Health and Safety Policy Arrangements

H&S Legislation and HSE Information

The main reason why you should spend some time looking through the list of regulations below is they are all there to protect your health and safety when you are at work.

The list below is not an exhaustive one, but it serves as a convenient reference source of all the laws and HSE rules and regulations that your H&S training will often refer to.

The fundamental principle of all health and safety compliance is ignorance of the law is never accepted by the Courts as a defense for breaking it. It therefore follows that we all have a legal obligation to understand the laws and regulations that affect the way we go about our work.

Acts of Parliament

Also known as ‘primary legislation’, Acts are passed by the House of Parliament. Acts lay down the general duties to be followed by individuals and organisations operating in the UK.

The Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 is the primary legislation for health and safety in the UK. You can view what the HSE have published on the Act here.


Also known as ‘delegated legislation’, Regulations are issued under the name of the Secretary of State and they seek to add more detail on how the ACT should be applied to specific hazards or activities. Examples relevant to Health and Safety include:

  • Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015. View the Regulations or HSE information.
  • Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999. View the Regulations or HSE information.
  • Working at Height Regulations 2005. View the Regulations or HSE information.
  • Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012. View the Regulations or HSE information.
  • Provision and use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER). View the Regulations or HSE information.
  • Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 (LOLER). View the Regulations or HSE information.

Approved Code of Practice (ACOPs). The L-series.

ACOPS gives practical advice on how to comply with the law. If you follow the advice you will be doing enough to comply with the law in respect of those specific matters on which the Code gives advice. You may use alternative methods to those set out in the Code in order to comply with the law. However, the Code has a special legal status. If you are prosecuted for breach of health and safety law, and it is proved that you did not follow the relevant provisions of the Code, you will need to show that you have complied with the law in some other way or a Court will find you at fault.

  • Examples of relevant ACOPs include:
  • L5: Control of Substances Hazardous to Health
  • L8: The Prevention or Control of Legionella
  • L22: Safe Use of Work Equipment (PUWER)
  • L23: Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992
  • L24: Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare)
  • L74: First-Aid at Work
  • L101: Safe Work in Confined Spaces
  • L108: Controlling Noise at Work
  • L140: Hand-arm vibration
  • L143: Managing and Working with Asbestos

HSE Guidance

Guidance publications are issued by the Health and Safety Executive. They contain practical advice and examples of procedures and safe working practices. Guidance publications have no legal standing and are therefore not compulsory, unless specifically stated. Organisations and individuals are free to make other arrangements, but the Courts hold that if the guidance is followed then enough will be being done to comply with the law. Health and safety inspectors also seek to secure compliance with the law by using guidance publications as the minimum standard to be met.

  • A0: Asbestos Essentials (HSE Equipment & Method Sheets em0 to em10)
  • A14: Removing asbestos cement (AC) sheets,gutters etc
  • A23: Removing asbestos-containing floor tiles and mastik
  • A25: Removing compressed asbestos fibre gaskets and asbestos ropes seals
  • HSG17: Safety in the use of abrasive wheels
  • HSG33: Working at Height (Roofs, Scaffolding, etc)
  • INDG4557: Safe use of Ladders and Step Ladders
  • HSG60: Upper Limb Disorders in the workplace
  • HSG65: Managing for Health and Safety
  • HSG85: Electricity at Work
  • HSG107: Maintaining Portable Electrical Equipment
  • HSG168: Fire Safety in Construction
  • HSG264: Asbestos - Survey Guide

HSE Useful information

The HSE publish a range of useful information sheets and explanations of how the ACT and regulations should be applied. Once again organisations and individuals are free to make other arrangements, but the Courts hold that if the guidance in these documents are followed then enough will be being done to comply with the law.

Electrical Safety First: Best Practice Guides

The Electical Safety First organisation publish a series of best practice guides for electricians and installers.

Marisco Group

Head Office:
Unit J5, The Fulcrum
6 Vantage Way, Poole, BH12 4NU

Storage Unit:
Unit 5, West Howe Industrial Est
Elliott Rd, Bournemouth, BH11 8JY

Tel: 01202 474001


Useful info links regarding Covid-19:
Government site. Click here
ACAS site. Click here
HSE Covid Work Safely Guide. Click here
HSE Covid Guidance. Click here
Isolation Note. Click here

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