Safe Working Policy

Bristol Open Technology Lab tries to keep the level of risk exposure in Hackspace in line with the expectations of a shared-use workshop environment, however as the space is in constant use and we have no paid staff to monitor it, we rely on all members to ensure that the space remains safe, and to notify us if it is not.

You are responsible for your own safety when using the Hackspace, and for making sure you do not endanger the safety of those around you.

You must:

  • Assess whether you are capable of using tools and equipment safely before doing so (whether they belong to Hackspace, you, or another member). Do not use it if you’re not sure you are competent.
  • Consider the reach of influence when using tools and equipment. Noise, dust, and fumes will travel outside your immediate workspace and you must make reasonable efforts to ensure that they do not cause a danger to others.
  • Be mindful of others when using potentially dangerous tools and machines. They may not be paying attention, understand the risks, or be wearing appropriate PPE.
  • Remember that hackspace is a dynamic and evolving environment, and you can’t assume that things will be as you left them on your last visit, even if it was only yesterday. You must reassess the risks associated with a task on each visit.
  • Make sure you are in a fit state to use any piece of Hackspace equipment. Do not use machinery under the influence of drink or drugs. Do not use machinery while tired.
  • Never defeat or hack Hackspace’s safety equipment and systems, such as interlocks and keycard access devices.
  • Wear appropriate PPE for any task you are undertaking.
  • Never disconnect or disable the earthing of any electrical equipment.
  • Actively maintain escape routes and ensure first aid and fire equipment is not blocked.

If you see something that poses an unacceptable level of risk, you must remedy that risk if it is safe to do so and you have appropriate knowledge or experience. You must also report the incident to the Directors or post on the forum, and leave a written note on, or in plain view of the hazard to alert other members.

If you see someone working in an unsafe way, alert them to the hazard. If someone tells you that you are working unsafely, immediately stop and reassess your working practices.

If someone gets injured, narrowly misses getting injured, or a situation is created that could easily lead to injury, you should fill in the incident book (located by the first aid kit in the corridor), or report the incident directly to the Directors.

Use the correct PPE for every task. You must use PPE when using any machine with a PPE warning label, when working close to a running machine with a PPE label, or at any other time you consider appropriate

Hackspace provides PPE for your use. If necessary PPE is missing, do not undertake a task that requires it. Our PPE is on the consumables list, so you will be reimbursed if you personally restock any missing PPE items.

Our wiki has instructions and notes for the usage of some of our tools and equipment. Read the warnings, and if in doubt, ask another member.

  • policies/safe_working
  • Last modified: 16 months ago
  • by felix