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It is recommend if customers are to use water fed pole in sub zero temperatures that you carry out a full risk assessment and spread rock salt or grit on wet surface areas.

 It is not recommend using hot water in sub zero conditions on buildings that have no heating on the inside of the glass as the heat transfer onto frozen glass could potentially crack it.

 It is advisable to reconsider  the use of wfp on entrance areas to houses or commercial premises as the rock salt or grit would be brought in on the footwear, but it still can be used on other areas of the building. 

 Whilst it is appreciated that on some buildings or houses it would not be suitable, a risk assessment would help to identify which customers you can visit on colder days. 


Look out Look up

when working

near overhead

power cables


Health and Safety
The HSE and the Cleaning Industry are working in partnership through the Cleaning Industry Liaison Forum (CILF).  The Forum comprises representatives from trade associations, trade unions and key industry stakeholders who have agreed a priority plan.  HSE has a specific section of its website specifically for the cleaning industry. Click Here  for more information
Working at height whilst window cleaning
This information on the HSE web page is aimed at window cleaning businesses. It will help you to plan and organise your window cleaning activities and manage the associated risks.http://www.hse.gov.uk/cleaning/topics/window-cleaning.htm
The health and safety law poster....find out more including how to download the free leaflet/pocketcard or buy the poster at: HSE's website (http://www.hse.gov.uk/contact/faqs/lawposter.htm)

HSE’s cost recovery scheme, Fee for Intervention (FFI)

If you are found to be in material breach of health and safety law, you will have to pay for the time it takes us to identify the breach and help you put things right. This includes investigating and taking enforcement action and is called fee for intervention (FFI). http://www.hse.gov.uk/fee-for-intervention/

RIDDOR - Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013

RIDDOR puts duties on employers, the self-employed and people in control of work premises (the Responsible Person) to report certain serious workplace accidents, occupational diseases and specified dangerous occurrences (near misses).http://www.hse.gov.uk/riddor/

Incidents that happen in Northern Ireland should be reported to HSE NI.

Safe use of portable ladders & water-fed Pole Systems DVD


Safe use of portable ladders and waterfed pole systems is the title of  a new Safety training DVD.  It shows the importance of a thorough inspection of the site and of the equipment.  Moreover the importance of safety in securing the ladder and its correct use….with an emphasis on the potential consequences.   Waterfed poles - Traditionally, window cleaners have used all manner of ladders and platforms to reach the higher windows, but the introduction of new technology and the Working At Height Regulations in 2005 have shown us that if it’s not essential to work at height…then don’t! 


Using telescopic poles might seem like the ultimate solution, but they’re not without their dangers.  In this short video, we’ll aim to show you how to get the most out of your water-fed pole system and how to keep you and the people around you safe.   Available from the Federation at a price of 10.00 for Members - 25.00 for Non-Members.  Click Here to email  your order, or call: 0161 432 8754

"Cleaning Windows Safely"  - Accredited Training Course 
A one-day IOSH accredited Safety Course covering both the use of Water fed poles and portable ladders.  Written by window cleaners for window cleaners.  No nonsense - hands on practical and theory course with an IOSH accreditation at the end.  Giving you an industry recognised qualification for the price of 135.00 plus vat for members; and 185.00 plus vat for Non-members.   Click Here  for a booking form and more information on training courses... Click Here to email for a booking form. 
"Risk Assessment" - Accredited Training Course for Window Cleaners
This one-day IOSH accredited Health and Safety Course is aimed at everyone within the window and specialist cleaning industry and specifically self-employed, employees, supervisors, managers and safety officers.  For dates and venues for this course Click Here For dates and venues -  Click Here for more information and a booking form.

What is a Health and Safety Policy?

A health and safety policy sets out your general approach and objectives (your vision) and the arrangements you have put in place for managing health and safety in your business. It is a unique document that says who does what, when and how.  It shows your staff, and others, your commitment to health and safety and simply describes how you will implement and monitor your health and safety controls.

Click Here for Example Health and Safety Policy 


What is a risk assessment?

A risk assessment is simply a careful examination of what, in your work, could cause harm to people, so that you can weigh up whether you have taken enough precautions or should do more to prevent harm. Click Here  for Risk-Assessment Template  Further information and advice on risk assessment can be found at:www.hse.gov.uk/risk


Safety in Window Cleaning Using Waterfed Pole Systems and Portable Ladders

In recent years many window cleaners have adopted the use of waterfed pole systems that facilitate the cleaning of windows up to 60ft/20 metres high from ground level.  Avoiding the need to work at height is an obvious immediate attraction; however, there are various considerations to be taken into account.    Click Here  For full guidance on this.
Supervising Window Cleaning Cradle Work  -

I would like to know a little bit more info regarding the safe use of a cradle for window cleaning work. Click Here for more information


 HSE Shattered Lives Campaign - Are you height aware?

Last year 45 workers died following a fall from height and 3750 were seriously injured. Reducing this unnecessary injury toll is a priority and Shattered Lives is the HSE's latest campaign. Find out what happens when workers are put at risk and what you can do to stop falls from height in your workplace by Clicking here


This Health and Safety section contains awareness articles: either click the relevant link or: Click Here 
Don’t let a dodgy ladder shatter your life.  Falls from height continue to be the main cause of death in the workplace and one of the main causes of serious injury.   Around a third of all 'falls from height' accidents are as a result of a fall from a ladder
The Ladder Exchange campaign 2012 is a scheme which allows "dodgy" ladders to trade them in for new ones at a discount.  2012 is the Exchange's sixth year and runs from 1st September until 30th November, during which time any ladder user can trade their ladder in at a local ladder exchange trade-in partner. Further detials on the scheme can be found at www.ladderexchange.co.uk   
Take a look at the guidance on ladder safety
Access the STEP tool to learn more about managing slip and trip risks: Click Here
This HSE guide on the safe use of ladders and stepladders is aimed at employers, the self-employed and people who work from ladders.

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Safe Use of Ladders and Stepladders
[318KB - PDF Format]


. Top Tips for Ladder and Stepladder Safety [38KB - PDF Format]

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This toolbox talk [307KB - PDF format] is to help ladder users recognise the risks and work safely. This is supported by a pocket card [38KB - PDF format], which provides useful information on safe ladder use in a handy size for users to keep with them



The Work at Height Regulations 2005


The Work at Height Regulations 2005 [92KB - PDF Format] This link takes you to the detailed article describing the work at height regulations that came into force on the 6th of April 2005.

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Ladders are not banned – but they should be used sensibly

Click the image to view the HSE Press Release

Using Access Equipment Safely in building maintenance

This leaflet is mainly aimed at employers, so they can make sure their workers have the right skills and experience to use access equipment safely and to identify gaps in knowledge and decide what level of supervision is required, or where a worker may need some training.  There are sections covering specific pieces of access equipment, from ladders to cherry pickers.

Click the image to view