Attire Accessories - Dec 2017/Jan 2018 (Issue 67)

40 ATTIRE TH March’s Managing Director Neil McFarlane offers advice to ensure that prices are the only thing your customers will see falling this festive season As insurance brokers, we’re often called upon to give advice on health and safety matters. Of course, every business is different but there are some general guidelines we can all follow to keep our customers and employees safe. In any setting, including retail or warehouse, objects falling from above can pose a serious danger, and you are at increased risk when merchandise is stored above you. Don’t think this applies to you? Consider the following incidents: • A warehouseman was paralysed after 180kgs of cardboard slid off a rack that was bumped by a lift truck. • A store customer fractured her pelvis in two places when she was struck by an unsecured countertop. Prevention pays. To prevent hazards from falling or flying objects, here are some practical steps that you can take to minimise risk. In the retail store: • Use caution when dealing with towering displays. At times customers may attempt to reach for items above their heads, and merchandise could fall and injure them. • Customers may also attempt to move ladders to climb and reach for products on high-rack shelving. Make sure that such equipment is labelled and that only trained employees use them. • Regularly scour the store for unsafe or precarious situations in which merchandise could fall, much like you do for spills on the floor. If you discover a potential falling merchandise hazard, make sure you fix or restack it immediately. • Children are especially at risk. Get involved as courteously as possible if you see a child that is unsupervised or misbehaving in a way that could be harmful, such as climbing on shelving or merchandise. In the warehouse: • When working at height, use signs and barricades to alert those on the ground level. • At ground level, pay attention to warning signs and do not stand in areas beneath where people are working at height. • Do not stand or walk under a forklift or any kind of moving load. • When working above, never set tools and materials on the edge of a fork lift, ladder or shelving. Unsecured items can easily fall. • When working at height, do not keep any objects in your pocket.They could slip out when you bend over and injure someone below. • Use extreme caution and follow all safety precautions when operating powered industrial trucks. Never exceed the lifting capacity. Falling objects do not just hurt people; they can hurt your business, too. How? Defending a legal action costs money and any negative publicity could harm your reputation and negatively impact sales. Decreased revenue for the company can lead to a loss in profit, salary freezes, or even redundancies. Stay alert to hazards because prevention really does pay. Christmas is coming Neil McFarlane, Managing Director of TH March & Co Limited Further information: TH March is a chartered firm of insurance brokers. Established in 1887, the company has offices in London, Birmingham, Manchester, Glasgow and Sevenoaks, as well as its National Administration Centre in Yelverton near Plymouth. To find out more, call +44 (0)1822 855 555 email , or visit the website