H&S Procedures – The Arrangements Section of a Health and Safety Management System

A Health and Safety Management System (HSMS) is crucial for any organisation’s smooth operation, ensuring the well-being of employees and those affected by its activities. The “Arrangements” section within an HSMS plays a pivotal role, detailing the procedures and systems for effectively managing health and safety risks at work.

This section must align with the organisation’s size and the hazards it faces. It includes procedures covering all aspects of risk management, such as hazard identification, specifying preventive measures, and assigning responsibilities. Regular reviews and consultations with employees, trade union safety representatives, safety committees, and stakeholders are crucial.

Furthermore, it addresses the safe management of equipment, from procurement to maintenance and defect reporting. It outlines procedures for handling substances, including hazardous ones, through purchasing, assessments, and employee communication.

Equipping employees with relevant health and safety information, job-specific training, and supervision is pivotal. This section encompasses the provision of such information, induction training, and training records. It also outlines accident and illness management, including health surveillance, record-keeping, and reporting under RIDDOR.

Proactively monitoring work conditions and accident investigations can prevent future incidents. Thus, this section covers periodic monitoring of work conditions, ensuring they adhere to health and safety standards. It also outlines emergency planning, including fire risk assessments, escape route checks, fire extinguisher inspections, alarms, and evacuation drills.

Regularly reviewing and updating the HSMS is essential to keep it current and effective. Various circumstances may prompt a review, such as changes in the organisation’s structure, new processes or technology, shifts in legislation or guidance, audit results, investigation findings, or third-party requests, like those from insurers. Periodic reviews ensure the HSMS remains up-to-date and effective in managing health and safety risks at work.

For reference, below is a diagrammatic representation of a potential HSMS based on ISO 45001.