Home > Safe Environment > Safety When Working with Glass

Safety When Working with Glass

By: Jeff Durham - Updated: 5 Dec 2016 | comments*Discuss
 
Working Glass Safety Glazing Legislation

We all know that any occupation which involves working with glass needs to be carried out very carefully. From glass ornament makers to bottling plants, glass has the potential to cause serious injury if it is handled incorrectly and it can inflict severe cuts and other serious injuries.

With regards to the health and safety of working with glass, most of the legislation deals with issues relating to glass in windows and doors in workplaces and the work of glaziers and installers, although anybody who works with glass, no matter what their occupation, will be required to at least adhere to the legislation laid out in the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

Legislation Specifically Related to Glass Manufacture and Installation

The Workplace (Health, Safety and 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 required that every window or any kind of other transparent surface contained within the workplace – whether it be a door, partition, gate etc., should either be made of safety materials, protected against the possibility of breakage or be clearly signed or marked to make it apparent to those who came into contact with it. 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 as Regulation 14 only specifies that these additional precautions must be taken “where necessary for reasons of health and safety.” Therefore, a full risk assessment is vital.

Risk Assessment

The types of 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 and the type of activities which are taking 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.

Action

The action which should be taken 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 glazing. Applying a safety film around it, if the glass object is an appropriate shape and size, 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 from bumping into it.

Safety Glass

These days, technological advancements have meant that glass products or substitutes for them are a lot safer than they were previously. Today British Standard 6262: Part 4: 1994 Code of Practice for Glazing for Buildings states that glazing used in ‘critical locations’ (such as those which have been described above) 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.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
My landlord had the windows in our rental replaced. The window people laid down the old windows in the driveway on top of a tarp and smashed them before removing them. My driveway is now full of tiny pieces of glass and my son has already cut his feet twice. I've emailed the agent to get them to come back to clean it up but my concern is that they did this in the first place. Shouldn't these sorts of trades have guidelines?
Kathy - 5-Dec-16 @ 10:23 AM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Topics
Latest Comments
  • WorkplaceSafetyAdvice
    Re: Working in a Warehouse - Safety Issues
    Ms - Your Question:Hi I am after some advice regarding chemicals in a warehouse I have a paint shop in the middle of…
    12 December 2017
  • WorkplaceSafetyAdvice
    Re: Legal Minimum Temperature in a Warehouse?
    Aubrey - Your Question:I work in a warehouse with no heating apart from a fan heater and it’s freezing should I…
    12 December 2017
  • Aubrey
    Re: Legal Minimum Temperature in a Warehouse?
    I work in a warehouse with no heating apart from a fan heater and it’s freezing should I be working in this weather
    11 December 2017
  • Dodzi
    Re: Dealing with Employee Theft
    I been discriminated by stealing i had appeal with High Manager and he just asked me some questions and they sent me letter after…
    7 December 2017
  • WorkplaceSafetyAdvice
    Re: Dangers of Dust in the Workplace
    J - Your Question:I have worked in a very dusty warehouse for the passed 12 years. I have had an eye test and they said I…
    5 December 2017
  • WorkplaceSafetyAdvice
    Re: Forklift Truck Safety
    Pat - Your Question:Hi, can you tell me is it a legal requirement to wear a seat belt on a forklift truck when reversing?
    4 December 2017
  • Pat
    Re: Forklift Truck Safety
    Hi, can you tell me is it a legal requirement to wear a seat belt on a forklift truck when reversing?.
    3 December 2017
  • WorkplaceSafetyAdvice
    Re: Legal Minimum Temperature in a Warehouse?
    Doc - Your Question:I work for a company that's employed by Mars (contract C°) the mars personnel are well cared…
    1 December 2017
  • WorkplaceSafetyAdvice
    Re: How Many Breaks am I Entitled to?
    Crazych1ck - Your Question:I am a community care worker which involves a lot of strenuous moving and handling. I also drive…
    30 November 2017
  • Doc
    Re: Legal Minimum Temperature in a Warehouse?
    I work for a company that's employed by Mars (contract C°) the mars personnel are well cared for but we have to…
    30 November 2017
Further Reading...
Our Most Popular...
Add to my Yahoo!
Add to Google
Stumble this
Add to Twitter
Add To Facebook
RSS feed
You should seek independent professional advice before acting upon any information on the WorkplaceSafetyAdvice website. Please read our Disclaimer.