Lighting, noise, temperature and humidity are factors that contribute to a safe and healthy working environment. Your comfort can be reduced if one or more of these are not right and this can lead to ill health and a lower standard of safety. BT must provide a reasonable temperature in all buildings. What is reasonable will vary between individuals and will be affected by such considerations as the type of work being done, the time of year, background heating, air circulation and the type of clothing being worn.
Therefore please make sure that any problems in the workplace are reported to your line manager (such as excessive temperatures or poor lighting conditions). The manager has a duty to conduct a risk assessment and take steps to prevent the incident before a near miss or an accident occurs.
BT have stated that:
“It is however not acceptable to wait for accidents to occur before we take action and the primary focus of managing safety must be to prevent these incidents occurring. It is not acceptable to allow a known problem to cause an accident and we must be proactive in our approach using risk assessment and effective management to minimise the chance of failures occurring.”
All injuries however minor which are sustained as a result of a work activity should be reported to 0800 671345. (This could include electric shocks due to excessive sweating).
Also all incidents where no physical harm occurred but the circumstances could have resulted in injury should be reported as a near miss to 0800 671345 (This could include dizziness due to excessive temperatures).
Any investigation into either of the above should involve the relevant Union Safety Representative.
BT “investigate all potential and actual injury incidents because we value and respect our people and people in the community at large such that we do not want anyone hurt by our business activities. The only way to deliver on this aim is to understand as much as we possibly can how mistakes occur that lead to these incidents and undertake corrective action where we can.”
The main reason for investigation is to identify the reasons why the incident occurred and to learn how to prevent a recurrence.
If you are worried about any aspect of your health and safety, talk to your manager.
The TUC is warning that if employers fail to keep workplaces cool, they could be liable if a member of staff falls ill because of the heat or has an accident at work because they are feeling tired or faint. If the temperature gets too hot then the regulations say that employers must take action to reduce the heat by introducing air conditioning or distributing fans, providing plentiful amounts of cold drinking water, moving staff away from windows or allowing them to dress down.