff of their responsibilities, to themselves, colleagues and customers.

2. Lifting - increased business is likely to mean an increase in the lifting of products, so cover the basics of materials handling.

3. Slips and trips - more stock, decorations, electric cables leading to tree lights, they all represent a risk.

4. More customers means that good crowd control becomes even more important - are fire exits clearly marked? Are all staff aware of evacuation procedures?

Adverse weather and darker nights during this period are also a huge factor that must be given due consideration. I'm talking about icy pavements / retail entrances, wet floors, snow brought in-store from boots, all present a danger and risk to employees and consumers.

These are just a few examples of issues you need to be thinking about, there are of course many more. In summary, take the opportunity now to look at the trading conditions you'll face in the festive period and don't be caught out!

For further information and advice Contact Us.

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