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FEATURE


DON’T SLIP UP ON SAFETY THIS WINTER


David Gajda, National Operations Director of ECO Integrated Property


Solutions (ECO IPS), offers maintenance advice on keeping safe, compliant and open for business throughout winter.


With colder weather upon us and the seemingly constant stream of extreme weather experienced across the globe over recent months, businesses should be preparing their properties for the winter months.


By creating a robust winter maintenance plan office managers can ensure they meet their Duty of Care, achieve compliance, manage risk, meet insurer’s expectations and allow business continuity.


By ignoring the relevant health and safety legislation, you are at greater risk of legal action. An ad hoc service approach is no longer adequate and increases the risk of lost revenue, damaged reputation, accident liability claims or shut-downs.


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DUTY OF CARE The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 talks about the duty of care but many managers do not realise this extends beyond staff to anyone visiting, or passing by the facility, including suppliers on company business and members of the public. All organisations must be able to demonstrate that they have done everything reasonably possible to meet their duty of care and that they have met all health and safety legislation.


MANAGING RISK Ideally, winter maintenance should be a year-round job. Late spring and early summer is the best time to review the winter maintenance plan and allocate budget to address jobs


such as the possibility of burst pipes, the weight of snow on roofs and the ingress of water.


HEATING SYSTEMS Issues with heating systems are likely to occur during the transition from autumn to winter when there is a surge from standby to maximum capacity which can result in breakdowns and service outages. Regular maintenance of HVAC systems should be carried out by qualified engineers to avoid catastrophic failures and down-time. It is a legal obligation for businesses to ensure that any heating appliance and installation pipework is maintained in a safe condition and boilers should also be inspected at least once a year.


www.tomorrowshs.com


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