Office refurbishment: Health and safety regulations

A well-lit workspace and adjustable bespoke office furniture meets workplace, health and safety regulations as well as boosts employee morale

Every employee and visitor to your business premises has the legal right to a safe, healthy environment. It’s so important that it’s even the law. The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974  (also referred to as HSWA, the HSW Act, the 1974 Act or HASAWA) is the primary piece of legislation covering occupational health and safety in Great Britain.

In addition, a workplace risk assessment is a legal requirement. The Government’s Health & Safety Executive recommends you carry out an assessment before you do work that presents a risk of injury or ill health – so ahead of a refurbishment is the optimum time as any areas lacking or deemed hazardous can be addressed during the refurbishment design and installation.

Here’s MPL’s quick guide to the health and safety regulations you should be aware of:

Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 – This requires employers to make provisions for:

  • Adequate lighting, heating, ventilation and workspace (and keep them in a clean condition).
  • Staff facilities, including toilets, washing facilities and refreshment areas.
  • Safe passageways to prevent slipping and tripping hazards.

The Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment) Regulations 1992  – This relates to computer use in the workplace and requires employers to provide adjustable office furniture, such as desks and chairs.

The Disability Discrimination Act 1995 – This requires employees, by law to, to make their workplace accessible to people with disabilities.

There are also a number of fire regulations to meet, as well as security, electrical and gas safety compliance aspects. It’s a lot to consider and it’s best to work through this process with a professional.

All of the above can be addressed during an office refurbishment and at MPL, we ensure health and safety is part and parcel of our office space planning, interior design and specification process.

If you’re not confident about health and safety matters, MPL Interiors can carry out a full workplace risk assessment for you to identify areas that need replacing, repairing or altering to make your place of work safe, healthy and legally compliant. Contact us today for advice.

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