Brushcutting

Generic Risk Assessment Assessment: Brushcutting

Scope: [Activity Name]

Volunteer’s Tools: Only properly maintained and, where appropriate, serviced equipment may be used.

Volunteer’s Dogs: Dogs should only be brought to sites where they will not disturb wildlife and other livestock and where it is acceptable to the management and other users of the site. Dogs are brought at the owner’s own risk, the group cannot accept any responsibility for their wellbeing.

Typical groups at risk

Volunteers; other site users; general public

Typical uncontrolled outcomes

Cuts and sprains; puncture wounds; strained back; crush injuries; Toxocariasis; Toxoplasmosis; Phytophotodermatitis

Hazards

Cuts, abrasions, injury from flying matter

Injury from Flying Debris

Striking of hidden objects, stones, manhole covers etc.

Electric Shock, burns, fatality / Disconnection of services

Entrapment, hit by moving parts

Risk to operator of short term hearing loss and potential for debris in ears

Potential pierce injury or inhalation dust/debris.

Controls

All machinery used on site is subject to appropriate checks and servicing.

Additional team members to provide ‘lookout’ and warn members of the public.

Area being cut to be cordoned off, where possible.

Visual check of area for any stones, raised manhole covers, old posts etc.

Correct PPE to be worn by operator and others working in close proximity. First Aid Kit to be available in vehicle.

All exposed cables to be reported to the appropriate stats company immediately.

Report all unburied cables immediately to the Supervisor for reporting to the appropriate stats company.

Strimmer / brushcutter never to be left unattended.

Be aware of the general public.

Stop strimming if members of the public approach the working area – additional team members to provide warning.

Access should be limited with clear signage provided by the site leader. Trailer kit includes suitable signage

Site Leader to consider use of watchman if site is on Public Right of Way

Mandatory PPE includes high-viz jacket, operator is visible.

Working area should be at least 15m away from other site members to avoid debris etc.

Site leader to confirm operator is trained and competent.

Site Leader to brief all site staff of brushcutting work and need to keep clear.

Mandatory PPE includes safety eyewear.

Pre-work checks include a check for stones/loose debris in the working area.

Working area should be at least 15m away from other site members to avoid debris etc.

Site Leader to brief all site staff of brushcutting work and need to keep clear.

Mandatory PPE includes safety eyewear.

Pre-work checks include a check for stones/loose debris in the working area. See SWI.

Site time is generally short, with regular breaks. Risk minimised by short exposure.

PPE includes hearing protection.

Pre-use checks include check that cutters are sharp.

Site kit includes files for sharpening the cutters.

Only trained and competent persons are to use the Brushcutter.

Manual to be included in site kit for info on sharpening blades.

Forcing machine is likely to cause damage.

Site Leader is responsible for well-being of site persons.

Allow machine to cool before maintenance/refuelling.

Design and correct use minimise contact with hot parts.

Mandatory PPE includes gloves

Machine used in open air, aiding dispersion.

Brushcutter will not be used in confined spaces

Pre-use check covers security of all parts.

Cutters and attachments only to be fitted by trained and competent person. Ensure motor is fully closed down and the engine given time to cool.

Use only trained operatives to change blades, pull cords or plugs. Place machine on firm level surface.

Ensure proper tools are used.

Loose parts will cause out-of balance running.

 

Equipment to be properly maintained.

PPE1. Normal Site PPE, Safety Boots, fastened High-Viz Jacket, Safety Helmet

2. Goggles or similar eye protection

3. Gloves.

4. “Overall” type long trousers.

5. Ear Protection (ear muffs or ear plugs for short term use)

Note.  A specific Helmet for the Brushcutter is provided, includes face shield, ear muffs and safety helmet.

 

Risk assessment adapated from econetreading.org.uk 

 

Mandatory PPE