• Health & Safety

    Changing a Culture: Shifting Attitudes to Health and Safety in The Middle East

    We often wonder why we have such poor occupational health and safety standards in the Middle East compared to other areas of the world. But if you look around you, you’ll find the answer. Safety is no different to other facets of living in the Middle East – we suffer from a culture that has long been dependent on others to develop and implement systems and technology. Even the water we drink is imported! What appears to matter most to us is how easily we can purchase things that are ready-made, rather than go through the process of creating them ourselves. For example: We have budgets, but we mainly use…

  • Health & Safety

    The ART of Assessing Repetitive Tasks

    The HSE’s ART (Assessment of Repetitive Tasks of the upper limb) and MAC (Manual Handling Assessment Charts) are examples of ergonomic assessment tools, which form the basis of Diploma Unit B exam questions. The result is usually a cohort of panicked exam candidates! These tools look complicated at first sight, but like anything we do, the best way to learn what they are all about is to use them. Many of the tools are similar in approach, but this blog concentrates on the ART tool. The ART tool The purpose of the ART tool is to: Help risk assess repetitive tasks involving the upper limbs (arms and hands); and Assess…

  • HSE sign on green background
    NEBOSH & Assessments

    Finding Health and Safety Guidance and Trusted Information

    When I was studying for my NEBOSH Diploma and as a consultant, I always wanted to find additional information on various Health and Safety topics. However finding good, relevant, reliable and trusted information is not always easy, especially if you are new to the health and safety world. In this article I’m going to share some of the sources I use. It won’t be an exhaustive list, (there’s always more to discover yourself!), but hopefully you’ll find something useful. If you work in The UK, with the UK or if you intend to do so, your main source of guidance is the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) (1). Even if…

  • NEBOSH & Assessments

    Health and Safety Practitioner Skills

    In February 2001 Christopher Hooper, an independent Health and Safety Consultant, carried out a risk assessment for a client on a wood jig boring machine.  Two years later, an employee of his client injured their hand while operating the machine. And, after investigation, the HSE decided to prosecute Mr Hooper under S.36 of the Health & Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. The case took a while to come to court, but in 2004 the Magistrates’ Court was told that Mr Hooper’s risk assessment fell significantly short of the standards required and, in effect, contributed to the accident as it failed to identify the danger of the machine snatching at pieces…

  • NEBOSH & Assessments

    NEBOSH Diploma Syllabus Revision News #30

    Having finished looking at topics from the individual units and elements, we will now tackle the teaching and learning approach. There can be a perception that gaining the NEBOSH diploma is just a case of memorising a whole lot more facts to impress your friends, practising a few exam questions and performing well in the exams and assignment.  That’s inevitably part of it, but it’s a whole new way of thinking. A big step up to being an independent safety professional who can give sound, proportionate advice to a client or employer, and make a difference.  Of course, experience adds a great deal to this, but fundamentally it’s about approach…

  • NEBOSH & Assessments

    NEBOSH Diploma Syllabus Revision News #29

    We now come to the final element in Unit C.  This element was previously on the same topic – workplace transport and driving as part of work.  But we get a subtle change in that we are now calling the latter part managing work-related road risk.  Both parts of the C10 are greatly re-organised. Workplace transport risk assessment is now based explicitly around the UK HSG136 guidance.  It was in the list of references in the previous syllabus, but now the HSG136 structure has been brought into the syllabus organisation itself.  This turns what used to be a  random set of issues into a collection of issues framed around the site,…

  • NEBOSH & Assessments

    NEBOSH Diploma Syllabus Revision News #28

    Element C9 surrounds construction work and again, you’ll be glad to know that this also has changed little.  It turns out that construction work does not generally contain any specific hazards that haven’t already been covered elsewhere.  To some then, it may always seem an odd feature of qualifications like this that give it a special place in the syllabus.  But, context is everything.  The thing that makes construction sites so special is the constantly changing nature.   A hole opens up in the ground where there wasn’t one yesterday.  The bricks you were laying at ground level last week are today being laid one storey up.  And that’s not all,…

  • NEBOSH & Assessments

    NEBOSH Diploma Syllabus Revision News #27

    As I write this, RRC is just about to release their sample trainer packs.  These comprise samples of PowerPoints, textbooks, lesson plans and activities from selected elements.  You get a whole element in each case.  There are six in total – one element from each taught unit of each diploma qualification (national and international). The E-learning examples are not far behind. Now we come to element C8.  This takes a foray into the world of electricity.  Not much has changed in terms of content here – it still covers the hazards of electricity, electrical systems (installation, use), safe working in high voltage systems and, finally portable electrical equipment.  Of course…

  • NEBOSH & Assessments

    NEBOSH Diploma Syllabus Revision News #26

    Like C5 and C6, C7 is also about machinery and equipment.  But this time mobile, lifting and access equipment. When I was working for a large chemical company in a former life, I remember being amazed at the very high reach (compared to a standard fork lift truck) of the narrow aisle reach trucks we used.  The warehouse for our raw materials and finished products was “stack ‘em high”. So the racks were packed with pallets of chemicals that looked like a menacing post-apocalyptic scene.  The standard fork lift trucks we also used had all manner of attachments, cages and what not that meant they could be adapted to lift…