This sections contains information on Health and Safety Related matters that don’t conveniently fit elsewhere. At present, it contains details on Display Screen Equipment (DSE) and the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Regulations (WEEE)
You can access the information from the tabs below.
Three main factors act together to cause a risk of injury from working with computers.
- habitual bad posture and technique;
- working for extended periods of time without a break; and
- too great a frequency of working.
Extended use of the mouse seems liable to become the cause of many injuries. Control measures are largely those of promoting good practice. Everyone must understand what should be done, and how to do it. This guidance shows how. You are urged to take a precautionary approach because, by their very childishness, children need cared for. They may be more prone to musculoskeletal disorders or back pain because their bodies are still growing and because they can often be quite casual about posture. It is recommended that the risks are controlled largely by influencing children in the way they work. Children should be informed of the harm that can result from bad practices and trained in how best to look after themselves and others. Instructional training support for pupils and teachers has been prepared for use with this guide.
Disclaimer – The scope of this guidance covers those hazards that were recognized and accepted at the time of its preparation and which, at that time, were considered to be significant.
Employers’ Guide – DSE Employers Guide (pdf)
How safe are you when using your computer? A Guide for Pupils & Students – DSE Students Guide (powerpoint)
There is also an A5 leaflet that summarises the advice in the documents above that can be found here DSE A5 (pdf)
Related advice from SSERC
WEEE is considered in 10 specific categories:
- large household appliances includingrefrigerators, freezers, stoves, microwaves;
- small household appliances including clocks andwatches, irons, grinders;
- IT and telecommunications equipment including computer stations, printers, pocket and desk calculators;
- consumer items including radio and TV sets, hi-fi equipment, electronic keyboards;
- lighting equipment including sodium lamps,fluorescent (tubes and compact containing more than specified amounts of mercury), but not tungsten filament bulbs nor special fluorescent tubes used for special purposes, e.g. growth cabinets;
- electrical & electronic tools including drills,saws, equipment for milling, sanding, grinding, riveting, welding,soldering;
- toys, leisure and sports equipment e.g.electric trains, small portable body monitors used for body monitoringduring exercise;
- medical devices; some similar ones may be used in school health studies, e.g. pulse and blood pressure monitors.Medical devices are exempted from the requirements of WEEE;
- monitoring and control instruments including smoke detectors, thermostats, “weighing appliances” as laboratoryequipment;
- automatic dispensers e.g. biscuit and drinks machines i.e. if you haven’t already taken on board Jamie Oliver’s advice.
Where possible, batteries should be removed from WEEE and disposed of separately, but where they are embedded, integral and rechargeable they are treated as part of the instrument. The rules for battery disposal have been changing frequently and are likely to change again in the next two years. When the latest EU Directive is implemented in the next few years battery producers will be responsible for the uplift and recovery of the metals from at least the collection point onwards.
If the task of disposal is given to a recycling firm it is the responsibility of the producer of waste (school and education authority) to ensure that the chosen firm is licensed to deal with that typeof waste. It is prudent for the education authority not only to ask for a sight of the accreditation paperwork, but also to see the process happening.We know of two firms in Scotland where this has happened and of others who, although they had the paperwork, did not permit the user/producer to carry out a traceability audit. These latter firms may be satisfactory, butschools and education authorities have a responsibility to ensure that the disposal is carried out properly and legally. There have been some instances of “cowboy” firms sending the WEEE overseas to African countries or to the Far East where the dismantling and treatment has been anything but safe for both the workforce and the environment.
The four firms listed below will collect from anywhere on the mainland. Restructa, CCL(North) and MIREC also collect fromthe Islands. Prices given or costs asked for generally have to be negotiated and will depend on numbers, the age and quality of the machines, etc. Some firms have a charge for the uplift of £100. Usually there is no charge forthe treatment and disposal of PCs and peripherals, but there is a charge for dealing with the CRTs of monitors as they are classed as Special Waste (in England now renamed Hazardous Waste).
Restructa Limited (Offices)
1 Dunlop Drive,
Meadowhead Industrial Est.
Irvine KA11 5AU
15 –16 Arkwright Way,
North Newmoor Industrial Est.
Tel 01294 203555
Fax 01294 273399
CCL (NORTH) Ltd
1 Dunlop Drive,
Meadowhead Industrial Estate
KA11 5AUTel 01294 278844
Fax Fax 01294 275399
MHG Group Scotland,
131 Deerdykes View,
Cumbernauld G68 9HN
Tel 01257 279999
Fax 01257 279797
MIREC Asset Management Ltd,
Irongray Industrial Park,
Lochside Industrial Estate,
Dumfries DG2 0NR
Tel 01387 723000
Fax 01387 723020
There are others based in England or Wales who will no doubt also cover Scotland. Several of these can be found from their websites on the site for Industry Council for Electronic Equipment Recycling(ICER).