The Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 (HSW Act)
The Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 (HSW Act), sets out in broad terms the general duties on a wide range of people (‘dutyholders’) working in the fairground and amusement park industry.
These include the following:
Designers, manufacturers, importers and suppliers
Designers, manufacturers, importers and suppliers have duties to ensure that the attractions are safe for use when first supplied and to provide their customers with appropriate information to allow safe use. Their duties will vary according to circumstance.
Organisers (who can be companies) have overall control of the fairground or amusement park, and have duties concerning safe layout and emergency procedures.
Controllers (who can be companies) own or otherwise have control of an attraction, and have a duty to operate and maintain it in a safe condition.
Operators are in immediate charge of an attraction and have a duty to operate it safely.
Attendants which help to operate an attraction, have a duty to take reasonable care for their own and others’ safety, and to follow instructions.
Inspection Bodies (IBs)
Inspection Bodies (IBs) (who may be individuals or companies) provide inspection and testing services. Where they are engaged by other dutyholders to perform specific tasks, it must be established by that duty holder that the particular type of inspection and testing service required is one that the IB is competent to perform.
The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER)
The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER) expands on the general duties in the HSW Act and requires that all work equipment, which includes amusement devices, are inspected regularly (usually once a year) by a competent person to ensure they remain safe for use. ADIPS helps controllers comply with the law as using an ADIPS Inspection Body will normally be enough to comply with the inspection requirements under PUWER.
ADIPS ensures devices are checked and certified as safe to operate prior to first use and annually thereafter providing confidence and reassurance to members of the public. However safe operation is not verified by ADIPS. For that controllers and operators should refer to the guidance in sections’ F and G of HSG 175.
HSG 175: Fairgrounds and amusement parks – Guidance on safe practice
The HSE publication HSG 175 was written in consultation with the fairground and amusement park industry and gives advice to duty holders on how reduce risks, work safely and to comply with the law.
Following the guidance in HSG 175 and the ADIPS system is not compulsory and duty holders are free to take other action but they need to be prepared to show what they did was equally effective.
The HSE accept that duty holders following HSG 175 and the ADIPS system will normally be doing enough to comply with the law. Health and safety inspectors seek to secure compliance with the law and may refer to this guidance as illustrating good practice.