Why mezzanine safety should always be your priority
Whilst mezzanine levels can offer a great addition to the floor space in your commercial building, failure to construct or use them safely could result in severe injury and even death. According to the HSE, falls from a height were the most common reason for fatal accidents in the workplace during 2018/2019. The total number of deaths was 40, increasing from the year before. With those working at height being at an increased level of risk, it’s imperative that your mezzanine levels are safely installed and maintained to protect your staff and visitors from falls. Mezzanine safety can be supported by a dynamic risk assessment.
Mezzanines are often used by businesses with a commercial workspace that would prefer to expand rather than relocate. These levels bring many benefits to companies and can often increase profits and staffing levels thanks to a considerable increase in square footage. Your mezzanine installation should always be safely installed by a team of qualified professionals and signed off by an approved inspector before being used.
A dynamic risk assessment should be part of your daily routine
Before we look at why you should be incorporating dynamic risk assessments surrounding your mezzanine floor, let’s look at the difference between risk assessments and dynamic risk assessments.
Risk assessment definition
According to the HSE, you have a legal duty to assess the risks to the health and safety of your employees and those not in your employment who are exposed while they are in your workplace. You should consult your employees and speak with your health and safety representatives. They know the risks involved with their roles and can scope for potentially dangerous shortcuts that should be avoided. Formal consultation is not needed before every task-specific assessment, but consultation should be a part of your general risk assessment process.
Dynamic risk assessment definition
A dynamic risk assessment differs from the above because it must continually observe and analyse risks and hazards in a changing or high-risk environment. This allows workers to identify new risks and remove them quickly. A staff member can undertake a dynamic risk assessment daily when starting a new task or during the task process.
A dynamic risk assessment of your mezzanine is imperative for the continued safety of your staff and any visitors. Depending on what you are using your level for, you may be managing heavy loads, moving products from the mezzanine to the ground floor or simply spending a lot of time up on the mezzanine floor carrying out daily tasks.
Your dynamic risk assessment should always follow your primary risk assessment. Risk assessments should be kept on file and updated regularly or when there are any changes or injuries to reduce further and prevent accidents. Dynamic risk assessments are often done immediately and in your mind to mentally calculate any risks and mitigate them. These should be based on thorough risk assessments previously completed.
What should be included in your dynamic risk assessment?
When carrying out a dynamic risk assessment of your mezzanine, there are five key things to consider:
Identify your hazards – is there anything that could cause an accident or injury?
Decide who might be harmed – do you have colleagues working below you, or is the risk just to yourself?
Evaluate your risks and take action – understand the risks involved in the task you need to carry out. Is there anything you need to change to eliminate the risks?
Record your findings – ensure you write down what you have found and what steps you took to prevent any accidents from occurring – this should complement your primary risk assessment.
Review your primary risk assessment – if you have found that changes need to be made to continue working safely, your primary risk assessment should be amended to reflect the changes.
Carrying out a dynamic risk assessment has many benefits, not only to staff members directly involved but to other colleagues, visitors and the business reputation. These risk assessments will help you take a proactive approach to safety in the workplace. They will allow your staff to feel more confident both in their environment and ability to assess situations.
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Mezz One, always have your mezzanine safety as a priority
The height and size of a mezzanine can make the difference in how safe it is. If a mezzanine is too large for the area, it can cause structural and safety issues. This can result in serious injuries if the floor or mezzanine collapses, so it’s essential to ensure you have your mezzanine safety addressed before getting started. It’s vital to have your mezzanine designed and installed by a professional, which will ensure your mezzanine meets the necessary safety standards.
At Mezz One, we take your mezzanine installation seriously. Your safety is our top priority, so when we first visit your site, we will carry out risk assessments that allow your mezzanine’s safe construction and installation. Our risk assessments are always presented to you along with other documentation you will need to use your mezzanine effectively after it’s been installed. If you are looking for a safe mezzanine installation in 2022, speak to the Mezz One team today.