Keeping Your Staff And Customers Safe
Health And Safety Responsibilities For Pub Landlords
Pub employers must deliver excellent health and safety training to safeguard the interests of both their own staff and their customers.
Being a pub landlord is a role that comes with tremendous accountability. Not only do you have the usual ongoing responsibility of looking after the health and safety of your own staff, but you must also take care of your customers. This can be particularly difficult in a pub environment where a large percentage of the people on your premises will be under the influence of alcohol.
Health And Safety Policy
Health and safety in your pub begins with the creation of a solid and clear safety policy. This is actually a legally required document if you have five or more employees working for you, either as full-time, part-time or casual staff.
The policy should offer a clear directive about the way in which your organisation approaches the management of health and safety. The document will usually be divided into three parts which should include: The Safety Policy Statement, Organisation for Safety and the Arrangements for Managing Safety.
Once the document has been created, it is essential that all staff, both existing and new, read through it and are able to understand its importance. Your pub team should be trained and then retrained at regular intervals. As an employer, your job is to monitor the effectiveness of the health and safety training to check that it works well in practice.
Unfortunately, accidents do occur in pubs and those who are injured are able to raise a claim. As James Braund, Solicitor with Trethowans LLP explains, “People are often mistaken in thinking that if they have been drinking and suffer an accident which is not their fault they cannot make a claim.” This is not the case and insurance bills are high for landlords as a result.
It is therefore imperative that employers take out a good level of pub insurance cover for their business and pay special attention to their health and safety procedures and training. By doing so, landlords will help to keep insurance premiums at a minimum and will protect the interests of their staff and customers.
It is also the responsibility of a pub landlord to conduct regular inspections of the business premises in order to anticipate accident or health issues before they occur. Recent research suggests that slips and trips are more than four times as likely to occur in the food and drink industry in comparison to other industries.
Exit and entrance routes to the pub must be adequately maintained so that customers or staff do not slip or trip onsite. This is particularly important if the floor has recently been mopped or if there are bad weather conditions outside. Weather-related slips are one of the biggest causes of accident claims in pubs and bars, but the simple installation of mats in doorways can minimise the amount of moisture that is brought into the bar area from outside.
Similarly, it is imperative that staff are trained to promptly deal with spilt liquids to reduce the chance of customers falling and injuring themselves.
Running a pub is one of the few businesses where you invite people onto your premises specifically to consume alcohol. This always means that there is higher than usual risk of a member of staff or customer suffering an injury. Be safe.