Dangerous pumpkins can be costly

Getting ready  for Halloween, a card shop I visited recently had displayed pumpkin balloons on a flimsy stand. Although the stand was tall, the base was not clearly visible against the dark floor surface. It was also partially blocking the exit and creating a trip hazard. Such a simple thing as a stand of pumpkin balloons could be a costly error.

It’s not necessary to have an accident for the HSE or local authorities to prosecute businesses; if a hazard is pointed out and the business owner ignores the warning, a fine may result. Sometimes the fines for trip hazards potentially injuring staff can be greater than for food safety offences such as in this case study.

If anyone is actually injured, it’s likely to result in being sued as well as a fine and if it’s an employee, there’s also the cost of sick pay and replacement staff to consider, as well as the damage to your reputation.

This all adds up to very expensive results of not considering health and safety hazards and there are plenty of compensation lawyers just waiting for the opportunity to sue employers.

It’s really a straightforward process to assess risks, see this video I made about it. But if you need any help with this, please give me a call. I can identify the hazards for you and help you avoid these costly mistakes.

Please contact me on 07511 218865 or email me on helen@august-safety.co.uk

¹Employers have a duty of care to employees under section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, and to non-employees under section 3.