Health and safety in the workplace – avoiding chemical accidents

Given the number of health and safety regulations and pieces of legislation designed to protect UK workers from chemical injuries, work accidents involving chemicals really should not occur. If they do occur, there is a good chance that it was because laws or regulations were broken. There are numerous guidelines regarding the transfer, storage and handling of dangerous chemicals because of the enormous harm they can cause employees. If employers comply with the relevant rules and regulations they can be confident that they have done everything within their power to prevent injury to their employees, but if they fail to do so, they may find themselves subject to compensation claims.

Employers have a legal duty of care to protect the health, safety and welfare of their employers (within reason) and failure to do can provide grounds for an accident compensation claim should an employee suffer a chemical (or any other) injury. In order to claim compensation, the employee will need to claim that their employee had a duty of care towards them, that that duty was breached and that the cause of their injuries was that breach of duty.

Employers can protect themselves by being vigilant in their enforcement of health and safety protocols. The following must be considered:

• How dangerous is a particular hazard in terms of its potential seriousness and harm?

• Is the hazard likely or unlikely to prove a problem?

• For what length of time are workers likely to be in contact with the hazard?

• What number of workers will the hazard affect?

The appropriate course of action can then be decided upon:

• Eradication of the hazard

• Use of a less dangerous method in place of the hazard

• Movement of the hazard away from employees

• Use of tools or other instruments to counteract the hazard

• Distribution of protective equipment to guard against the hazard

• Use of specialist training to help employees realise the risk of the hazard and avoid it

Contact us for advice about workplace chemical injury compensation claims

Wherever you live in the UK, if you need advice about claiming compensation for a workplace chemical accident,  our specialist work accident solicitors can help.

• for FREE initial phone advice call 0808 901 9069 or

• reach us using the contact form below

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