Glass Partitioning Health & Safety
GDL Interiors Ltd takes its Health & Safety obligations to our clients very seriously, particularly with regard the installation of glass partitioning. All our work is carried out in accordance with Building Regulations BS 6262 Part 4, Safety & Human Impact, to prevent serious injury to persons through accidental collision with glazing at work.
Our entire workforce is fully aware of the legal requirements and our fitters are fully trained in the installation of glass partitioning. They are also aware that each and every one of them is responsible for making sure that their own work, so far as is reasonably practicable, is carried out without risk to themselves or others.
Before commencing any glass partitioning works we ensure that any procedures to be undertaken will conform to all current Health and Safety regulations and guidelines. We are all aware that any operation which involves working with glass partitioning, needs to be very carefully carried out. Glass partitioning has the potential to cause serious injury. If it is handled incorrectly it can inflict severe cuts and other serious injuries.
The workplace (Health, Safety & Welfare) Regulations of 1992 included specific requirements for glazing and these were backed up when they also implemented Regulation 14 which formed part of the EC Workplace Directive.
Regulation 14 requires that every window or any kind of other transparent surface contained within the workplace – whether it be a door, a glass partition, a gate etc. should either be made of safety materials, protected against the possibility of breakage or be clearly signed or marked to make it obvious to all employees and/or visitors. However, this directive only applies in cases where there may be a risk of people suffering an accident or injury by coming into direct contact with the glass or as a result of it breaking by some other means. Regulation 14 specifies that these additional precautions must be taken “where necessary for reasons of health & safety” therefore a full risk assessment is vital.
A full risk and method statement will be created by our Health & Safety Officer. This will describe in detail, what the works will entail and identify all the potential risks in advance. It will also detail the risk management procedures to be implemented. The issues of concern when it comes to a Risk Assessment being carried out are the location of the glazing, the amount of people plus any traffic that will be passing by in close proximity along with the type of activities which are to take place close to the glazing itself.
Doors and gates are particularly vulnerable where the surface which is either translucent or transparent is at or below shoulder level and in objects like windows, partitions and glass walls, if they are at waist height or below, they also constitute a greater element of risk.
The actions required to minimise the risk of injury or accidents will vary depending on different circumstances but can include re-routing pedestrians and/or vehicles or erecting barriers to prevent people coming into close contact with any of the glazing. Applying a safety film around it, if the glass object is an appropriate shape and size this will also help to prevent it shattering should it get broken. Visibly marking it will also enable people nearby to be aware of the potential dangers and stop them bumping into it.
These days, technological advancements have meant that glass products or substitutes for them are a lot safer than they were previously. The British Standard 6262: Part 4: 1994 Code of Practice for Glazing for Buildings states that glazing used in ‘critical locations’ (like those mentioned previously) in buildings must be safe. There is now tempered (toughened) glass, laminated glass and wired glass which all help to improve safety and greatly reduce the risk of injury.
It is now a UK legal requirement that glazed partitioning/screens and glass doors/gates are clearly defined with glass manifestation so that they can be seen clearly from both sides of the glass night or day and therefore avoid risk of collision because it is not properly visible.
As well as for legal reasons, glass manifestation can be used for decorative and aesthetic purposes, for enhancing privacy and for emphasising corporate identity and can be easily removed by chemical process.
Glass Partitioning – Contact us now for a free consultation and to discuss your business requirements.
GDL Interiors are based in Essex and work with clients in London, Suffolk, Essex, East Anglia, Hertfordshire, Kent and throughout the UK.