How often have you found yourself confused and overwhelmed by the masses of health and safety legislation your business and facilities must adhere to?
Property ownership and occupation comes with a wide variety of complex legislation that must be put in place and observed to keep your employees and clients safe. As the building landlord or tenant, you have a duty of care to ensure the building and workspace is in good working order, safe for use and compliant to all relevant health and safety requirements.
However, trying to understand property compliance and the intricacies of each law can be really confusing and easy to mismanage.
That’s why we’re breaking down everything you need to know about quality compliance maintenance in commercial buildings into a handy five-point compliance checklist.
All electrical installations need to be maintained to a safe condition and require routine inspections. Visual and physical testing, known as Electrical Installation Condition Reporting (EICR), must take place at least once every five year period.
Any portable electrical equipment (this covers the likes of kettles and computers, for example) must be tested regularly as per the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989 and ‘Code of Practice for In-Service Inspection and Testing of Electrical Equipment – 4th Edition’.
All water systems require a valid Legionella Risk Assessment. Legionellosis – a condition caused by legionella bacteria – affects the respiratory system. The bacteria spreads in man-made hot and cold water systems when the water is at the prime temperature for it to proliferate which is usually between 20 and 40℃.
Water temperatures need to be checked monthly and recorded so they can be monitored over time and improve the management of legionella risk.
Gas systems need to be checked at least once a year to ensure they are safe and therefore compliant with The Gas Safety Regulations 1998. Installation, servicing, inspection and certification must be carried out by Gas Safe Registered Engineers.
Gas boilers also need to be serviced to ensure it is running efficiently and safely. Faulty boilers resulted in 250 yearly hospitalisations between 2001 and 2010 due to non-fire related carbon monoxide poisoning. Regular servicing can help to avoid such problems and keep it running safely.
The property’s pipe work needs to be examined to determine gas pressure in a gas tightness test. This is a key check to ensure there aren’t any dangerous gas leaks in the system.
Inspections to AC units must be carried out by an approved inspector regularly. How often is determined by the size and number of units.
A well-maintained AC unit will see reduced energy bills and can even boost productivity of employees.
The ideal working temperature for an office environment is around 21℃ – too hot and employees can become dehydrated and exhausted while too cold can bring about flu and sore throats. A constant temperature can provide an optimal working environment and encourage a healthy workflow with happy and comfortable employees.
AC systems are also absolutely in ventilating workplaces and as such can help to stop the spread of Covid-19.
As a business owner, it is your responsibility to carry out fire risk assessments of your property. Appropriate fire-fighting equipment such as fire extinguishers must also be provided. Your business needs to designate a responsible person to carry out the assessment, as well as be responsible for implementing and maintaining a fire management plan.
Your fire extinguishers need to be properly inspected and maintained. A visual inspection by the business owner must be performed once a month and a professional should inspect the maintenance of the extinguisher annually. And finally, internal fire extinguisher maintenance inspections should be performed every five, six, or 12 years depending on the type of fire extinguisher.
As an employer you are required by law to protect your employees from harm in the workplace under the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations (1999). This includes identifying areas that could cause injury or illness, deciding how likely this is and taking action to eliminate the hazard or control the risk.
The most important thing you can do is manage and control the risks present in your workplace through regular risk assessments and appropriate equipment provision.
Remember, there are additional specific laws in place for higher-risk workplaces such as construction sites. You can find out more information specific to your industry here.
When a compliance check takes place, you can be assured that each aspect of your building is safe for use and is fully compliant to the law. By using compliance maintenance, such as our Compliance Services, you can make sure these requirements are met with ease and with minimal disruption to your operations.
Our Compliance Services are carefully designed to suit the business needs of our customers in accordance with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
We know everything there is to know about providing comprehensive services to ensure your property is as safe as possible and complies with every regulatory law it needs to.
As we’ve established, all businesses need to undertake inspections, assessments and follow a range of regulations to comply with the latest government legislation. Failure to comply with current building legislation is not only putting yourself, your employees and clients at risk but it can also result in penalties that range from large fines and can in some cases result in court proceedings.
We provide businesses with property compliance packages that test on various key items that include – but are not limited to – Emergency Lighting, Fire Alarm, PAT Testing, Earth Rod Inspections, Fire Extinguishers, Fixed Wire Inspections and Thermal Imaging Inspections.
Some of our services can even save you money on your insurance premiums such as our annual 20% tests and 100% visual inspections of your electrical installations. These tests ensure you are fully compliant and all of your electrical systems are safely working.
Our engineers can check your ventilation systems are in good working order and enable a healthy environment and ensure both your emergency lighting and everyday lighting are completely adequate. We also have qualified Fire Risk Assessors who can carry out Fire Risk Assessments on your premises.
We offer portable appliance testing reminders so you know exactly when your appliances need to be tested. This diminishes any interference to day-to-day operations and takes the pressure off remembering yourself.
At McLennan Group, we aim to make the management of building compliance as easy as possible for our customers. That’s why we offer completely tailored Compliance Services bespoke to your business’ specific needs.