Risk Assessment

Generic risk assessment for all gardening services and maintenance carried out by Weed Warriors.
Risk Assessors Name: Jack Palmer
Job Title: Company Director
Date of Assessment: Reviewed in June and July 2010

Duties / TaskHazards IdentifiedPeople At RiskControl MeasuresRisk Rating
ECPCSEnsure environmental impacts are always consideredSeverityProbabilityRiskAre measures in place and adequate?
Generic duties within garden maintenanceTrailing cables present a trip hazard. Wet pathways pose a slipping hazard.
Where work is being carried out at height; falling objects present a risk of injury.
Ensure that there are no trip or slip hazards to the general public or the client’s employees. Where appropriate areas or equipment is cordened off and signs displayed.
Ensure that Weed Warrior employees have suitable footwear to prevent slipping.
Hard hats to be provided where necessary.
335These controls are considered adequate
General gardening, weeding;
Pruning: use of secateurs, long handled pruners etc
Cuts, lacerations and eye damage from falling cuttings
Thorn pricks, infection,
Cuts and nicks from small sharp hand tools..
Injury from tools left on the ground.
Tetanus, contamination from soil (animal faeces)
Infections to cuts etc
Ensure Weed Warriors employees are fully trained on using tools safely and competently.
Provide protective eyewear if appropriate.
Wear Personal Protective Equipment (robust gloves) to prevent rose / hawthorn type pricks.
Clear tools away when not in use.
Ensure blades from sharp tools are protected, and locked away when not in use.
All tools to be counted in and out.
Always wear protective gloves, avoid rubbing eyes / face area with gloved hands, or at all. Ensure any existing cuts are covered with plasters, new cuts; ensure clean and provide adequate first aid cover..
Always wash hands thoroughly when gardening duties have been completed.
Ensure all those involved in these duties have an up to date tetanus immunisation.
366With the control measures in place this risk is adequately controlled.
Cutting grass & Hedge cutting;
Use of lawnmowers, (electric or petrol/ manual or ride on), strimmers, sheers, (electric or petrol) hedgecutters etc
Electric shock.
Lacerations, serious injury to limbs, fingers etc.
Flying stones / debris; eye damage. Hearing damage, manual handling injuries.
Muscular injuries to back, shoulders and neck.
Burns from petrol.
Residual current device to be fitted to all electrical equipment, or connected to purpose RCD socket.
All RCDs checked daily by users and properly maintained.
Only fully trained and competant staff to operate equipment.
Where appropriate; personal protective equipment, suitable for the task to be undertaken, to be worn. (Robust gloves, goggles, ear defenders, steel toed footwear, overalls etc)
Areas to be checked for stones and debris.
Other people removed from area.
Equipment serviced in accordance with manufacturers instructions.
Blades to be protected and kept sharp.
No smoking to be allowed in the vicinity of stored petrol, can or petrol equipment.
Petrol - Max. of 5 litres stored in purpose container in locked van or exterior building. Sign “Flammable Liquid” displayed on exterior of building or van.
838These controls are considered adequate.
Use of garden chemicals; disinfectant pesticides, weed killer etc.Accidental ingestion of toxic/poisonous substances; chemical or plant.Identify all harmful substances including asbestos, lead, solvents, paints and weed killers. CoSHH assessment completed for all chemicals used in the garden – where possible eliminated in favour of organic methods of control. Ensure that chemicals used are safe for both the operator and the environment.
Adequate supervision and controls with locked storage and minimum amounts stored.
Appropriate PPE should be worn as recommended in the CoSHH assessment.
Each site will be assessed for poisonous/ toxic plants/berries etc and either removed or access controlled where appropriate.
All Weed Warrior employees are made aware of the risks from hazardous substances, what to do to avoid the risks and how to proceed if inappropriate contact is made.
736These are high risk activities but the control measures are considered adequate for the risk
Use of equipment;
Ladders, power tools etc
Risk of injury, falling from ladders, equipment not working correctly etcChoose equipment carefully to ensure that it is appropriate for the type of work including: duration of task, height at which task is to be carried out and general site conditions.
Ensure all tools and machinery are maintained and in good repair.
Carry out a pre-use visual inspection of all equipment to be used. A procedure is in place for highlighting and dealing with tools with defects, including repair or replace accordingly.
Ensure all operators are trained and competent in using equipment.
Ladder length is limited to 9m unless previously arranged and discussed with the client.
Ladders are tied off wherever possible, are not left unattended and rungs are kept clean and dry.
Ladders are used at the correct angle of 1:4.
Suitable footwear is worn.

People at Risk Key: E = Employees, C = Customers, P = Public, CS = Client’s staff

Risk Rating: VH = Very High, H = High, M = Medium, L = Low