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Health and safety frequently asked questions

What is health and safety all about?

Preventing people from being harmed by taking the right precautions and providing a safe working environment.

Why are there health and safety laws?

As health and safety at work is so important, there are rules which require all of us not to put ourselves or others in danger. The law is also there to protect the public from workplace dangers.

Who do health and safety laws apply to?

They apply to all firms, however small, to employees and to the self-employed.

What do inspectors actually do?

They visit workplaces to check that people are sticking to the rules and to help them understand what is required to conform with the law. They enforce only when something is seriously wrong.

Do I need to have employers' liability (compulsory insurance)?

Yes, it's the law if you employ anyone and you should display the certificate.

Do I need to display any posters?

Yes. If you employ anyone you should display the health and safety law poster. Visit HSE Books to order a poster.

Where can I get further information about health and safety?

Visit HSE.GOV.UK or phone 0300 003 1747 (Health and Safety Executive advice line).