The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER or PUWER 98) are a set of 30 regulations made by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) that protect the manufacturers and end-users of machinery and work equipment.
PUWER replaced the original regulations introduced in 1992 and now covers the use of mobile equipment as well as improving regulations dating back to 1965. PUWER is supported by an Approved Code of Practice (ACOP) and where lifting equipment is required LOLER is introduced, these are more ACOP supported regulations.
PUWER was made under section 16 of the Health and Safety at Work Act (HSW Act) and so have special status, the HSE advice is:
“Following the guidance is not compulsory and you are free to take other action. But if you do follow the guidance you will normally be doing enough to comply with the law. Health and Safety inspectors seek to secure compliance with the law and may refer to this guidance as illustrating good practice.”
The Health and Safety Executive advise that PUWER assessments are carried out after installation of equipment and before its first use in service. It is also advised that routine checks are carried out on machinery and when it is relocated or there has been any damage inflicted on the machine.
For any further information on PUWER and HSE visit the HSE section on PUWER here.
Pilz PUWER Assessments
Our PUWER Assessments include a comprehensive report of all machinery and work equipment in the workplace. These assessments cover everything under Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (1999 in Northern Ireland). Pilz PUWER can also create a risk assessment of any non-conformities identified in the PUWER assessment.
Who needs an Assessment?
Ultimately, the employer is responsible for the safety of their employees and members of the public. Any machinery or work equipment (e.g. hand tools and lifting equipment) needs to be assessed by our expert inspectors, including equipment used by the self-employed and the end-user.
Our Assessments are conducted by our 10 assessors around the country who travel across the nation to any business. Pilz PUWER has been providing safe environments for over 20 years, with a team who have on average 22 years’ experience in the industry.
What’s in the Assessment?
We develop a complete report for each piece of machinery, any piece that doesn’t conform has a full risk assessment conducted on it. Before an assessor leaves the site you will receive a draft report, which will be quality checked by head office before the final report is sent via email.
Pilz PUWER Regulations
Made up of 5 separate parts, the 1998 update of The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER) has been ensuring companies provide safe working environments for over 20 years.
Who is affected by PUWER?
All companies that own, operate or take control over work equipment must meet the levels set by PUWER. An assessment should be carried out on first installation of any machinery and again if any machines are exposed to conditions which could cause deterioration and result in a dangerous situation. A thorough inspection must be carried out by an experienced PUWER assessor, of which Pilz have 10 located across the UK.
What is required by PUWER?
PUWER’s list of criteria ensures safe work equipment throughout the lifetime of a machines use, regardless of condition, age or origin.
PUWER’s regulations aim to ensure that machines are:
- Suitable for their intended use
- Safe for use – including safe maintenance with regular inspections and correct installation
- Used only be correctly trained engineers
- Accompanied with suitable health and safety measures
- Used in accordance with their specific requirements – such as mobile work equipment and power presses
Pilz's 30+ years' of experience make us the industry leader in assuring the quality and safety of your machines.
Pilz PUWER Inspections
Since the 1992 inception of Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER), every employer has been required to assess health and safety risks of work equipment, providing a safe environment for all. PUWER applies to both the provision and use of equipment and machines. From a hand tool to an entire assembly plant, all work equipment must meet PUWER requirements.
Why pick Pilz?
Pilz are one of the industry leaders in machinery safety, making us the perfect choice to complete PUWER inspections on site. Our comprehensive report will include risk evaluations that identify, estimate and evaluate any potential risks against PUWER regulations. A categorised breakdown of any non-conformances provides specific information as what must be fixed to pass PUWER guidelines.
What does an inspection include?
Up to 15 small machines can be inspected in a single day. In addition to the physical inspection of the machine under PUWER, the following points are also taken into consideration:
- Training records and procedures
- Maintenance operations (including records, logs and schedules)
- Standard operating procedures
- PPE requirements
- Working environment (Lighting and warning signs)
- General site health & safety
With trained PUWER assessors across the UK, Pilz vast experience within the industry allows us to offer competitive pricing and a thorough and reliable PUWER assessment.
The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 was introduced into UK law to replace the 1992 regulations, with more focus on control and the prevention of injuries to employees in the workplace.
PUWER 98 was introduced to cover all equipment and machinery in the workplace, although there are more specific regulations to cover lifting equipment (Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998, LOLER) and pressure equipment must meet Pressure Systems Safety Regulations (PSSR).
PUWER regulations cover a vast amount of work equipment from a simple hand tool to a complete production line including employees equipment that they may bring in to use at work. Equipment used by the public is still covered under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. New equipment should carry a CE Mark from the manufacturer to show its compliance with current legislation.
The set of 30 regulations aim to prevent injuries and fatal accidents by holding equipment owners and employers responsible for incidents to employees. Employers can receive seven-figure fines for failings in recognising potential hazards if incidents do occur. A risk assessment carried out by a competent person will identify hazards and find suitable control measures to prevent them.
Pilz PUWER can provide a PUWER risk assessment by our skilled experts to prevent incidents and give invaluable advice to employers for the safety of their workers.
Pilz PUWER and Regulation 9
The training of employees to safely use and operate machinery is paramount to the Health and Safety of any organisation. The safe use of equipment is underpinned by regulation 9 of The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER). Regulation 9 sets out the fundamental requirements, stating that it is the employers’ duty to train staff generally and provide more specific training where necessary.
Pilz PUWER provide training as part of our Inspection Service (http://www.pilzpuwer.co.uk/inspections). We provide professional training for employees who use machinery and those who supervise or manage the users of machinery. Employees are considered as every user of the machine including: temporary workers, agency staff, work experience and interns.
At Pilz PUWER we make sure that every member of staff fully understands the training given to them to satisfy PUWER Regulation 9. We do this by giving extra care when teaching; young people, the unexperienced, disabled users and those who do not have English as a first language, so that they all have a full understanding of the risks and precautions needed to avoid incidents.
As part of our PUWER assessment we evaluate the current competence of your employees and any malpractices. We then educate all members of staff to the required level through our training program.
For more information on Regulation 9 of PUWER click here (http://www.pilzpuwer.co.uk/guides/is-employee-training-covered-in-a-puwer-inspection)